How To Use Awnings Creatively

By Subodh / October 3, 2014

If you have a nice backyard or lawn, you can add an outdoor awning to give it a dreamy, almost magazine photo-like look. Awnings help you create a warm, cozy place in your garden. Imagine how comforting it would be to lounge on an outdoor sofa with a beautiful awning shading you from the sun’s glare. Or to have tea with friends in fall under the awning, watching withered leaves fall to the ground- without spoiling your tea and treats.

Retractable or fixed

Awnings can be either retractable or fixed, both have their advantages and disadvantages. Fixed awnings are less of a hassle and you only have to handle it once, during installation. However, if you wish to make the awning out of a delicate cloth, fixed awning will subject it to rain, sun’s glare and all kinds of harsh weather which may damage the cloth. Retractable awnings can be easily made of delicate fabrics and put up only in suitable weather. But that is again difficult to set up every time. So pick what cloth you want to use. If you are looking to use sturdy material, go for fixed awnings to minimize work.

Awnings

Lighted

You can sew small loops with threads on the awning cloth. Now insert long chains of tiny light bulbs through these loops. This makes for a beautiful awning and at night, it will be the object of your neighbor’s envy. This awning can become the centerpiece of a romantic date, a candlelit dinner or simply an evening together with your friends and loved ones.

Canvas And Colors

Colors on canvas make for attractive yet sturdy awnings for your garden. You can buy colors or patterns on canvas cloth and use it as awnings. In fact, if you love your colors, cut off long, rectangular pieces of canvas of different complementary colors. Hang these from the awning frame. You can even make a makeshift frame by planting four iron poles on the ground in a square, tie a thick rope around the four poles and simply attach the strips of canvas with clips in whatever sequence of colors you fancy.

Greenhouse

If you have plants that cannot stand the direct heat of the summer sun, an awning is a great idea to keep these plants healthy at the peak of summer. If you have a framework of gazebo or pergola in your garden, hang some light colored from the frame. This makeshift awning will shade your pots from the direct heat. If you do not have a pre-built frame, use bamboo shoots to make a four-post frame and hang canvas cloth.

Garden party

If you are used to hosting garden parties, it makes sense to have awnings ready. All you need to do is make a frame and buy some attractive cloths to hang from them. You can make several modifications. For example, it is wise to buy several types of clothes. Sheer or lacy fabric looks beautiful and is suitable for spring. You can put these up on any moderate weather when the sun leaking through the porous material is not a problem and there is no possibility of rain. During spring, you can decorate the awning with flowers. For summer, thick and brightly colored acrylic is perfect- it doesn’t get bleached by the sun easily and also casts a cool shade. For fancier parties, make the awning into a dome and hang a chandelier for night.

Campfire

If you are going to host campfires, it is a good idea to use awning. But you must do it with caution. It is best to hang awnings from a four-post frame (that you can also make yourself out of bamboo shoots or wooden posts or wrought iron rods) and hang the cloth on the sides and keep the top open. This way fumes won’t be trapped inside the awnings or create sooty impressions on the cloth. It is also a good idea to secure the edges of the awnings loosely with strings and nails planted in the ground. This way, even when it is windy, the cloth will swish but won’t fly into the fire.

Try these simple yet cool ideas to make the best of your awnings. Awnings no longer have to just stand there in the sun looking back at you each time you step onto your patio. With these creative ideas your awning can make your home a lot more attractive.