How to Build a Retractable Canopy

Photo Credit: HGTV

Adding a pergola or canopy to your backyard can make your backyard so much nicer to be in. You create some nice shade to relax under on hot days and a place to sit under if it's raining. Since wood diy ideas can be quite expensive, it's great that there are other do it yourself home projects that are more affordable to make like this one from HGTV's website. Sam Henderson show us how to make a diy retractable canopy that will provide shelter and shade, plus it also looks really modern and stylish. This diy idea will probably take a little bit of skill to make, so you should have some simple carpentry skills as well as some basic sewing skills. All you need for this diy project will be some PVC pipe that's the width you want the shade to be. For this one, they went with 10 foot long PVC pipes and got 8 of them to use for the diy project. You'll also need a drill, some PVC caps to go on the ends of the pipes, some spray paint to paint them, drop cloth, 15 yards of sailcloth, 3 spools of outdoor polyester thread, a sewing machine, eye screws, wood posts,

paint or stain and sealer, wire cable rope, turnbuckles with 1 eye screw and 1 hook, cable ferrules and a swaging tool.

To prepare the rods for the diy shade, you will want to lay all of the PVC pipes on the ground and then mark dots at the measurements recommended in the post from HGTV. Then drill a hole into each of the marks and paint all of the rods and their caps with the spray paint colour of your choice. Make sure they are able to dry completely before moving on. Then, you'll sew the shade. There will be a total of 4 panels for the diy shade with two rods at each end, and then the piece of fabric will all be joined together to create the large shade. Start by sewing the panels together and leave a seam allowance. THen, you'll create a nice thick hem on the outside of the entire set of panels that make the shade. Next, they explain how to make the pockets that the rods fit into by sewing long and slender pieces of fabric one the seams where the panels are sewn together. This makes a couple of pockets for each of the rods to fit into. Which they show in depth through photos on the HGTV website. Once you have the pockets in place, you can slide the poles through the pockets to hold them in place and now you'll have your diy shade.

To create the structure that the shade will be attached to you need to make a pergola type of frame with 4 inch by 4 inch by 8 foot posts. You'll attach the posts to an existing solid structure or use a 10-foot long post and sink it 2 feet in the ground into concrete. The next posts will be spaced 10 feet and 6 inches away. Thinner wood pieces then get attached to the posts to create the line that the shade is attached to. Much like a shower curtain, you'll attach eye screws to the tops of the PVC pipes and then run the metal wire through them. All fo the materials for this diy project are very light which means you don't need to have a lot of support. If you're going to use heavier materials for a diy project like this one, make sure you use more hefty support beams. Check out all of the instructions and details for this project on the HGTV website.***

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