How to Make a Sun Shade Sail Cover

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0609_coolaroo01Ancient Egyptians used large pieces of fabric to provide shade. We still use them and they are called Shade Sails or Sun Shade Sails. Patio sun shade sails use tensioned fabric across 3 or more anchors to a sail in the air to provide shade on the below area.

Today’s sun shade fabric uses the longest lasting UV protective fabric available.sandterracottaOverPool.jpg.scaled.500 You can sit under your sun sail during the summer months and enjoy the family without the worry of UV rays. In recent years Sun Sail shade fabric has become increasingly popular and will continue to grow when home owners realize the possibilities.



A fabric patio cover provides shade from the sun and protection from the elements. You can use shade cloth, a painter’s drop cloth, a simple tarp or you can design and sew your own from canvas. Patio covers can be square, rectangular or in the shape of a triangle. You can also create a swooping, sail-like effect by hanging one end higher than the other. Make a fabric patio cover in the morning with these steps and enjoy your covered patio in the afternoon.

images (1)You can purchase Sun Sails or Shade Sails through a variety of stores such as Target, Home Depot, Bath Bed and Beyond, Ebay and a large number of online sites. Just Google “Sun Shade Sails”.

self1Or you can make them fairly easily with the instructions   provided by Ehow at the end of the post. There are a number of methods, I’ve included four at the end of the post, depending on whether you are attaching triangular sails or rectangular shades to posts in the ground or trees.

This set of instructions is to raise sails supported by poles planted into the ground.



Use the grommet tool to put grommets in each corner of the fabric. If you’re using a very large or very heavy covering, put grommets in the center of three sides.


article-step-by-step_ehow_images_a04_ph_r8_make-fabric-patio-cover-1.2-800x800Dig post holes at each corner of the patio for a square covering or at three sides for a triangle. Space them so the covering will be taut when it’s installed.

article-step-by-step_ehow_images_a04_ph_r8_make-fabric-patio-cover-1.3-800x800Put 8 foot tall posts in the holes and back fill the area around them. Use a drill to make a starter hole near the top of each post on the sides facing the patio. Screw in a heavy-duty screw eye.

article-step-by-step_ehow_images_a04_ph_r8_make-fabric-patio-cover-1.4-800x800Thread a length of sturdy clothesline or rope through each grommet and tie it into a loop. Slide the loops over the screw eyes in each post and adjust them until the cover is tight.

article-step-by-step_ehow_images_a04_ph_r8_make-fabric-patio-cover-1.5-800x800Use adjustable tent poles,  permanently install posts in the middle of the sides if the covering is large or heavy, or secure ends to tree limbs in your yard.

Now that summer has finally arrived, we thought this attractive, functional and economical shade solution for your backyard deck, patio, pool, play area, campground, outdoor event or any place that shade is needed was timely. Combine more than one Sun Shade Sail or mix shapes to create your own unique outdoor shade and living space.

As always, we hope that you enjoy this post and find it helpful in restyling the place you live into the place you love!

Photo sources: Quictents, Shadesails, Sunshadesail, Outdoorsunshadesails

Instructions source: Ehow

4 Responses to How to Make a Sun Shade Sail Cover

  1. Lincoln Sheeran January 7, 2014 at 9:30 am #

    These days there are many high-quality shade canopy products available. As we are becoming more and more aware of the harmful effects that overexposure to UV rays can cause, lots of people have looked towards additional protection.

  2. Lincoln Sheeran January 9, 2014 at 6:37 am #

    It is really good stuff . The whole procedure is explained very well with all usable tools. Shade sails can be found in a wide range of shapes, sizes, and materials. Before you go and make a purchase, be sure to understand your product fabric type, coverage area, and installation requirements.

  3. Peninsula Shade Sails August 5, 2015 at 2:26 pm #

    Great Article, If anyone is looking to install a shade sail at there home remember that there are plenty of professional fabricators that can now offer custom shade sails made to your measurments. Sometimes this is an easier way to go compared to the of the shelf sails.

  4. Richard Roscoe September 29, 2017 at 4:36 pm #

    Great work and I’m sure it will have helped many DIY’ers. With larger projects, it becomes increasingly important to ensure the security of the supporting posts. If anyone needs professional help or advice we are always here.

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