Garden style covered: How to choose a quality awning for your home
With shorter days and chilly evenings, summer might currently seem a long way off – but we can’t be the only ones looking ahead and daydreaming of balmy days in the garden, soaking up the sunshine or having lavish garden parties with friends.
Even in the UK, the sun can get excessively hot, and no-one wants to be the stereotypical Brit who ends up badly burnt on the first warm day of the year. But rather than staying indoors or slathering yourself from head to toe with suntan lotion – although that is still important – awnings can prove to be a great solution for get-togethers and gatherings out on the patio, providing some much-needed shade under which guests can sit back, relax and enjoy a cool glass of champagne while you get the gas fired up and get some good quality cuts sizzling away on the grill.
As well as protecting you from warmer weather, a good awning can provide shelter from the rain and wind throughout the year, as well as that extra bit of privacy from your neighbours when relaxing outside.
All about awnings
Awnings can be installed easily on most patios by mounting brackets to the frame that supports the weight of the awning. Retractable awnings consist of a metal framework that’s covered with hard-wearing fabric, with the framework normally mounted directly to the brickwork of your house. These awnings can be opened and retracted either manually, with a hand lever, or with an automatic electronic system. Providing instant shade, they can also be conveniently rolled up when they are not required, and they’re not a permanent structure on your patio.
Meanwhile, canopy awnings are free-standing structures that are supported by a solid frame that is bolted to the patio. Becoming a permanent fixture, you can remove the cover in winter and replace come springtime.
If you’re new to garden awnings, then there are a few things to consider before you go ahead and invest. Unsure where to start? These are the key points to consider.
Choose an awning that will provide adequate shade
When it comes to awnings, size does matter, but getting the size of yours just right can be more difficult than you think. The sun is constantly on the move, so an awning that provides shade at one point in the day may not later on. With this in mind, you’ll need to ensure that it’s large enough to cover you from sun-up to sundown, and any good awning provider will carry out a technical survey before you buy to make sure it’s just right.
Opt for a quality treated fabric than can withstand unpredictable weather
The British weather is notoriously changeable, so a durable material is a necessity to ensure your awning will last the distance. Come rain, shine or gale-force wind, a strong and water-resistant material that is treated to prevent weathering and fading and ensure long-term performance is a sensible choice – and should see you through all eventualities.
Consider how you use your outside space
If you’re looking to extend your entertaining space so you can enjoy outdoor dining all summer long, then consider upgrading to an awning that meets all your needs – and not just one. Have lighting and heating integrated to create a comfortable space you are happy to invite guests into – and one that you can easily relax in whilst chatting over a bottle of wine or two, long into the summer nights. For further convenience and functionality, invest in a motorised awning, so you can open and retract your awning at the click of a button.
Consider design as well as functionality
Awnings come in a variety of colours and patterns, providing the perfect opportunity to inject a bit of personality into your living space. Your garden is an extension of your home, and if you’ve already spruced yours up with some luxury outdoor furniture then choose a chic and understated awning to match. A single colour with stylish scalloped edges can add extra flair and complement your interior décor, too. Meanwhile, a straight hem can give a contemporary tailored look – it all comes down to taste.
For more information on awnings and why they are the must have home and garden accessory in 2019, visit https://shades-awnings.co.uk/.