Pergolas, while becoming increasingly popular as backyard shading structures, are not incredibly effective when it comes to actually blocking the sun. Their iconic open rafters add style, but allow a large amount of sunlight to pour through to the area below. Adding roman shades to your pergola is an easy way to maximize the efficacy of that classic framework, while still maintaining the old-world style.
The pergola dates back centuries, even to the ancient Egyptians and Romans. They were originally used to shade gardens and are often garnished with various climbing plants, including grapevine, wisteria, and climbing rose. These plants often climb up and over the rafters to more fully encompass the pergola. Over the years, though ebbing in and out of popularity, the design and use of pergolas have remained fairly constant, and recently an affinity for gazebos, pergolas, and the like has flowed back into American backyard design.
Roman shades are the perfect addition to pergolas because they are suspended from parallel wires that run the length of whatever structure is used to shade your desired area. They can be lengthened out to cover the space, providing comfortable shade and protection from the ultraviolet rays of the sun. Or they can be drawn back to allow the warmth of the sun on cooler days to cascade through the eaves. Roman shades give you the option of cool shade when you need it or warm sun when that breeze is just too chilly. The traditional appearance of romans is matched by their versatility, making them the ideal method of shading the space below and providing a cool area to relax outdoors.
Of course, not everyone wants to be able to transition from shade to sunshine. For more permanent and consistent shade, a simple shade panel could be attached to the upper eaves of the pergola using screws, quick links or rope. Whether roman shades or a shade panel is used, the install is quick and simple, and step-by-step guides can be found online. Get more out of your pergola by adding roman shades or panels, and just this once, you can have your cake and eat it too!