You would think that I would have at least some Italy pictures ready to go by now. But I don’t. You see my old laptop was out of space and no matter how many pictures and music I moved to the external hard drive it was still too full and s…l…o..w. Luckily my brother (whose major is computers) was still in town after dog-sitting for two weeks and officially condemned it and told us what we needed. So we did what every jet-lagged person does…go buy a new computer. We decided on a desktop because of amount space and power I wanted while still keeping the cost down. I love my new toy that is running amazingly fast….and I now have photoshop. I was so excited to get to making all the vacation pictures super pretty. Then I tried to use photoshop…..and then started googling “basic photoshop tutorials”….and then went to the bookstore to buy a how-to book.
So while I attempt to understand the very basic functioning of this program, I wanted to share with you my guest post from Remodelaholic a couple of weeks ago. I am happy to report that they have been in use over a month with lots of sun, wind and rain and have held up beautifully.
Our deck was hot and sunny….a combination that did not bode well for spending time out there. Especially because I am not a fan of sweating. We had a rickety pergola that the previous owners had installed but the slats were so far apart that it did not do much in terms of providing shade. Oh yeah we also installed lights when we moved in for some ambiance. I still love the light set, but our installation method…..well let’s just say it was straight and rigid. Not exactly evoking feelings of summer casual fun. Behold the before-
But how could we get some shade without adding a roof or another layer the the questionably stable pergola? Ultimately we would like to have plants climb it and provide shade, but that will take years. And patience is not one of my virtues.
And then when I was admiring the famous drop cloth curtains I had an idea. Why couldn’t we use cheap paint tarps as the canvas to cover the pergola with? Brilliant!
So I head to the nearest home improvement store and bought two 4x15 drop cloths.
I worried that if I left them this size that rain and wind could have negative consequences. So I sliced them in two and did a quick seam in heavy duty thread. No measuring or preciseness…..I cut where they were folded. I am not fast on the sewing machine and got four done in in 35 minutes.
Then I added two grommets on each end to attach to the pergola. Again this step did not take very long at all.
With the husbands help, we took down the lights and wove the four strips of drop cloth into the pergola all the way across. They were attached with screws through the grommets that can easily be taken down in the winter. An “above” pic from the window.
And at night…
The table is now shady and we can pretend we are in a fun restaurant when we are just eating in our own backyard. It would have been easy to add another two strips to bring the shade to the end of the pergola…..but you see that green tarp?
That would be the BBQ and I do not think flame and canvas are a good mix even in the name of style.
The entire project cost less than $50 and a 2 hours of time. Will it fade…..yes but I do not care as a lighter color will still work. Will it last 20 years….no but it was cheap and easily replaceable.
Well worth it for some shade and ambience in my opinion. And even if you do not have a pergola in your backyard, drop cloths could still be used on other structures or even between a couple of poles. Who knew that they could be so multi-functional?