26 Budget DIY Backyard Shade Ideas

DIY custom shades for a pergola


These diy backyard shade ideas will keep you cool even as the temperatures climb. A beginner or advanced beginner can handle most of these straightforward projects. If you have some patience, you can also plant some trees that add shade to your backyard. It's a wonderful way to add some landscaping to your space and the big leaves of these trees will provide lots of shade once they get larger. If you're interested in quickly adding shade to your backyard to combat the sunny days ahead, read on for budget-friendly 26 ideas,

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    Picnic Table Pergola

    A pergola over a picnic table

    The Created Home

    This is such a smart way to provide some shade for a picnic or outdoor dining table. A small pergola-type structure is built into the wall of the house, covering the table and chairs. This budget project costs around $200 to build and you'll enjoy it for years.

    Picnic Table Pergola from The Created Home

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    Modern Pergola

    A modern wooden pergola in a backyard

    Lovely Indeed

    This stunning pergola will keep the whole family cool and create a backyard oasis right outside your door. This pergola is unique in that it takes up a corner of the yard making it a smart way to save space. Since you're building it yourself, it's a budget DIY backyard shade idea that's going to be worth every dollar.

    Modern Pergola from Lovely Indeed

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    Outdoor Pergola Curtains

    Outdoor pergola curtains

    A Beautiful Mess

    If you have a pergola you already have a nice shady place to sit and relax. Make it even shadier with these outdoor curtains designed especially for a pergola. Directions include how to customize it for the size of your pergola. Once they're up, you'll love the cozy place that makes your backyard feel like a vacation retreat.

    Outdoor Pergola Curtains from A Beautiful Mess

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    Deck Cabana

    A cabana on a deck

    Oh So Lovely

    The chic black and white-striped curtains look wonderful when placed around this pergola. They're made from a unique material that you'll need to see to believe. The pergola has built on top of a deck, making it perfect for giving shade to an existing lounge space.

    Deck Cabana from Oh So Lovely

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    Pergola Shade

    Shades weaving in and out of a pergola


    This pergola shade looks just like the expensive ones you can buy at the store. You'll make this one yourself out of canvas drop cloths. After the strips are cut and trimmed, you'll put them up. The spacing of the fabric is important to get a nice look. Finally, string lights are added to add some romance to the shade.

    Pergola Shade from Remodalaholic

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    Painted Patio Umbrella

    A painted patio umbrella

    Lovely Indeed

    Patio umbrellas give off a lot of shade and you can place it wherever you need it the most. They are most commonly placed on or by a table to give some shade while you're enjoying an outdoor meal, but you can really place them anywhere. This project has you buy an inexpensive white umbrella and use some paint to make it your own.

    Painted Patio Umbrella from Lovely Indeed

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    Hammock Chair With Pergola Top

    A pergola above a hanging chair

    Houseful of Handmade

    Use this budget DIY backyard shade idea to give yourself some relief from the hot sun. This hammock stand was built especially for a hammock chair with sturdy hooks for support. It has a pergola top to keep the person sitting in the chair cool and comfortable.

    Hammock Chair with Pergola Top from Houseful of Handmade

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    Canvas Tent

    An outdoor tent

    The Merrythought

    Here's a budget DIY backyard shade idea that you may have not thought of. Learn how to build a canvas tent so that kids and adults alike can gather in to get a reprieve from the hot sun. It's made out of canvas and branches, making it quick to set up, easy to use, and gentle on your wallet.

    Canvas Tent from The Merrythought

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    Copper Cabana

    A cabana made out of copper

    Home Made by Carmona

    This unique DIY cabana is made out of copper pipes, giving it a slightly industrial look that goes beautifully among the trees and bushes in this yard. You can use this cabana for some added shade wherever it's placed; put it over a table and chairs or some patio furniture.

    Copper Cabana from Home Made by Carmona

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    Slat Wood Privacy Fence

    A white slat wood privacy fence

    A Beautiful Mess

    A privacy fence not only provides some much-needed peace and quiet but also gives off some shade. It's made of wood slat lattice, giving it a modern streamlined look. These slats are too close to introduce climbing plants, but the slats are close enough together that they will provide a good amount of shade.

    Slat Wood Privacy Fence from A Beautiful Mess

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    Easiest Outdoor Curtains

    Outdoor curtains in a backyard

    Jessica Welling Interiors

    Here are some outdoor curtains that are made for a freestanding gazebo but you can use the project to learn how to build and attach curtains to almost anything. Written and video tutorials are available to help you make the curtains.

    Easiest Outdoor Curtains from Jessica Welling Interiors

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    Grape Arbor

    A grape arbor

    A Piece of Rainbow

    An arbor is a small structure that adds shade to anything below. You can place seating underneath it or use it as a place to grow some vines that love the shade. For an arbor, this is a fairly large one that will give you lots of shade and enjoyment for years to come.

    Grape Arbor from A Piece of Rainbow

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    Outdoor Canopy

    A brown canopy


    Those fancy patio shade sails can be pretty expensive but they're really just a rectangle of fabric. Here you'll learn how to make your own to cover the size of space that you need to shade. This one is attached to the house and fence. It's a great budget DIY backyard shade that will impress all your guests.

    Outdoor Canopy from Zodirowe

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    Attached Patio Pergola

    A patio covered with a pergola

    Houseful of Handmade

    Here's another pergola you can build, and this one has the convenience of attaching it to the side of your house. A pergola paired with the house is going to give you some awesome shade. This outdoor oasis will feel like you've added a new room to your home.

    Attached Patio Pergola from Houseful of Handmade

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    Carport Canopy

    A canopy in a backyard

    Simple Made Pretty

    This clever budget DIY backyard shade idea only takes an hour or so to set up. It's simply a carport cover that's now being used as a canopy in the backyard. It provides a huge amount of shade, right over the dining table. Move it wherever you find that you need the most shade.

    Carport Canopy from Simple Made Pretty

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    Rainbow Pergola Shade

    A colorful pergola shade

    At Home With Ashley

    Here's a project perfect for adding shade and color to your yard. This is a customizable project because you'll be dyeing the fabric panels your desired color. You'll need to be able to sew in a straight line to make these panels that are then spaced out within the top of the pergola.

    Rainbow Pergola Shade from At Home With Ashley

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    Covered Deck

    A covered deck

    Catz in the Kitchen

    Take a simple concrete slab and turn it into something beautiful when you add this covered deck. It provides a ton of shade and really upgrades your whole backyard. It's built right off the back door, making it feel like an extension of the house.

    Covered Deck from Catz in the Kitchen

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    Raised Bed Garden Arch Trellis

    A shady garden arch

    Delia Creates

    A garden arch is another way you can use plants for shade. Cattle panels are shaped into an arch and then the climbing vegetables and flowers weave in and out of the openings. This would make a great backyard garden that you could watch flourish and grow.

    Raised Bed Garden Arch Trellis from Delia Creates

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    Outdoor Daybed With Canopy

    A white daybed with a canopy

    Little House on the Corner

    Here's a daybed that has a canopy over it, a slat privacy fence, and curtains on the side. It will give you some great shade and you won't ever want to leave such a comfy place. If you want the feeling of being in a cabana at a high-end resort, this is the project for you.

    Outdoor Daybed With Canopy from Little House on the Corner

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    Hammock Stand With Floating Deck

    A hammock stand

    Woodshop Diaries

    If you're missing shade trees for your hammock, don't worry, this tutorial will show you how to build a hammock stand complete with a floating deck and pergola-style top. It can be placed anywhere in your backyard and would fit nicely in an underutilized corner.

    Hammock Stand with Floating Deck from Woodshop Diaries

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    Backyard Arbor

    A white garden arbor

    At Home With Ashley

    Build an arbor for your backyard and you'll get just enough shade for a table and chairs or a bench. If you introduce vining plants to the arbor, they'll make their way in and out of the railings and top of the arbor. This will give you even more shade, making it a cool retreat.

    Backyard Arbor from At Home With Ashley

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    Easy Pergola Shade

    A shade on a pergola

    Studio DIY

    If you want to have some UV protection, you'll need a shade that's made out of shade cloth. Here it's been used as a shade for a pergola, and not only does it feel great, but it also looks great. This no-sew project will only cost you about $175.

    Easy Pergola Shade from Studio DIY

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    Outdoor Canopy Bed

    An outdoor cabana

    Foxy Folksy

    This budget DIY backyard shade idea will have you feeling like you're somewhere way more exotic than your backyard. Start with a bed and then build a wooden frame around it. Then you'll just need to hang up some outdoor curtains for the back, sides, and front.

    Outdoor Canopy Bed from Foxy Folksy

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    Grommet Outdoor Curtains

    A covered pergola with outdoor curtains

    Centsational Style

    These outdoor curtains can be hung on just about any type of structure. When open, you can see out to your backyard, and when closed you get some privacy and shade. You could stay natural with the canvas look or paint the curtains with stripes or designs to reflect your style.

    Grommet Outdoor Curtains from Centsational Style

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    Garden Arch Arbor

    A wooden garden arch in a backyard

    Charleston Crafted

    This garden arch arbor is wider than your traditional arbor, giving you even more shade. It can be set anywhere in your backyard, but it would look great as an entrance into a garden or other part of the yard.

    Garden Arch Arbor from Charleston Crafted

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    Privacy Planter Trellis

    A black trellis privacy fence

    Centsational Style

    A privacy fence can be a great way to add some shade to a small area. This fence is built with slats close enough together that it provides some shade. Add in the vines, and it's a great place to sit and enjoy being out of the sun.

    Privacy Planter Trellis from Centsational Style