Sitting out on your porch or in your backyard soaking up the sun is pretty amazing and all, but what about when you want to relax away from the heat?
Once my husband and I realized we needed some shade in our outdoor area, it was my mission to find out how we could best achieve this goal.
I stumbled upon some beautiful pictures of pergolas and, the next thing I knew, I’d gathered 35 pergola cover ideas!
Today, I’m happy to be sharing them with you, so you can create your own shaded oasis!
Add Some Life!
A Touch Of Green
You’d be amazed at what a touch of plant life can do, especially right above your head! This simple yet elegant combo of climbing plants and pergola shade gives off such a rustic feeling, you’ll forget all your worries in a heartbeat!
Throw in a table for two and you may never want to go back inside again! Or, better yet, make your home just as cozy with the interior design ideas I found at deavita.net.
Go Big Or Go Home
There’s nothing like spending time with family and friends on a breezy day and no one said you can’t do it under a pergola with some plants! These thick, sturdy pillars and bushy roof would quickly have everyone both impressed and enjoying their time.
You can use this style to shade a larger area, particularly if you’re one to have company on the regular, where you kick back with your loved ones outdoors. Head over to westwingnow.it for some outdoor furniture inspiration.
For the ultimate green shade experience, this stunning design brings the forest right into your home! Using tall trees, the leaves and branches act like climbing plants, delivering a unique jungle effect.
This pergola cover design doesn’t only protect from the sun, but the density of the green can also shelter you from rain. This look would work best on a deck, as the elevation adds extra support. Check out diynetwork.com and their other cool pergola ideas for decks.
Play With Fabric
At first glance, you might think this is just a cute vintage fabric pergola cover, but it’s way more! If you love sitting in the rain, you’ll be happy to know this blue and white striped pergola roof also doubles as a rain cover!
Say hello to reading, lounging, or even working while listening to the sweet sound of the rain above you. I mean, why should outdoor life ever stop? Check out a couple of additional pergola rain covers at pergolagazebos.com.
Summon Your Inner Fashion Guru
If you’re into fashion, why not let it show in your outdoor area design? This is probably one of the most stylish pergola cover ideas I’ve seen lately. The folding pattern with the draping fabric on the sides is super unique and fashion-forward.
The white adds a sophisticated, chic feel and creates the illusion of a bigger space. You can even complete the look with some modern white outdoor furniture, as demonstrated by backyardmastery.com.
Make Smart Choices
Nothing will help you make the most of your time outdoors better than smart design choices and, when it comes to pergola cover ideas, this one’s perfect for all the practical folks out there!
The retractable fabric screen lets you enjoy the best of both the sun and shade. It’s also pretty handy if you’re tight on space. Building such a cover requires careful measurements — I let my husband worry about that!
Head over to lovelyving.com for more clever decor ideas.
Use Your Space
Whatever size your backyard is, you can rest assured there’s a pergola design out there for you. This particular look makes wonderful use of fabric to complement the small size of the pergola.
The light color adds an open feel to the structure, while the flared and tucked-in shape of the drapes creates an extra dimension. Minimal furniture is also useful to accent the pergola itself. Some lighting would go a long way, just look at the picks at decorrea.com.
A Dash of Colour
There’s no easier way to spice things up in your outdoor area than to mix and combine color. Instead of the conventional outdoor fabric colors, like white, beige, and other neutrals, go for the gusto and pick out some daring colors!
Fabrics with patterns or prints are also a fantastic choice to completely transform your pergola. Not only will you enjoy the shade, but you’ll also have something pretty to look at.
This can truly give your outdoor area a makeover — just look at how the folks at the-wilson-world.blogspot.com did it.
Have Some Privacy
A simple way to raise the level of privacy outdoors is to add screens or drapes as a cover to your pergola. This double-sided fabric design provides you with adequate shade, as well as the privacy you need.
This way you can read, lounge, or work, away from prying eyes. Check out tojagrid.com for more pictures of a pergola with two-shade sails and other pergola cover ideas.
Nice and Sturdy
Many people wonder if a pergola cover can be both stylish and sturdy. Well, I believe this double-decker style pergola cover just answered the question. The thick fabric you can see here shows no signs of future giving out.
A sturdy material, like canvas, is an excellent example of a tough, yet presentable fabric. Don’t forget to fortify the pergola corners with grids, to support the weight of the fabric. You can find an affordable selection at tojagrid.com.
Putting a cover on your pergola isn’t necessarily an expensive task. In fact, it can be as budget-friendly as you want!
When I saw this beautiful pergola cover, I immediately thought of how relaxing it must be to sit under it. The tightly packed bamboo does a great job of providing shade and it has a sort of romantic vibe.
Bamboo also doesn’t cost very much. Head to farmfoodfamily.com for more DIY low-budget pergola ideas.
Simple But Effective
It’s true that bamboo designs are generally simple, but behind such a plain style lies tremendous functionality. This pergola cover, for example, provides a high level of shade control and privacy.
You can adjust the folding bamboo sheets to let in as much sunlight as you want. Spreading them fully will also grant you some ‘alone’ space. You can see more privacy fence ideas at gratitude41117.com.
Less Is More
If you appreciate the little things, you’ll love this pergola cover. The basic aspect of the design encourages you to sit back and contemplate what matters in life. The bare posts are covered by a ‘slab’ of bamboo, forming a true minimalist haven.
The colors and furniture blend together seamlessly without overdoing it with details. ‘Less is more’ is the new trend these days! Check out chadmc.com for tips on creating a minimalist apartment.
Double The Dose
This pergola is a fine example of wood appreciation. The double-sided covers are stellar when it comes to both shade and privacy. The folks at homify.com offer more stunning architecture ideas.
Sometimes it’s best to stand back and let the wood reveal its magic. This spectacular scene is what happens when you use wood logs in their most basic form and trust nature’s taste.
The serene atmosphere, along with the shade, takes you right into an oasis experience — almost as if you’re in the desert! This design works just as well for gazebos. Head over to kalanibackyard.views4yu.ru for more trendy gazebo decorating ideas.
If you are not sure whether you have a pergola or a gazebo, read our post “Pergola Vs Gazebo”.
Lay It Neatly
How cute is this pergola design? First of all, the designer deserves major props for the color scheme! The blueish-green combined with the natural wood results in a modern style contrast that’s very popular nowadays.
The way the wooden bars are symmetrically arranged is both satisfying and pleasing to the eye. I also think the vintage light bulbs are a perfect addition that makes it feel that much cozier. You could also use strand lights, just look at how they did it at brinleybackyardjournal.chicloth.ru.
This one’s downright breathtaking! The top-notch craftsmanship shines through the outer curves of each wood plank and shows how they’re flawlessly assembled. The double-layer cover makes up for the wide gaps, delivering just as much shade as other pergola covers.
This design is great if you’re thinking of adding a fire pit since the smoke won’t be trapped in. You can see other ideas for pergola covered fire pits at backyardmagazinemaia.simidress.ru.
Wood All The Way
The clean lines and flawless finish bring this design to new heights of elegance. It’s also super cozy, giving off an inviting ‘homey’ feeling. Check out easypergolaplans.com for tips on maintaining wooden pergolas.
See Through The Roof!
Unblock The View
One of the greatest things about a transparent pergola is how you still get to keep your gorgeous view. This is the full package — you get the sunlight without the heat of its rays.
This fiberglass cover appears to add a significant amount of room while giving a futuristic kind of look. This open layout is truly alluring and you can find many others just as charming at frequence3.org.
Looking at this pergola designs with covers, I can’t help but feel jealous! Brett will surely hear about this one!
I absolutely love how this looks down to the last detail. The arrangement of the wooden planks is rather old-school yet cheerful and the white color choice further lights up the entire space. If you like this one as much as I do, head to housefulofhandmade.com for DIY steps!
Expand Your Space
If you face the challenge of working with limited space, one solution to make your pergola look bigger is to install a transparent roof. This type of cover eliminates that confining feeling that you might get with a regular wood or fabric cover.
This pergola cover is a mix of wood and transparent panels and presents a new direction of design, in which you can experiment with different textures. Check out trendhmdcr.com for more pergola roof ideas.
Best Of Both Worlds
Personally, I can relate to the pain of making decisions when it comes to landscaping. If I could, I’d have it all! However, I believe this particular design comes pretty close.
The half ‘n half construction lets you relish the shade as much as the light, all the while looking incredibly modern. It also resembles how some gazebos are built, which you can see more ideas on if you visit houseandhomereview.com.
A transparent roof paired with the color black, name a more iconic duo — I dare you! Well, you probably can think of a few, but in all seriousness, this combo does look quite gorgeous.
The dark black wood creates depth, while the opaque cover makes for a spacious feel. Overall, this is a unique, sophisticated design, one you don’t see every day. For more offbeat decor ideas, check out regardsetmaisons.blogspot.com.
Get Your Groove On
Channel Your Inner Artist
Your outdoor area is a perfect place to get artistic and play with unusual shapes or patterns. For example, this preppy pergola cover uses a corrugated roof.
It’s certainly out of the box, but this just adds to its beauty. Matching this design with a swing and a zig-zag rug makes it a whole lot more interesting. Find additional artistic tips for your pergola at homestre.com.
Stand Out With Your Pergola cover
A pergola can be used as an outdoor kitchen/bar. I can think of a few friends who’d be all over this design!
You can use corrugated metal all over your pergola and even include your shelves and counters. This would look marvelous on a gazebo, as well. Take a look at claridecor.com for more backyard gazebo designs.
Last Pergola Standing
If you’re on a budget, you’ll be pleased to know how sturdy and rigid corrugated roofs are. Corrugated metal is specifically made to last a long time, with extra strength and rigidity.
If you combine this cover type with the solid construction of a wooden pergola, you’ll end up with one durable pergola. If you’d like to look at more pictures of a pergola, check out pinterest.com.
Rock On: Metal Style
A cool way to decorate your pergola is by adding a metal roof. This design here is one of the most popular patterns of pergola cover ideas among metal enthusiasts
The square cutouts complement nearly all kinds of outdoor decor. It delivers a good deal of shading, while still managing to look mesmerizing. You can see more designs on trendhmdcr.com.
What do you do when you can’t decide between real flowers and a metal-based design? You go for metal flower cutouts of course!
This fabulous design allows you to enjoy the sturdiness of a metal roof, without ditching the outdoor plant element. You’ll even create patterned shade that resembles the same flower pattern as the metal screen. Read more on the materials at newjerseycoastalheritagetrail.com.
Another fascinating style that caught my attention, is this unique combination of geometric shapes that unite in an eye-pleasing, symmetrical way.
I think you could spend hours on end studying this pattern while thinking about life, without even realizing it. This pergola design also blends in nicely with a wide variety of surroundings. Find out more information at decorativescreensdirect.com.
Ever thought about using climbing plants on your pergola cover, only to back out in fear of not being able to properly care for them? Good news, this metal roof has got you covered!
This pattern will cast down shade that looks like maple leaves. You can enjoy a ‘natural’ shade experience without the plant part. Head over to visceralconcepts.com for more patterns.
Keep It Traditional With A Twist
A good old fashioned pergola cover can be all that your backyard needs, offering shade for all sorts of activities.
However, you and your family would really appreciate a pergola cover that slides. You can retract it to enjoy the sunshine, or expand it to kick back in the shade.
Think about it the next time you want a makeover for your patio, or just look at frequence3.org for inspiration.
Stay In Control
The best part about sliding roofs is that you have the ultimate say when it comes to controlling the shade and shine. This model, for example, is divided into multiple sections that you can choose to individually close or open at any time and pattern.
It’s a lovely, innovative concept that lets one family member sunbathe, while the other is shielded from the sun. Such an idea would be great for a gazebo, as well. You can catch more gazebo ideas at houseandhomereview.com.
As opposed to fabric or wood, another option is metal, in this case, aluminum. This can be a terrific choice if you’re not keen on doing regular maintenance.
Additionally, aluminum sliding roofs are highly durable and waterproof, meaning they can resist unpredictable weather conditions if you live in such a place. Find extra patterns and colors at archiproducts.com.
Give Shingles A Try
Pick An Elegant Style
A shingle roof is a total flip from all the previous ideas we talked about. This grand design is more on the luxurious side of the spectrum. Materials, like clay or slate, are used in building such roof shingles to make for extra longevity. The pitched roof drains water downwards.
A shingle roof pergola is an awesome idea for back porch designs. You can find more of those at homeinspirations.com.
Go Back To The Roots
If you’re feeling nostalgic, this wooden shingle roof may be exactly what you’re missing. The use of wood delivers a familiar retro vibe that can only be described as out of an old country movie.
It provides good shading, decent water protection, and will probably last over a decade. It’s a classic choice for covering decks, along with the other ideas available at popihome.com.
What Do You Think Of Our Pergola Cover Ideas?
Phew! That was exciting! I sincerely hope you enjoyed reading this list as much as I had fun researching it. I’ve always been deeply passionate about outdoor decor and landscaping, so looking for pergola cover ideas was certainly a treat!
As always, I’d love it if you shared your thoughts in the comments below and, if you found it useful, please feel free to pass this list on to your friends!