Shade cloth is a type of mesh that gardeners use, especially in very hot and dry climates. They stretch the shade cloth over a frame and it protects the plants from the sun's burning rays. Shade cloth comes in different densities from 50 percent to 90 percent shade. Purchase the type of shade cloth you need, then cut and sew it to the necessary size to fit your frame. If you are not a gardener, you can still sew a piece of shade cloth to make an awning for your porch or patio for an instant shaded area.

Step 1

Measure your frame to get the dimensions necessary for your finished shade cloth. Add 6 inches all the way around to accommodate for the casing if you are going to insert the poles of your frame. (Purchase rolls of shade cloth from the local hardware store in 6, 10 or 12 feet widths. Purchase from an on-line source and the company will weave it to the exact measurements you need.) Sew more than one length together if necessary to get a width to fit your frame.

Step 2

Cut out your shade cloth to the necessary measurements. You can use scissors, or you could use a soldering iron to cut the cloth. The soldering iron slightly melts the cloth edges, preventing the cloth from fraying.

Step 3

Sew all pieces of the shade cloth together if your frame is wider than one width of the shade cloth. Overlap the selvage edges of the shade cloth and sew a double seam on the selvage edges to give the seam extra strength.

Step 4

Make pole casings, if necessary, to fit your frame. Fold the ends of the fabric in 3 inches and again another 3 inches to fit 2-inch diameter poles. Use clothespins or masking tape to hold the shade-cloth seam in place; regular sewing pins will not work, because they slip through the holes in the mesh.

Step 5

Set your sewing machine to a triple stitch, which you would normally use for stretchy knit-type fabrics.

Step 6

Sew one seam the entire length of the pole casing fold removing the clothespins as you sew. Move over quarter inch and sew another seam to create a double-seamed stitch for the casing, which gives the shade cloth more strength.

Step 7

Attach the shade cloth to your frame. Use the pole casing and special shade cloth clips if you have a metal or plastic frame, or simply use staples to attach the shade cloth if you have a wooden frame.