Fabric shade structures can provide both practical protection and colorful, whimsical touches in many important areas around schools and other centers for children. These comparatively inexpensive, freeform structures consist of supportive steel posts that support the fabric, steel, and cable frame of the shade, so they can be designed to fit and define any space and shaped to fit any décor theme. The fabric selections offer a range of protection from sunlight and weather, and the finishes for the posts and frames and the colors of the shades and sails support any atmosphere you might want to create or enhance.

Shape, Space, and Color

Because they are freeform structures, fabric shades and sails can be designed to fit perfectly into irregularly shaped spaces, and because only posts, a frame, and fabric are used to create the structure, it is less expensive to create shelters with unusual, custom-designed shapes. If you have a larger space, try two or more shades or sails at different heights in contrasting or closely related colors. Shades and sails can even be sloped to create a more playful, airy look. Children can benefit from the shelter provided without feeling restricted within walls while still getting fresh air.

You can use shades and sails to shelter an outdoor classroom, a seating area, bleachers  for watching outdoor sports or performances put on by students , an area for reading or playing board games or other games outdoors when it might be too hot for more active play, an outdoor eating area, or the areas where students are dropped off and picked up at the beginning and end of the school day as teachers and other staff members supervise.


Don’t let your students get burned on your playground equipment. Slides can get upto 160 dgree Shades and sails obviously provide shaded areas which will be upto 15 degrees cooler than areas that are exposed to directly to the sun. The colors chosen will NOT affect how cool the space is.

The sails and shades are made of  high-density polyethylene mesh (HDPE). This fabric can block as much as 96 percent of the sun’s UV rays, and it can provide varying degrees of protection from the weather as well as harmful UV rays.

Shades and sails readily come to mind as shelters for people from heat, sun, and maybe even rain, but they also provide cooling shade for playground equipment so that children can have the advantage of playing outdoors under a wider range of conditions without worries about burns from equipment that has become too hot. In addition, using sails and shades to protect outdoor playgrounds, tables, and seating from sun and weather may prolong the life of these structures.

Side panels with tie-backs can be added to shade structures to provide more protection from wind and rain and further extend the use of outdoor areas.


Custom designs can be created through the use of 3D/CAD modeling. The model also is used for a preliminary analysis of the design to ensure that the structure is stable and that the design will not allow the fabric to be overstressed or allow water to pond on the fabric. This model also helps determine the size and connections needed for the steel posts and cables and the weight of the various components. This information is then used to produce an estimate of the cost of the finished structure to be certain it is feasible and within budget.

Custom shades and sails extend the use of outdoor play, dining, and seating areas during hot or rainy weather; protect students, faculty, and staff from heat, UV rays, wind, and rain when they are in drop-off and pick-up areas as well as other outdoor areas; and provide life-extending protection for the playground equipment, tables, and seating in these outdoor areas. These freeform sails and shades can be designed to fit into even the most irregular spaces, and the shapes that can be created together with variations in the heights, slopes, and colors of individual sails adds interesting architectural elements to the space that is covered. Durable sails and shades represent an affordable investment that protects students, faculty, staff, and outdoor equipment while extending the use and enjoyment of a school’s outdoor areas.

Our commercial sails and structures are made in Tarpon Springs, Florida. We serve all 50 states and international markets. Please contact us for shipping quotes.

serve all 50 states and international markets. Please contact us for shipping quotes.