Awnings are a great addition to any home exterior, as they can add style and a fun punch of colour to an otherwise drab exterior wall. Functional awnings also provide shade for an outdoor seating area, and protect windows from excessive sunlight and strong wind and rain. If you've never shopped for awnings for your home before, note a few tips on how to select the right option, for both style and outdoor comfort.

Start with function

Do you want awnings to be functional, meaning that they offer shade and protection from the elements, or are they just decorative? If you're choosing functional awnings, note if fixed or retractable styles are better. A retractable awning gives you more flexibility over the area it covers, but these awnings need to be made of canvas or nylon, and you may prefer metal for a more traditional look and feel. If the metal awnings you want can't cover an entire patio or deck area, add an outdoor umbrella or other secondary shade feature, for maximum comfort in your outdoor space.


If you want awnings attached to your home just for some added style, consider the material and the framework of the awning as well. A metal awning with a very prominent, detailed frame can add lots of visual interest to your outdoor space, whereas a glass awning with a thin metal frame can look cleaner and simpler, and break up a long exterior wall without making the space seem cluttered and busy.

If you do choose metal, you have many options for its appearance; copper can blend well with a brick home, whereas a powder-coated black or grey aluminium awning can be the best choice against a white home. Glass can also be tinted and coloured; choose a rosy red tint for a red brick home, or a frosted glass to blend well with aluminium siding that is painted a grey shade, to complement a modern decor and style.


When choosing fabric awnings, note that wide stripes are very traditional, but also very casual, and they might look a bit outdated. A solid colour fabric can be more modern, but consider carefully the colour you choose. Avoid a dark colour against a dark home exterior, as this can make the space look muddy and dull. Note outside features, such as patio pavers or a timber deck, and choose an awning fabric that would blend well with their colours.