Established over 15 years

Shaded Nation

Shaded Nation – Shade Sails

How to use a garden sun shade in winter

One of the main reservations people have about installing a shade structure in their garden is what they will do with it in the winter months.

This is understandable, particularly in countries like the UK where sunshine can be restricted to just a few months of the year.

However, such fears are unfounded. If you buy the right shade – like the ones we provide at Shaded Nation – you’ll be investing in a quality product that can be used all year round.

To prove this point, we’ve listed just a few of the possible winter uses for one of our products below.

Shade Sails in Garden

How to use a garden sun shade in winter

Shelter
The obvious use for a shade sail in the winter is as a means of shelter from the elements. Whether it’s wind, rain or snow, these structures can provide a protected spot that allows you to continue enjoying being out in the garden.

Smoking area
If your family contains a smoker, a shade structure can provide a handy spot under which they can smoke. It’s advisable for smoking to be carried out in the open air as it’s proven that inhaling second-hand smoke can lead to serious health problems. Smoking under a shade structure will help to protect the health of the entire family.

Special occasions
Whether it’s Bonfire Night or new year’s eve, there are a number of special occasions that occur in the winter months that call for people to spend time outside in the garden. A shade structure provides a sheltered spot in which friends and family can watch the bonfire or a fireworks display from a safe distance.

Sun safety
The main feature of our sun shades is that they provide up to 98.8 per cent protection from the sun’s harmful UV rays. Obviously, avoiding sunburn is much less of a concern in the winter, but it is still possible to get burnt at this time of year, especially if you have pale skin that is particularly vulnerable.

Installing a shade structure allows you to err on the side of caution and enjoy being outside regardless of what the sun is doing.

Five reasons to choose a DIY shade sail

Are you a DIY enthusiast? Whether it’s painting and decorating or fixing a leaky tap, there’s something immensely satisfying about doing it yourself.

If you are the type who likes to get their hands dirty, we’re the company to come to, as we stock a range of DIY shade sails that will be just perfect for you. Here’s a rundown of five of the benefits of this product.

Budget 
One of the main advantages of DIY is cost. Doing something yourself is nearly always cheaper and that certainly applies to our shade sails. You can purchase one of these excellent products for as little as £52 and won’t have to pay any installation costs whatsoever.

This low cost doesn’t mean we skimp on quality however. We pride ourselves on only stocking the best shades on the market and all our products combine robust sun protection, style and durability.

Shade Sails in Garden

Five reasons to choose a DIY shade sail

Ease of installation 
You’d be surprised at just how easy our structures are to install and, provided you follow all of the instructions, you can have your shade up and ready to use within just a few hours of getting started. We know that any DIY task is much easier with proper guidance and have decided to go one step further by providing a free shade sail installation video for everyone who buys one of our products. Click here to take a sneak peak.

Flexibility
Not sure you want a shade sail structure all year round? Concerned about what will happen in bad weather? Well, don’t worry. Our DIY shades are semi-permanent, meaning you can take them down and reassemble at a later date when necessary.

Maintenance 
Another thing that might surprise you about our shades is just how little maintenance they require. We recommend regular re-tensioning to ensure strength and durability, but other than that all you need to do is give the structure an occasional wash with a hose and mild detergent.

Choice 
They say variety is the spice of life and here at Shaded Nation we couldn’t agree more. We’ve plenty of colours, shapes and sizes for you to choose from and the only challenge is managing to pick just one!

The five things you need to know about Shaded Nation

There’s a lot of shade sail companies out there and all of them claim to offer the best service, products and prices.

This is all well and good, but it does make things tricky for you the customer when you need to decide which company to go for.

Here at Shaded Nation, we genuinely believe we are the best in the business and think our products and service are proof of this.

So, if you’re currently trying to make a decision about which shade sail company to go for, here are five things you should know about us before making your choice.

The five things you need to know about Shaded Nation

The five things you need to know about Shaded Nation

The product 
We are the authorised UK distributor and installer of Shade Sail World products. We sell these shades because they are simply the best on the market, offering the ideal combination of the latest technology, style, durability and affordability.

Experience 
We’ve been in the shade sail business for years and like to think we know a thing or two about it. Our expert team have seen all there is to see about sun shade structures and that expertise serves to really enhance the service we offer.

Service
Having a quality product can only take a company so far. Customers need to be given an excellent level of service and we do our very best to tick that box. Whether it’s providing a complete project management service or giving some advice on how to re-tension a shade structure, you’ll find us helpful, committed and polite.

Flexibility
Our lives seem to be getting busier with every passing year and it can be difficult to fit everything in. With this in mind we try to make our service as flexible as possible, with online and offline payment, a finance plan and a delivery service that is often available next-day.

Guarantees
You don’t just have to take our word for the quality of our products and services, we guarantee it. All of our shade structures are covered by a ten-year or five-year guarantee, so you know you’ll be investing in a product that’s built to last.

How to turn your garden Al Fresco

There’s something oh so continental about eating outdoors.

Enjoying some excellent food and drink in the open air with the sun shining down is one of life’s simple pleasures and it’s no surprise many people are desperate to recreate the Al Fresco dining experience in their own garden.

But how can you create the perfect outdoor eating environment in your own home? Read on for some of our top tips.

Setting
If you want to take your garden Al Fresco, it just won’t do to use the same old table and chairs you’ve had in the garden for years. Investing in a new stylish set will enhance the dining environment no end and make the whole experience more enjoyable.

Tables and chairs are the essentials, but there are other ways you can improve the setting of your outdoor dining area. Take lighting for example – effective use of light is one of the best ways to create an ambience and setting up an attractive light display in the garden can make you feel as if you’re spending the evening in a classy French or Italian restaurant rather than your own home.

Stay sheltered 
Of course, the one thing that holds Al Fresco dining back in the UK is the weather. Our climate is famously unpredictable and you’ll want to make sure your Al Fresco space is sheltered from the elements.

One of the best ways to achieve this is through a shade sail. When installed over your dining area, this structure will provide an attractive and practical means of shelter.

You’ll do most of your outdoor dining in the summer months when the sun is shining. A shade sail will keep you cool and you won’t need to worry about getting burnt. It will also provide protection against any wind and ensure you stay dry in the event of a brief shower.

Order your shade sail today and get ready to take your garden Al Fresco!

How to improve your garden this year

So, 2018 is underway and this is the time of year when many of us make new year’s resolutions that we hope will improve our lives over the next 12 months.

These can be anything from losing weight to giving up smoking. However, it’s likely there are a fair few people across the UK, and indeed the world, whose resolution will be to improve their garden.

So many gardens are left neglected and underused and a great way to make the most of 2018 is to turn your personal outdoor space into a pleasant environment in which you’ll be able to spend some quality time all year round.

How to improve your garden this year

How to improve your garden this year

But what can you do to improve your garden? Read on for a few of our top tips.

Greenery 
We’ve got green fingers here at Shaded Nation and love to see gardens with a wide range of plants. Whether it’s flowers, trees or planting your own vegetables, there’s plenty of things you can grow to bring a bit of greenery to your home.

Planting can be surprisingly fun and may even help you fulfil some other new year’s resolutions like losing weight!

Sitting and shelter
To make the most of your garden, you’ll need a place to sit and enjoy being outdoors. Investing in some garden furniture will allow you to do this and you’ll be able to have meals outside and invite friends and family over for Al Fresco dinner parties in the summer months.

Installing a shade sail structure will ensure your seating area remains protected from the sun and other elements.

Keep it wild
One of the best things about having a garden is that it can bring a little bit of the natural world into your own home. Whether it’s birds and butterflies or hedgehogs and foxes, you’d be surprised how much wildlife can be attracted to your outdoor space.

Keeping just one small corner of your garden ‘wild’ will help to boost your chances of seeing animals. All that’s required to do this is to allow natural plants to grow and leave the area as undisturbed as possible.

Consider a carport

Are you a car lover? If so you’ll want your treasured vehicle to be kept as safe and secure as possible.

However, this can sometimes be difficult, especially if you don’t have a garage in which to keep your car. If this problem applies to you, why not invest in a carport?

Our shade sails are an easy and affordable way to install one of these structures, which will provide your vehicle with some important protection.

 Consider a carport

Consider a carport

As the name suggests, the primary role of our products is to provide shade from the sun. Keeping your car out of direct sunlight will help to ensure it is cool for when you need to take a drive, as there’s nothing worse than getting into a stiflingly-hot vehicle when it’s already warm outside.

A shade-based carport will also provide your vehicle with protection from the rain and wind, which will reduce the chances of its paintwork and exterior being damaged.

Speaking of exterior damage, a carport will also give shelter from the scourge of motorists everywhere – bird mess. There are few things more annoying than heading out the car and finding it covered in horrible white spots. Using one of our shade structures as a carport eliminates this problem.

There are the main benefits of opting for a carport, but there’s a fair few other things you may find helpful as well. It can be used to store items that need protection from the elements and can even double up as place to sit out of the sun’s glare when the car isn’t present.

What’s more, a carport could also boost the value of your home. A property that has somewhere sheltered to keep a vehicle will be more appealing than one without and this could help you when trying to sell your home.

If you’d like to know more about how a shade sail could be used as a carport, feel free to get in touch with us.

What to consider when designing a children’s playground – part one

A common use for our shade sail structures is to provide cover for children’s playgrounds at schools, nurseries and other locations.

With this in mind, we’ve decided to put together some blogs looking at the top things you should consider when designing a new play area for kids.

 

What to consider when designing a children's playground - part two

What to consider when designing a children’s playground – part one

Safety
When creating a children’s playground the primary concern must always be the health and wellbeing of the youngsters and there are a few things to consider if you are going to provide a safe environment.

Take flooring for example – this needs to be soft and smooth to reduce the chances of children getting hurt should they fall. Specific playground surfaces made of either rubber or tiles can be purchased, while artificial grass is also a good, low-maintenance option.

Other things to think about safety wise include ensuring none of the playground equipment has sharp edges and that anything that requires climbing – such as slides – have the necessary rails in place to minimise the risk of children falling.

Shelter
Another way to secure the safety of a playground is by ensuring it is sheltered. On a summers day this will prevent kids from being at risk of sunburn and sunstroke, while it will also ensure metal playground equipment stays cool, as these items can become surprisingly hot when exposed to direct sunlight.

Shelter will keep the rain of the playground and this reduces the chances of the environment becoming slippery, which can easily lead to accidents. Furthermore, protection from the elements will mean playground equipment lasts longer and requires less maintenance.

Many schools opt for our shade structures as a means of providing this shelter due to their combination of high-level protection, durability and affordability. We supply post protectors, which can be used to ensure there is no risk of children hurting themselves by colliding with the steel posts used to support the shade.

You can see an example of how a shade sail structure can be used for a playground here.

Why you should opt for a commercial grade shade sail

Commercial customers make up a very important part of our trade here at Shaded Nation.

Whether it’s schools and nurseries, or shops and restaurants, we are used to undertaking large-scale products all the way from design through to installation.

As commercial clients are so important to us, we offer a product that is specifically manufactured with this type of customer in mind.

Why you should opt for a commercial grade shade sail

Why you should opt for a commercial grade shade sail

Our commercial grade shades are the best on the market and the perfect addition to your business, school or property. Here is a quick rundown of some of the main benefits of this product.

All the mod cons
Our commercial structures are more than just a sun shade – they use all of the latest innovations to provide the greatest level of protection, reliability and durability available.

The UV-stablised high density polyethelyne fabric we use is rot resistant and won’t absorb moisture. High quality double-lock stitch construction minimises the chances of a tear occurring, while colour-keyed seatbelt edge webbing provides extra security.

Meanwhile, tap yarn is weaved into our shades, offering excellent UV protection that can block up to 98.8 per cent of the sun’s harmful rays. These are advanced features you just won’t find in a bog-standard sun shade.

Truly bespoke
Our commercial grade shades are fully bespoke, meaning you get the exact structure you need. We are happy to work to your individual requirements and will provide a complete project management service to guide you through the process.

Pretty much any size or shape you can think of can be manufactured and there’s 14 different colours to choose from.

Built to last
Buying of our commercial shades is an investment for the future. These structures have a life expectancy of between ten and 15 years meaning they easily pay for themselves over the course of time.

In the unlikely event that something does go wrong, the first ten years are covered by a full warranty.

Want to know more? Find the full specifications for our commercial shades here.

What to consider when designing a children’s playground – part two

If you read part one of our blog about designing a children’s playground, you’ll know that safety and shelter should be your top concerns.

However, once these boxes have been ticked, you can turn your attention to the next most important part of a playground – fun.

What to consider when designing a children's playground - part two

What to consider when designing a children’s playground – part two

After all, the purpose of a playground is to allow children to enjoy themselves in the open air and you want to give them as much opportunity to do so as possible. Exactly how you do this is largely dependent on space and budget, but here’s a few tips you might find useful.

The first thing you need to consider is just who exactly will be using the playground. If it will be limited to a particular age range that makes things a lot easier as the area can be tailored towards the group’s specific needs.

A mixed age range is trickier as you need to cater for all children, but don’t want kids to come into contact with equipment that isn’t suitable for their age. In this case, it may be advisable to construct some sort of fence or barrier that will be used to keep children in the right area for their age.

When it comes to equipment, the classics are always a good place to start. Swings, slides, roundabouts and climbing frames come in a variety of sizes that are suitable for a wide range of ages and kids just can’t get enough of them.

If you don’t have the space for large playground equipment or can’t stretch your budget that far, there’s plenty of more affordable options you can go for.

Sand pits are great for younger children and are reasonably inexpensive to install. What’s more we can even provide a custom-made sand pit cover.

Another cheap way to make a playground fun is drawing a hopscotch design on the ground, or you could go one step further and draw an entire board game like snakes and ladders. This will take a little bit of effort, but it won’t cost much and kids will love it.

Skin cancer treatment named Drug Discovery of the Year

We’re passionate about sun safety here at Shaded Nation and were pleased to hear a new skin cancer treatment was named the British Pharmacological Society’s (BPS) Drug Discovery of the Year on December 19th (2013).

GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) was awarded the prize for its drug trametinib, which has been produced to treat malignant melanoma – one of the worst forms of skin cancer.

Skin cancer treatment named Drug Discovery of the Year

Skin cancer treatment named Drug Discovery of the Year

Trametinib works to halt the advance of the disease and the BPS said it has brought hope for skin cancer sufferers and their patients.

Dr Ann Haye, BPS fellow and chair of the committee that judged the award, stated: “Trametinib was distinguished by its novel translational pharmacology, but undoubtedly the judges were also impressed by the GSK team’s ambition to address the impact of malignant melanoma on the lives of so many patients and their families.”

She described trametinib as a “first-in-class medicine” for the treatment of this “devastating disease”.

The development of this product is good news and hopefully it will help the thousands of people who suffer from skin cancer each year in the UK.

According to the BPS, there are 12,000 new cases of malignant melanoma annually in Britain. Around 2,000 people die as a result of the condition each year and this is more than any other form of skin cancer.

Malignant melanoma is the third most common disease in the 15 to 39 age group and is caused by overexposure to UV light, be it through natural sunlight or tanning beds.

That so many people are affected by this condition is upsetting, as you can easily reduce your chances of contracting it by taking just a few simple precautions when out in the sun.

Sticking to the shade when possible, covering your skin and applying suntan lotion to any exposed areas will go a long way to keeping you safe and if everyone could do this, instances of the disease would be dramatically reduced.