Times are changing whether we like it or not. More people are using their homes as school headquarters, office Zoom retreats, preschools, eateries, and craft venues. Businesses are headed into winter and desperately need places for people to dine or shop under cover. Home and business owners are eagerly seeking usable space for everything from a homework nook to a simple respite from the chaos.
Need a Solution for Extra Space?
It’s time to design your own escape. If you are struggling to accommodate extra family members, co-workers, and patrons to your business or diners in your restaurant, consider adding an enclosure onto your home or business. It will add valuable space, privacy, protection and flexibility. We design enclosures to be easily removed, opened, rolled up or even fixed in place. Create a high functioning canvas enclosure with a little creativity and help from The Canvas Works.
We want you to enjoy your space all year round. Rain, cold, wind, sun, smoke and even dreaded Covid-19 could hinder our ability to fully enjoy our outdoors spaces. Creating an area that is enclosed is a fabulous way to get extra space and stay protected while still enjoying the outdoors.
What is a Canvas Enclosure?
Before we start, it is important to understand what we mean by an enclosure. Officially for our purposes, it is an outdoor area with a structure that is sealed off with canvas. Essentially, it is an improvement to any open-air area by enclosing and hence protecting you from the elements and allowing you to enjoy an indoor-outdoor experience.
What Can I Enclose?
- Under a porch
- A restaurant patio
- Cafe seating on the street
- An existing pergola, arbor or gazebo or shade structure
- A side alley or stairwell
- A home patio or deck
- A pool house
- A porch
- Floating home
- Grocery store produce or plant section
- And even a camper van if you want to be mobile
Pre-Made vs. Custom Enclosures
Conventional enclosures are usually standard sizes and require assembly. You can easily purchase a pre-fabricated tent or pavilion but they typically are not fully enclosed and may not be the proper size or fit for your space. Getting a custom enclosure allows you to design exactly to the needs of your home or business whether it is a unique size, complicated structure or challenging shape.
Establish an Enclosure Style That Works for Your Space
Whether you are adding one wall to close off a three-sided structure or enclosing an entire addition, we will help guide you on an overall style depending on the purpose of your enclosure. Some enclosures are simply set in place for protection of an exposed area. Other enclosures are intended to be adjustable and enjoyed year round. You might need a covered and enclosed space for the outdoor produce section or your grocery store or you might just need a few detachable canvas walls to keep out wind and rain. Either way, many options are available to accommodate your needs.
Different Types of Enclosure:
A Fixed Enclosure – An enclosure that is designed to be attached and stay in place without the need for removal on a regular basis. It can be created for storage, winterizing an outdoor area or enclosing a structure that does not require frequent access.
Fully Removable Enclosure – An enclosure fabricated and designed to be taken down when appropriate. It typically would be attached or secured with easy-to-use hardware for ease of set up and take down.
Fixed but Adjustable – The most common enclosure, an adjustable version is fabricated to withstand the elements by being attached to the structure but intended to be opened up. This type of enclosure is a great option for most projects because it allows for flexibility. The base enclosure is fixed but designed to be opened for good weather or provide viewing with clear vinyl windows. It is great for spaces like a restaurant patio or a backyard pool house.
Many options available for this type of enclosure include:
- Zippered windows or doors
- Rolled fabric panels or vinyl windows
- Retractable roof covers
- Pulley systems
- Twist or snap off panel
A Site Visit is Critical
Now that you have determined you would benefit from a custom enclosure, a site visit is a critical first step. Typically, enclosures are created from existing structures that can be converted into an all season room with Sunbrella fabric panels and clear vinyl windows. With a visit to your location, our expert staff can determine all the details of the design and help you be on your way to enjoying delightful extra space in your residence or business. It’s especially important to have a full assessment of your needs and aesthetic to determine an excellent design and a high functioning final product.
Fabrication Materials – Let’s Break it Down
Fabrication details will be determined by the design and needs of your space but some options are common and universal.
The industry standard for outdoor canvas applications is Sunbrella Marine fabric. For most businesses or homeowners, durable Sunbrella is the best option for all types of enclosures. It can be used as a solid panel or combined with other materials to create a fabulous outdoor space that is protected.
Different types of clear vinyl are available to create an enclosure that allows you to view the outside. Vinyl windows can create a greenhouse effect providing warmth to an enclosure. Panels can have ‘windows’ made of vinyl, or the entire panel can be clear with a small fabric border. You can be creative with the location and size of your vinyl inserts depending on what type of vinyl you want. For a fixed panel with a sturdy window, we recommend 34-40 ml stiff vinyl. If you want the option to roll a window or open it, we suggest a rolled vinyl. It is subtler and allows the user to open up their enclosure in good weather while still remaining protected.
Mesh / Screens:
In addition to rolled or static windows, enclosures can have a mesh or screen for an extra layer of protection from the elements.
There are many ways to attach an enclosure to a structure. Some of it depends on the structure and whether it is wood, cement or metal. Popular and easy to use hardware options include:
- Track and slide in welt for easy install/removal
- Grommets and bread ties
- Common sense (¼ turn twist lock) fasteners
- Bungee (stay-put fasteners and hooks)
- Velcro Strap
Installing and Securing an Enclosure
Will my enclosure withstand the elements? Will it hold up to wind and rain? It is very important to hire someone who knows how to properly install an enclosure. Careful installation will ensure that your enclosure stays in place and lasts for a long time. We take into account all the factors that can affect the function and longevity of your enclosure. Some popular ways to fasten and secure your enclosure are the following:
- Weighted PVC pipe placed in the hem to hold downward tension
- Tie backs
- Various fasteners
- PVC reinforcement on abrasion points
- Pad Eyes in the ground to clip and secure panels
Maintaining My Enclosure
Unfortunately, weather, dirt and debris and constant use can wear down the fabric and hardware of your enclosure. Proper cleaning and maintenance can extend the life of your canvas, vinyl windows and hardware. For more details about cleaning Sunbrella or Vinyl windows click here.
Why Choose The Canvas Works to Make my Enclosure?
We are experienced at what we do. Don’t settle for a run-of-the-mill product that won’t last. Get a custom fabricated enclosure to fit any design and meet your specific needs. Our enclosures are designed and fabricated with usability in mind and always include high quality fabric and hardware to ensure a long lasting product. Still not sure? Give us a call 415.331.6527 or go online we are happy to give you a free estimate to get you started on your next enclosure project.