Make a shady cabana for the garden
Use PVC pipe to create a shady cabana for the garden and spend more time relaxing outdoors.
Make this shady cabana using PVC and ABS pipe and a few basic tools. You can build this cabana up to a size of around 2.5 x 3 metres, and add curtains to create a wonderful shady spot to relax outdoors. Any larger than this and you will need to incorporate a centre support along the length.
PVC pipe, 50mm diameter
ABS pipe, 60mm diameter
PVC fittings,  L-shape and  T-shape
Cement, sand and stone - for permanent mounting
PVC weld - for permanent mounting
Hacksaw or jigsaw
Tape measure and pencil
Find all the tools and supplies for this project at your local Builders Warehouse.
1. Make the frame for your cabana to fit the available space. Use a hacksaw or jigsaw (or Dremel DSM20) to cut two lengths of PVC pipe for the width of the top frame. Leave two pipes about 3 metres long for the length. Assemble the top of the frame by inserting a T-shaped fitting at each corner.
2. Cut four lengths of PVC pipe for connectors between the L and T joints. Insert one of these into the end of each L fitting, and fit it into the open end of each T - see photo above.
GOOD TO KNOW: For a tight fit lightly sand the cut ends of pipe before joining. If you want to make the installation a permanent feature, use PVC weld to secure all joints.
3. Cut four 40cm long pieces of ABS pipe for the cabana legs. Wrap a piece of masking tape around each pipe 30cm from bottom end.
4. To secure the cabana into the ground, dig four 30cm deep x 30xm wide post holes. The position of these holes will be determined by the finish size of the assembled cabana - so measure carefully.
5. Place a pipe leg in each hole and fill with cement mix to 30cm. Use the masking tape around the pipe as a guide and to ensure all legs are at equal heights.
GOOD TO KNOW: Allow the cement to cure for 2 to 3 days.
6. Cut four PVC pipes into 240cm uprights for the four corners. Cut four sections of leftover PVC pipe and slip into each L fitting at the base of the uprights. Lift the frame and slide each leg into the pipe sleeve in the ground.
7. At this stage you can use Rust-Oleum 2X to spray paint on the assembled frame, or you can leave as is.
You will need to disassemble the top to hang curtains. If you’re making your own curtains, you’ll need to create a 'pocket' at the top of each panel to slip over the frame. Simply fold the fabric over (making sure the resulting pocket will accommodate the diameter of the pipe to allow for the curtain to be pulled across the frame), then secure the pocket by using an iron and fusible tape or sewing machine.
GOOD TO KNOW: Make a narrower pocket at the bottom to allow for inserting chains to act as weights and hold the fabric down.