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Pergola Design Ideas: 21 Outdoor & Modern Inspiring Ideas

Outdoor living spaces have been growing in popularity amongst both home and business owners for the last few years. Everyone likes to have a place outside where people can gather, relax and simply enjoy the landscaping and scenery.

There are a lot of different ways to design an outdoor space. Some focus on the amenities and not on the definition of the space, while others may not be adding enough function to the design. One way to bring extra depth to your designs, while also enhancing outdoor spaces for your clients, is with a pergola.

Pergolas define spaces, while also adding shade and style to the area. Whether you’re designing a patio area for a home or you want a defining feature in the center of landscaping, check out these 21 pergola design ideas to gain some inspiration.


1. Double Level Pergolas



Many homeowners want both deck and patio areas added to their homes to gain the flexibility the duo brings for entertaining or for large families. This layout adds a pergola over the deck to bring some shade, while a second pergola below creates a second shaded area as well, so you’ll never want for space to entertain.


2. Attached Pergola Patio


Pergola Design

This design features two patios that wrap the back of the home. One section features seating directly in the sun, and the other provides a more private atmosphere. The attached pergola offers sun control and shade to the area, and also helps define and separate this area from the other.


3. Corner Attachment



Properties like this one, that feature a bump out on one section of the home, instantly create new possibilities for both landscaping and patio areas. By utilizing the corner where the two sections meet and move in different directions, you can install an attached pergola design that offers shade to the patio space, as well as complement the property’s style.


4. Simple Deck Cover



Many homeowners may find that they use and enjoy their new decks more if they have a little shade on hot, sunny days. By using an attached pergola like this one, you can help your customers ensure that their new deck is going to get the maximum amount of use. 


5. Outdoor Bump Out



This home also features a bump out and distinct corner between two sections. In this case, a large deck was designed and built into the area, which fills — and extends — the space. An attached pergola helps make it more cohesive with the rest of the home and less of an addition. It also adds some much needed shade for the space.


6. Substantial Definition


White Pergola Idea

This white pergola makes a beautiful statement, attached to the home and extending over the small, elevated patio. It features large, classic columns and decorative details that help make it a focal point in the design, as well as a functional feature by adding shade to the seating area.


7. Large Deck Shade



No need for an umbrella or to wonder whether you’ll be seated in the sun or shade with an attached pergola design that extends the length of the deck. This oversized deck and pergola frames a large seating area perfect for entertaining on a sunny day.


8. Classic Good Looks



This pergola has a classic design that not only matches the style of the home but also incorporates the posts from the deck railing between the columns. This kind of pergola design helps the entire structure blend together and create a cohesive, traditional look for the home.


9. Backyard Living Room – Backyard Pergola Ideas



The outdoor living room is one of the most desired additions to yards right now. This outdoor space features a fireplace and viewing screen, along with a seating area that is defined and shaded by a freestanding pergola. This helps add height to the entire patio, pulling the eye to the seating area and creating definition apart from the eating and grilling areas.


10. Freestanding Against the Home


Freestanding Pergola Against the HomeSource

Look quickly and you might assume this was an attached pergola. Look again, however, and you’ll see four distinct columns. While many people believe that freestanding pergolas are only for open spaces, they also work well with modest facades like this one, adding detail through the column legs and cover.


11. Backyard Centerpiece – Backyard Pergola Design Ideas



While gazebos are one of many elegant options for creating a structure in the backyard, using a pergola gives you a much more open view and appearance. You also get more usable space thanks to its square shape. Complemented by a stone path, with this pergola you’ve now created a beautiful eye-catching space.


12. Separate Areas



Multi-family properties like this one don’t do as well with a single, large structure. By including multiple smaller pergolas, you give people the option of using the shaded space together or apart. You also add more interest to the landscaping as a whole, creating a space that tenants will want to enjoy.


13. Extra Large Definition – Patio Pergola Ideas



This home has both a plain back exterior and a small patio. By using a freestanding pergola over the area, you add detail and interest, as well as visually enlarge the space. This makes the entire patio area look larger and more substantial. 


14. Mixed Columns Pergola Ideas



This patio is created using pavers, which are also used to create some small pillars. The pergola is able to make use of them by shortening the columns on that side to incorporate the pillars as part of the design. This makes for a more interesting and cohesive look for the area. 


15. Modern Pergola Design Ideas


Modern Pergola Design IdeasSource

While a lot of pergolas are classic and decorative in design, they don’t need to be in order to be effective or beautiful. This simple, modern pergola design idea is sleek and contemporary in style. It adds some nice contrast to the wooded area, but doesn’t compete with the scenery. 


16. Modern Attached Design – Attached Pergola Ideas



Sleek, contemporary buildings need sleek contemporary pergolas to match. This clean, crisp design adds shade and definition to the patio, complementing the back yard space.  


17. Additional Shade



This modern pergola features a top and back wall that offers a large degree of shade. A perfect way to provide privacy from the nearby road, as well as some additional shade when the sun angle is low. 


18. Center Deck Addition



There’s a lot going on with this deck in terms of detail and style, but one thing it was lacking was some shade. By adding a freestanding pergola to the center of the deck, it provides a designated space for seating and offers people a cool place to sit on a hot day, while still leaving room for grilling and entertaining. 


19. Low Deck Extension



This single-story house is simple in design, so attaching a pergola and deck right onto it might have overpowered it. By extending the wooden patio away from the house and into the yard, it gives the property room for a stand-alone pergola. This helps add some definition and structure to the yard, as well as shade to the outdoor space. 


20. Attached Deck Design


Attached Deck DesignSource

This home features a unique style of railing on the deck, which ties in perfectly with the attached pergola. The pergola has the same clean lines as the rest of the deck, and offers a way of breaking up the large space into different sections. 


21. Upper Story Deck



This second-floor deck has an attached pergola that acts as a roof extension (pergola roof) as it covers the entire deck. The columns match the supports for the deck itself for design cohesion, while helping to add some dimension and shade.


Get More From Your Projects


Offer your customers more with the inclusion of pergolas in your designs. Backyard pergolas are a great way to include definition, structure and shade in your work – all benefits that you or your customers not only want but will use every day.

Consult with Heartland Pergolas for assistance designing the perfect pergola for your space.

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