Devon LivingIssue #06
Made for the shade
Innovative sunshades for your home and garden made from up-cycled boat sails.
During the summer of 2012, Tamar Sailmakers found that work in the sail loft had slowed up, as it traditionally always does for sail makers at this time of year. Owner, Jamie Watts, was in the workshop wondering what he could do to keep his staff busy, when a customer got in touch and asked if Jamie could make him a sail shade for his garden – having been unable to source a bespoke solution elsewhere. This was the inspiration Jamie needed to set up Sail Shades Direct and since then the summer months have been spent developing and building sail shades for a wide range of clients, across various locations.
“from the town house court yards of Totnes to the really exposed balconies of Salcombe we will look at any job big or small”
Jamie has been working with fabrics as a sail and cover maker since he was 17: “the academic route just wasn’t for me,” explained Jamie, “I wanted to be outside working, creating things and dealing with people. I’ve worked across the south west and internationally, including sail making in both Asia and Europe.” With nearly 14 years’ know-how of specialist marine fabrics, Jamie offers a huge wealth of experience. In 2017, Jamie was lucky enough to be approached by the family run Italian company, Giulio Barbieri, which has been offering a range of both fixed and retractable systems for outside spaces since the 1990s. “I have visited the factory in northern Italy several times and we work closely together to create new solutions or improve on existing designs, specifically for the UK climate,” says Jamie.
The team offers a range of shade solutions from sail shaped sunshades through to fabric roof conservatories and Jamie and his team have now installed lots of these systems across the West Country. However, living and working in this area can often throw up some unique and awkward places that a client is trying to either shade or keep dry, but this doesn’t faze Jamie. “We build all of the sail shades in our small production loft just outside Plymouth. As specialists in bespoke solutions we love a challenge – from the town house court yards of Totnes to the really exposed balconies of Salcombe we will look at any job big or small. Our mission is to deliver bespoke and standard shading solutions for both commercial and residential customers, whether they be in the West Country or further afield.”
DID YOU KNOW?
The cost for a fabric-roofed conservatory is considerably less than for a traditional glass one; they are much less intrusive to install and all of the frames come with a five-year warranty.
Check out our competitions page for a chance to win a bespoke sail shade worth £250!
"from the town house court yards of Totnes to the really exposed balconies of Salcombe we will look at any job big or small"