Free Plans for Cedar Pergola
This cedar structure combines the look of traditional joinery with contemporary lines, all built with simple techniques.
The pergola I built for this article is what I would consider a builder-friendly timber-frame structure. It has all the charm of a traditional timber-frame structure, but retains the sensible building methods that place it squarely in the comfort zone of most carpenters.
It’s worth noting that what you see here is a pergola meant to fit a specific situation, but that the lessons are more widely applicable, so they can be adapted to fit other aesthetics as well.
The look of this particular pergola leans towards an Asian aesthetic, which also happens to be the basis of the Arts and Crafts style. So, it made sense to build on this concept by including the look of traditional mortise-and-tenon joinery and clean, square edges. The contemporary feel came into play with the incorporation of some Asian design elements—subtle curves, recessed purlins, and crisp horizontal lines—which became a good opportunity to deal with crucial issues of proportion. Because the space demanded a fairly large structure, we worked hard to keep it looking well rooted with a sleek, airy feel for the upper portion, flowing down to a substantial base.