Parts of an Umbrella and Umbrella’s style

Canopy

(also: cover) This is the fabric with which the umbrella is covered, and is usually polyester. This is because polyester doesn’t change when stretched out in both wet and dry states. Used as well, however, are both nylon and cotton. In addition, plastics fabrics and clear PVC are employed.

Cap

(also: gilt cap) The cap rests above the notch on top of the umbrella canopy, and serves to divert water from the ferrule onto the canopy. In this way it prevents water from running down along the shaft. For further improving the impermeabiltiy in this area, a rosette made of the same fabric as the canopy is often situated between the canopy and the cap.

Coating

Almost all umbrella fabrics today are coated with Teflon. This renders the umbrella rainproof, and the fabrics are for the most part protected against soiling. The coating itself is not visible. The colors of the materials are maintained and the fabric retains its soft touch.

Duomatic

This is a push-button release system used on auto opening/closing models for opening the umbrella, and then closing it in the same fashion. After closing, the umbrella must be further pressed in by hand to create the required tension for the opening operation.

Ferrule

If a long umbrella is used for walking support it can be made slip-proof on flat surfaces by slipping on a ferrule made of rubber onto the end of the shaft. Wooden shafted umbrellas have a ferrule made of tough plastic, and very high-end umbrellas have a ferrule made of horn. All good long umbrellas have a ferrule made of slip-preventing nylon, which also prevents the umbrella from clattering when it’s set on the floor.

Flat umbrellas

On these pocket umbrellas the notch is formed such that when it is retracted the ribs pack flatly together. The umbrella doesn’t become smaller in this manner, but in some situations it is easier to put away (into a coat pocket, for example).

Frame

This includes all parts of the umbrella except the canopy and the handle. The 10-piece (more stable) or 8-piece variations refer to the number of ribs. Generally 8-piece frames are used for long and pocket-sized umbrellas. For mini-maxi pocket products 6-piece frames are also used.

Golf umbrellas

These are over sized umbrellas with rib lengths of 67 cm to 75 cm. They have a straight handle in order to fit cleanly among golf clubs in a golf bag.

Gore

This is the name for the individual fabric segments used in the canopy. Usually these are printed separately and carefully stitched together. A good example of this style would be our Rainbow design umbrellas

Long umbrellas

(also: regular) These are all umbrellas which are not telescoping or folding. The term is most often used for women’s umbrellas. The canopies of long umbrellas are slightly larger than those of the pocket-sized products. The majority of the umbrellas on this website are in this category.

Mini-Maxi umbrellas

Small pocket umbrellas whose shafts are telescoping in a number of stages, and whose ribs can be folded likewise in a number of stages. Check out our Mini-Maxi range of Folding umbrellas.

Notch

This is the middle of the umbrella canopy at which point the ribs are attached with the connecting wire, and as such is the nexus point of the umbrella. The notch itself is attached directly to the shaft. Today notches are almost exclusively made of plastic, while extremely high-quality handcrafted umbrellas have notches made of metal.

Ribs

The ribs are the parts of the umbrella which support the canopy. They are connected to the shaft through the runner and the notch. Materials used include steel, fiberglass, aluminium, and even bamboo. The stability of the umbrella is determined to a large extent by the strength, material, and form of the ribs.

Rivets

Rivets are used to hold together and keep mobile the individual parts of the rib. The rivet functions in this regard like a wheel axle. The rivets absorb a tremendous amount of pressure and must be very precisely made. This is achieved best with rivets which are solid, non-rusting, and made of brass. Simple umbrellas have hollow rivets whose rims are merely crimped.

Runner

Both automatic umbrellas as well as the manual-lift umbrellas are opened and closed by moving the runner along the shaft.

Shaft

(also: stick) The shaft is the piece on which the handle sits and to which the frame is attached. Shafts can be made of steel or fibreglass, aluminium, carbon fibre, cane, and of course wood.

Spring

Automatic umbrellas have an extremely strong spring which opens the umbrella by pressing the shaft and ribs out from each other. The unusual aspect of automatic springs is that the spring and its pressure point move together in the same direction. In duomatic umbrellas a combination of rubber drawstrings embedded in the shaft and spiral springs is employed.

Top pin

This pin is located on the upper part of the umbrella shaft and prevents the umbrella from being raised too high and turning inside-out.

Ventilation

In some golf umbrellas the ventilation principle is applied in order to better protect the large canopy against strong winds. In the face of strong wind gusts, part of the canopy rises and allows built-up pressure to be relieved via a series of vents. This type of umbrella is virtually impervious to being blown inside-out.

Windproof

(also: wind-resistant) “Windproof” and similar terms means that an umbrella can be restored to its normal position after being blown inside-out by a strong gust of wind. “Windproof” does not, however, mean that the particular umbrella will continuously withstand this process. Many of the umbrellas on this website are classified as “windproof”.

Interesting Umbrella Facts

Here are some interesting facts about umbrellas:

  • Word umbrellacomes from the Latin word “umbros” which means shade or shadow.
  • Modern day widespread acceptance of umbrellas started to spread across the Europe in middle of 18th century. Up until that point, umbrellas were viewed as a female fashion accessory.
  • The first man who publicly carried umbrella was Englishman Jonas Hanway. His influence finally introduced umbrella to male population of England, and soon after entire world.
  • Modern day umbrellas are strikingly similar in their design to the models that were used in ancient Greece and Rome.
  • Technological advancement of 20th century enabled the creation of mechanisms and materials that are integral part of modern umbrellas.
  • Currently there are many types of umbrellason the market – traditional, automatic, compact, bubble, storm and crutch umbrellas (they can serve as a walking stick or cane).
  • Umbrellas represent an important part of modern fashion.
  • Umbrellas found their way into many new areas of modern life, for example as a decoration of many exotic cocktails and drinks.
  • Modern day umbrellas are coated with Teflon, which makes their canopy waterproof.
  • Majority of modern umbrellas are madein China.
  • One city in China (Quanzhou) has over thousand umbrella factories.
  • Umbrellas can be used as offensive and defensive weapon. French President Nicolas Sarkozy was first who started using Kevlar coated umbrella as a part of his security measures.
  • Umbrella can be used offensively as a weapon, or its shaft can effectively hide a secret blade. Modern security agencies are known to modify umbrellas for their secret purposes. For example, Bulgarian dissident writer Georgi Markov was assassinated in 1978 by KGB agent who carried deadly poison in his modified umbrella.
  • Many religionsadopted umbrellas and parasols as a part of their ceremonies and processions.
  • One of the most famous hat that serve as some sort of big parasolis Mexican sombrero (which can be translated as “shade maker”).
  • During the 19th century, European fashion demanded that umbrellas must be held in the middle of their shaft, with handle pointing toward the ground. English nobility preferred umbrellas made from blue or green silk.
  • Steel ribbed umbrellas were invented in 1852 by Samuel Fox.
  • First working “folding umbrella” was introduced in 1969 by Bradford Philips.
  • Over 33 million umbrellas are sold in United States each year.
  • First use of simple made sun protecting umbrellas (parasols) comes from 3-4 thousand year old Egypt and Assyria. The exact time when parasols from natural materials (palm leaves) were made is not known, although scientist speculate they were used since the dawn of human civilization.
  • During its first thousand years of life, parasols were viewed as a symbol of wealth and power. Many civilizations practiced tradition of showcasing exotic and complex made parasols of their rulers.
  • First waterproofed umbrellas were created in ancient China, over 3 thousand years ago. Many Asian rulers showcased their might with multi-tiered parasols that sometimes had up to 20 levels of protection.
  • From around 1000 BC to 400 AD, small and foldable parasols (in their design almost identical to modern umbrellas) represented one of the fashion accessories of females in Greece and Rome.
  • During the European Middle Ages, people protected themselves against sun and rain with long waterproofed coats and hats. This tradition spread across the world during the Age of Discovery, but was soon.