How to choose a parasol?
12.08.2022 | Editorial office

How to choose a parasol?

The sunflower is a very practical and modern addition to the garden. It's always at hand when you need to create a shadow. Experience the pleasant feeling of relaxing in its shade. The advantage of the parasol is its flexibility. It can be folded, moved, positioned, rotated and folded at any time, or put away. When choosing your parasol, be sure not to forget:

  • consider the purpose and location of the parasol
  • choose the right size and shape
  • choose a suitable construction material and shade
  • ensure a stable base and fastening
  • remove the protective cover against adverse weather
  • add an elegant cover to the pedestal
  • expand functionality with LED lighting and other accessories

The purpose and location of the parasol

The advantage of parasols over gazebos, pergolas, or covered terraces is that you can use their shade only when you need it. They will create sufficient intimacy and a sense of privacy. The disadvantage is a lower resistance to adverse weather, especially to strong winds. Simple umbrellas with a support rod in the middle, called lamp umbrellas, are gradually replacing hanging umbrellas with a side leg. The modern design of the side umbrellas is an attractive addition to any garden furniture.

If you have enough space, choose a side parasol. If you use shading mainly around lunch and dine at a table with an opening for a stand, choose a simple lamp shade.

Size and shape

The size of the parasol has a decisive influence on the stiffness and durability of the structure. Choose the dimensions of the parasol to suit the purpose of shading. Measure the area you need to shade. Larger and sturdier umbrellas generally better withstand a slight breeze or calm summer rain. The shape of the parasol is mainly a matter of your aesthetic sense. Choose so that the shape harmonizes with the surroundings and shades the desired space.

In case of an approaching storm and against gusty winds, protect the parasol by folding it and storing it in a protective cover.

Today, we consider a width of 3-4 meters to be the optimal size for a parasol. They are quite easy to use and provide enough shade during the day.

Round parasols

Round parasols

Round shape with an umbrella-shaped shade.

Square parasols

Square parasols

Square shape for maximum shading of dining on a symmetrical veranda.

Rectangular parasols

Rectangular parasols

Rectangular shape for complete shading of an extended table or sofa on the terrace.

Semicircular umbrellas

Semicircular umbrellas

Semicircular shape for balcony shading.

Construction and material

The construction depends on the purpose and shape of the parasol, the way it is attached and especially the size. The larger one needs a stronger and more stable construction, a heavier base, and a more durable shade. The main construction material is hard beech wood and teak, aluminum or metal with anti-corrosion treatment. The functionality and quality of constructions made of these materials is comparable. Let your style and aesthetic sense decide which material you choose.

  • the wooden construction stands out for its natural beauty
  • wood requires care and maintenance because it is subject to weather effects
  • metal steel or aluminum construction is suitable for folding systems and for easy portability
  • metal parasols do not require special maintenance, just wash them

Parasol with central pole

Parasol with central pole

Lampshade with central pole

  • it is available in traditional, retro, and modern design
  • it is suitable for shading at lunch
  • allows instant shading as needed
  • it has a simple construction
  • has a less attractive appearance
  • is the classic and most used solution easily foldable and portable flexible joint allows you to tilt the shade to the side and thus increase the shadow more cost-effective suitable for placing in the middle of the table with a hole for the supporting rod
  • the central bar prevents the full use of the area under the shade

Hanging parasol with side bar

Hanging parasol with side bar

Hanging parasol with side bar

  • allows the shade to rotate around the stand by 360° and shade according to the movement of the sun during the day
  • provides fast and variable tilting and positioning of the shade
  • the double tilting function allows shading throughout the day even when placed in the south, east, or west
  • has an attractive appearance
  • supports an open, airy concept of garden architecture
  • flexible in folding and tilting the shade allows you to use the entire area under the shade
  • requires more space for placement and handling heavier, more demanding to operate, or requires a heavier load for carrying higher purchase price

Wall-mounted parasols

Wall-mounted parasols

Opening the shade

The larger and more massive the shade, the more difficult it is to open.

  • smaller parasols with a central pole can be opened like an umbrella
  • larger and stronger ones are equipped with a handle with a position lock
  • large and heavy parasols use rope systems with pulley and counterweight

The opening method affects the total price of the parasol.

Shade material

The cover is an essential functional part of the parasol. Be interested in the design, color and style, but especially choose the material. The material based on polyester and impregnated canvas is most often used. He decides

  • resistance of the material to water and adverse weather
  • colorfastness
  • lifespan
  • resistance and protection against UV radiation
  • strength and elasticity of the material referred to as grammage. The heavier the weight, the thicker and therefore more durable the material

A modern alternative is a waterproof material. Even though it is perforated, it lets only 5% of UV radiation through. In its shadow, you feel as if you are sitting under the crown of a tree or under the leaves of a vine.

The choice of shade material corresponds to the price of the parasol.

Base and mounting

Base and mounting

The main function of the base is to fix the parasol and prevent it from tipping over. According to the size and structure of the parasol and according to its location, choose an anchoring stand

  • metal in the shape of a tip or thread for small portable umbrellas. It is charged into the ground or screwed into the lawn. It requires tools.
  • plastic filled with sand or water. Designed for paved areas of the terrace or veranda. Empty is easily portable.
  • granite, concrete or metal stand for bigger umbrellas and greater safety. They are heavier and difficult to carry.
  • the cross base is mainly intended for side umbrellas. It is loaded with concrete and granite blocks and tiles. It requires more space.

The stand is not usually included in the parasol. Stands and loads can be changed and supplemented as needed. The heavier and sturdier the stand and weight, the safer and more stable the parasol. This also affects the total price of the entire assembly.

Protective packaging

Protective packaging

The protective cover protects the parasol from the adverse effects of the weather when it is folded down and when it is not in use. It is usually made of durable synthetic material.

  • prolongs the service life, prolongs color stability, protects against UV radiation and pollution
  • requires additional handling of the parasol after assembly

LED lighting and accessories

LED lighting and accessories
  • LED lights can be part of the sunshade already from the manufacturer, or they are also available as a separate accessory. They enable safe night lighting. They are usually battery-powered or rechargeable, with recharging using a USB charger. They have remote control and multiple light modes. The lights have a hook, a clip for the parasol structure or another way of attachment.
  • parasol mosquito nets protect you from mosquitoes and insects
  • balcony clamps are an excellent solution to save space on the terrace and enable reliable attachment of lampshades to the railing.
  • stylish covers for racks and cross pedestals are made of elegant looking materials or wood. They increase attractiveness and prevent injury. They are not only decorative, but can serve as a side table under a parasol or as an original flower pot.

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