Patio Umbrellas - Uses, Materials & Styles
Types and styles
Umbrellas can add that much-needed finishing touch to your patio furniture, and can complete the overall look of your exterior furnishings. There are a few things that need to be considered when buying a out umbrella for your property, including size and materials.
USES - Firstly, think about where you will be using your patio furniture umbrella – will it be through a table, or will it be free-standing? While most umbrellas are able to be used in either setting, you will need to check first before buying so that you don’t end up with the wrong type.
Patio Furniture Umbrellas - MATERIALS
Frame - Aluminum and wood are the two types of materials used to make the frames of patio umbrellas. While wooden frames are often more aesthetically pleasing, aluminum ones tend to be more functional. Most wooden umbrellas have a manual or pulley lift and do not tilt or rotate. Aluminum umbrellas usually have a crank lift and a push button tilt, which will allow them to tilt in different directions. Aluminum umbrellas are also available with luxury features such as remote control opening and automatic tilt.
Fabric - As your umbrella will be in the direct sunlight, it is important to choose a fabric that is strong and durable. A fabric that is UV resistant is ideal as it will help to keep you protected from the sun’s harmful rays. Darker colors are more likely to protect you and your patio furniture from the sun. Also make sure the fabric is one that will withstand the harsh elements so it has a long lifespan.
SIZE - Getting the right size umbrella is important. Too small, and the purpose of having an umbrella is completely defeated. Too big, and it will look ridiculous. Experts say the general rule is the umbrella should at least five feet larger than the area to be shaded.
BASE - A base is important for keeping your umbrella stable and anchored. A good base will prevent the umbrella from toppling over (and taking your table and meal with it) while you are trying to use your outdoor furniture. Two different types of base are available for your umbrella– one to use with patio tables, and the other for freestanding umbrellas.
Offset - Offset umbrellas are great for people who want full control of their shade. They are free-standing, and rotate 360deg so that it can easily be maneuvered to follow the sun around and provide you with shade all day.
Wooden/Market - Constructed of wood, market umbrellas are a stylish and sleek option for your outdoor setting. While constructed from a basic yet functional design, market umbrellas are a very popular and suit a range of homes.
Aluminum - Aluminum umbrellas offer pure practicality to your outdoor living. They are designed with functionality in mind, with features such as crank lifts and multi-directional tilts.