Choosing a Parasol

One of the main accessories for the garden during the summer is the garden parasol. A garden parasol has many functions from protecting you against the harmful UV rays of the sun to providing cool shade when the temperature starts to rise.

There are numerous different types and styles of garden parasols no so we have put together a quick guide to hopefully help you decide which is best for your garden

The main 3 styles that are most popular at the moment are

A simple wooden parasol has been around for many many years. This simply consists of a parasol with a wooden support pole and wooden struts for the parasol itself. These are ideally suited to be used with the traditional weighted base that can either be filled with sand or water or solid cast iron bases.

These parasols usually get used with rattan furniture that has a hole in the middle of the table to accommodate the wooden pole being lowered through into the weighted base.

The crank and tilt parasol is an adaptation of the wooden parasol and is usually made from aluminium. The parasols are used in the same way as the wooden parasol however they will have the added bonus of being able to tilt them in the direction of the sun so that it can control the shade it gives a lot better. These crank and tilt parasols also have a cranking option to help open and close the parasol itself.

Dining table in sunny garden

The Cantilever is the newest style of the parasol to be introduced a few years ago. This has been seen as a very stylish parasol that has overcome the nuisance that the other 2 styles caused. Having a hole in your table with an umbrella coming through is now a thing of the past. The cantilever parasol can now be placed behind the seating area and hangs above perfectly without having the pole of anything else in the way. A popular choice for most gardens now.

Matching your parasol to Furniture

The type of furniture you have will ultimately dictate the style of a parasol that is suitable. For a rattan dining table set, it would be ideal to look at using a wooden parasol or crank and tilt style parasol that would be able to go through the hole in your dining table to provide cover.

If you were looking for a parasol that would give shade on a sofa set, or maybe a sun lounger then we would suggest that a cantilever style parasol would be more suitable. This type of parasol is designed to hang over your required area and to have any poles or mechanisms in the way. A great choice for these styles of furniture.

Parasol Material

Most parasols themselves will be made from the same kind of material whereas the framework will give you options.  The 2 main materials are wood and aluminium. A wooden parasol offers a natural style and feels to match your furniture. An aluminium parasol will give strength and be lightweight but may not match a wooden garden set as much. Apart from this, there isn’t really much else to choose from.

How a parasol works

Umbrella use umbrella use with garden furniture on white background garden furniture

Besides how they look and the material that they are made from, a lot of people will also consider the way in which the parasols work to be a big deciding factor in their final choice. For some, the simplicity of simply pushing up a garden parasol and securing it with a peg will be sufficient. But for someone a bit more elderly this may not be an option, therefore the ability to put the parasol up and down by turning a cranking handle may be a lot more beneficial.

The cantilever parasol is again a very different style. There are several positions and parts to move into place before the parasol can be put up. The parasol is usually extended fully using a cranking handle to wind it out to its full size.

Parasol Colours

Parasols will come in numerous different colours for both the parasol and the framework. For natural wood furniture and rattan furniture, most people tend to match the parasol colour to the furniture, but you don’t have to! There is nothing stopping you from being bold and injecting a fresh colour into your garden with your parasol.

Parasol bases

When purchasing a wooden or a simple crank and tilt parasol it is essential that you also ensure you have a base for it. Without a base, your parasol will fall over and potentially cause damage or injury. There are numerous styles of bases available. Some are plastic that can be filled with water or sand to give a weighted steel base. Another option is a solid cast iron base. These can be more ornamental and pleasing to look at and still provide a stable base.

For the cantilever parasol, these will come with a base however they will need weights to be added to hold them down. Weights can be applied in the form of patio slabs or you can purchase specially designed weights that match the parasol framework perfectly.

Either way, ensure you have your base sorted as well as your parasol otherwise you will not be able to use it properly.

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We hope the information above has helped you in your quest to find a parasol for your garden area. If for any reason you need help then please feel free to contact us and we can help with your choices.