We love umbrellas of all kinds. Fat, thin, stick, folding, UV or rain protecting, heavy or light. While we love picking the perfect umbrella from our shops or online, we realize that for some, the only solution is a vintage umbrella. Whether it’s because you love to upcycle or you can’t stand a style that doesn’t harken back to the 20s, for some, vintage is the only way.

We’ve all seen the umbrellas at local flea markets or in the windows of the antique shops on Commercial Ave. Usually the vintage piece is sitting in a dusty corner, stacked under other items like broken records and stacks of dry paperbacks. If you really want to pick a vintage umbrella, we recommend checking out a few important elements before making a purchase.

Inspect the Fabric
If the material of the canopy isn’t in good condition, then the umbrella simply isn’t worth buying, unless you intend to repurpose it in some way or have it just for decoration. Check for signs of mould or holes that will only continue to deteriorate and leave you with nothing on your investment.

Check the Frame
Any broken or cracked frames need to be addressed, otherwise, the darn thing just won’t work. Older models often used metal or wooden frames and when those are damaged they can snag the material and make things worse. Keep in mind that if the umbrella really means a lot to you, we can do frame replacements in our repair shop.

Determine a Price
If you’re on the hunt for a vintage umbrella, you’re wise to do your research. We’ve all heard stories of people finding treasures for a steal at the local garage sale, but there are an equal number of people looking to take advantage of customers. It’s wise to check out prices in advance so you know you aren’t being swindled. Keep in mind what you intend to use the umbrella for (show? A craft? In the rain?) and set your budget.

At the end of the day, some purchases just speak to us and want to be taken home, so if you find the perfect umbrella and have an ideal space or purpose for it, enjoy!