Big brollies are all the rage, says Sam Wylie-Harris.
Here comes the sun! Spending time eating al fresco, reading and relaxing, or simply watching the world go by, is one life’s little pleasures.
But sometimes a sunhat and pair of shades aren’t always the best protection, especially when those rays get a little more fierce – and yet you still want to sit outside.
For a little garden therapy, parasols are proving a hot favourite this summer.
“Parasols might be something of an essential, but can be so much more than a practical addition to outside spaces,” says Brendon Haxby, founder of interiors specialists Naken.
“We’ve seen a real move in how homeowners are using their home’s exteriors. Gardens, regardless of size, are becoming an extension of the home, with more people using their outdoor spaces to socialise, entertain and cook.
“So, it’s no surprise that when it comes to exterior styling, people are getting more picky – even when it comes to their parasols.
“A battered brolly from summers past no longer cuts it,” says Haxby.
He says for summer 2022, we’re going to see a lot more parasols that are inline with interior styles. “Expect a more maximalist approach – parasols that are a little ‘extra’.
“Think, tassels, more considered curves and a range of finishes that will complement existing garden furnishings,” adds Naken.
And just in case you’re sizing up your precious piece of patio, designers are catering for bijou balconies, as well as a manicured lawn.
Dave Dryden, Christow’s home and garden guru says: “As well as standard two metre, 2.4 metre, and 2.7 metre diameter parasols, we also stock a ‘Half Parasol’. Basically, the canopy is half the size of a normal canopy – kind of like a parasol that’s been chopped in half!” he adds. “They’re a popular choice if you have a small patio or balcony area, because they take up half the space.
Here’s how to feel you’ve got it made in the shade…
1. Banana Parasol, 3m, Navy, £79.99, Christow
Super for larger areas, this banana parasol has an offset base with an overhanging canopy, so there’s no pole in the middle to tie you to a table. Ideal for sun loungers or a paddling pool.
2. 2.4m Boho Tile Carousel Parasol, £100, Dunelm
Pretty as a picture, this boho beauty makes you want to unfurl a blanket, scatter some cushions and pop the cork on a bottle of pink prosecco.
3. Norfolk Leisure 2.7m Round Geisha Parasols, £219 each, Hayes Garden World
A kaleidoscope of colour, we’d have one of these gorgeous Geisha parasols in every shade, given half the chance.
4. Garden Must-Haves Carousel Outdoor Parasol – Anthracite & Green, £166.50, Naken
With a crank and tilt option, this pretty parasol can follow your shadow as the sun rises and sets.
5. Olive & Lilac Carousel Stripe Parasol, £375, Rockett St George
With a vintage-inspired design, trendy tassels and its own matching fabric carrier bag with straps, this parasol feels as much at home in the garden, as it does the beach.