Fashion & Beauty

Made for the Shade

YOU CAN’T sit on the porch or linger in the gazebo forever, so how are you going to create the pool of shade that will protect your complexion? Wield a parasol! Fanciful or sober, paper or nylon, the choice is yours. But your skin will thank you.

It’s no news that antebellum images (and even Victorian ones) feature ladies and their frilly parasols. How affected the whole idea seems. But today’s Asian woman, particularly Korean) maintains her flawless face with intricate cleansing rituals and, yes, parasols.

Yes, it’s one more thing to cart around. But we learned to tote our smartphones around; we can probably conquer this challenge too. Here are some styles to get you thinking.

—Nancy McKeon

This Thai parasol hand-painted with elephants and chedi (temples) on oiled cotton. It’s $30 at Ladyshade.


Walmart calls this a small folding UV Sun and Rain travel umbrella, now with a violet or yellow flower. It’s $19.97 at Walmart.


Also from Ladyshade, a parasol again hand-painted in Thailand, a black cat  on a cream background on oiled cotton. It’s $30 at Ladyshade.


The subtle flower pattern appears when the Secret Blossom Sun Rain Umbrella gets rained on. It’s $13.99 on Amazon.


How cool is this? Black Sugar Skulls painted on a paper parasol. Not very Victorian, eh? It’s $24 through Amazon.


The Georgetown Business Improvement District in Washington DC began a ParasolShare program in 2016, the better to encourage shoppers on too-sunny days. / Photo courtesy Georgetown DC BID.


Parasols on display at the DC Greenworks florist shop. They’re festive-looking but probably better in the garden. / MyLittleBird photo.

This mother and daughter told me my parasol was better than their umbrellas because it was smaller in diameter and lighter in weight. / MyLittleBird photo.

The parasol can also serves as a handy doggie water bowl during a visit to the park. / MyLittleBird photo.


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3 thoughts on “Made for the Shade

  1. Pat Titn says:

    What a great piece Nancy. It appears we are becoming a little more like Asia

  2. Me again — OH MY GOD LADY SHADE IS THE BOMB. Thank you.

  3. WHERE are the DC greenworks parasols from? I have have a palm that actually needs more shade — and a hot pink one (or green or blue or red) would be gorgeous. Off to check out ladyshade!!!!

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