For many years, I have only carried a compact umbrella. I love the looks of the large, standard umbrellas, especially the ones with the curved handles. However, I opt to forgo those big umbrellas and use a compact umbrella.
There are several reasons I choose a compact umbrella, starting with the weight. I normally carry my camera, camera lenses, and my iPad when I am out and about. I don’t need the added weight or bulk of a large, unwieldy umbrella. One of these compact umbrellas fits easily into my bag.
All too often, I am already out when a shower, or even an unexpected thunderstorm, pops up. I need to be able to grab cover quickly, especially if I have my Nikon Camera around my neck. It is way too expensive to leave exposed to rainy weather.
Let’s start with the pretty umbrellas that make great gifts! Basic black, micro mini, and purely practical will follow.
Pretty Gift Umbrellas
If you are seeking a really pretty umbrella to give as a gift, or to carry yourself, these pretty compact umbrellas are lovely. For those who love the impressionist art of Monet or Van Gogh, you will love the floral designs featured below. Or, perhaps you would prefer carrying one big flower. They are all beautiful.
JSTEL Monet Painting Windproof UV Umbrellas Auto Open Close 3 Folding Golf Strong Durable Compact Travel Sun Umbrella, Portable Lightweight Easy CarryingPlemo Automatic Umbrellas, Windproof Purple Daisy Design Compact Folding Umbrellas Anti-Slip Rubberized Grip Travel GiftsGlodeals Van Gogh Masterpiece Oil Painting Automatic 3 Folding Parasol Sun Protection Anti-UV Umbrella for Women (Almond Blossom)
Ultra Light Micro Mini Compact Umbrellas
totes Compact Travel Foldable Water-Resistant Umbrella, BlackThis is my micro mini everyday umbrella. A basic black umbrella is right for any occasion. I never have to worry that I am carrying something too bright or inappropriate for my surroundings. If I could only have one, I would choose the classic black umbrella. However, I do enjoy having a colorful umbrella that is more my personal style when I am out for fun.
The Totes Micro Mini umbrellas have a strap on the handle. That strap is convenient for several reasons. I may need to use it as a wrist strap, but most often I use it to hook on my jeans belt loop with a spring clip. Since they weigh less than a pound, I hardly notice that bit of added weight. There is nothing fancy about this umbrella. It is simply folds up really small (6 inches) so it is easy to carry.
The real downside to this umbrella, even though I love it, is that it won’t last forever. It is not as durable as the compact umbrella we keep in our car, but it is small and lightweight, which is what I need when I am out taking pictures. Fortunately, they are relatively inexpensive.
A More Durable Choice with Auto Buttons
If you are more interested in durable than micro mini, but you still need basic black, then I would recommend a slightly larger mini umbrella. It also features a open & close button, which means you don’t need both hands to open it quickly. The downside to this option is that it is 12 inches long when folded down. That is fine if you are carrying a tote bag, briefcase or large purse, but it won’t be as easy to carry around. It would, however, be my choice for the car.