According to recent meteorological news, the weather for March is gonna be WAP (Wet And Pushy), with heavy rain making all things wet and winds pushing stuff all around. Time to whip out the old, trusty, foldable umbrella. But, why don’t we switch out your humble, functional device for a more trendy, covetable version so that you would be more willing to bring it out and do a show-out? (Yes, Singaporeans are notorious for not bothering with carrying one around, despite our weather.) Sort through these phalanx of stylish travel umbrellas to find a fave – so you can go less like “ella, ella, eh, eh” when you’re caught out without one, and more like “Rain. On. Me.” when you are seen stepping about town with a fancy brolly.
HYPB/FRGMT Umbrella, $84 (USD $62), Stationeries by Hypebeast x Fragment
This one’s obviously for the hypebeasts: A Hypebeast x Fragment Design collabo delivered in a city-slicker black. Measuring 48cm when extended, 95cm wide when opened and weighing at 79g, the design’s kept clean with just a touch of swag in the form of “STATIONERIES” printed boldly on the water-repellant ripstop fibre. This made-in-Japan product’s so hyped it’s excluded from any promotions, not eligible for free shipping, is limited to 1 piece per customer and not open for any returns or exchanges.
Available from HBX
Tiny Optical Stripe Umbrella, $29.64 (RRP $53.73), Lulu Guinness
From the witty and retro-chic designer Lulu Guinness comes this attention-seeker. Like all of her glam accessories, this off-beat one’s hard to miss, what with the swirly black and white patterned canopy and punchy-red handle and ferrule (that’s the tip at the top of the canopy, fyi). A brave choice for braving the rain.
Available from ASOS
Stag Head-Handle Umbrella, $505 (USD $376), Deakin & Francis
You’ve got the right to feel all puffed-up and lordly when you’re seen with this show-stopper. This silver-plated stag-head brolly’s crafted in the UK by heritage and luxury cufflinks brand Deakin & Francis (that’s founded all the way back in 1786). Measuring 45.5cm when closed, you can still stick this in a tote bag and have its handle pop out, just so you can appear low-key showy.
Available at MatchesFashion
Patchwork Umbrella, $26.90, Klosh
Retailer: “How many kinds of prints or patterns do you want for your umbrella?” You: “Yes.” Well, here’s your “yes” – a design that’s inspired by the patchwork process of piecing together different fabrics to symbolise family heritage (this affordable one’s all nylon, of course).
Available at Klosh stores, multiple locations, www.klosh.online
Auto-Compact Umbrella, $65, London Undercover x YMC
This tie-up product between English brands London Undercover and YMC epitomises the labels’ utilitarian aesthetics. The former’s Auto-Compact model is reworked with an M.C. Escher-ish cubic op-art all-over print, that upon closer inspection, is actually an interlocked-letter graphic design of the latter’s brand name. So clever.
Available at END.
Skull-Handle Umbrella, $584 (£312.09), Alexander McQueen
Want your parapluie (French for “umbrella”) to be functional and high-fashion? Here’s your (wet) season’s best hand-carry black shell accessory. It’s a little longer than most other portable ones – it measures 58cm length-wise – but, hey, it’s the silver-tone Alexander McQueen signature skull that matters, ya?
Available at Mr Porter
Windproof Family Size Printed Automatic Umbrella (Bird Navy), $69, Leighton
Don’t like those teeny-weeny compact ones that don’t do nothing for you in terms of coverage and looks? Here’s a larger-sized one printed with a scattering of avian silhouettes for you, then. Weighing 225g with a 123cm-in-diameter canopy, this is a solid rain-protector made from strengthened aluminum and fibre-reinforced plastic (FRP) fiberglass that’s large enough to shelter two or more, so there’s less squeezing and less wetness all around.
Available at Isetan departmental stores, multiple locations, www.isetan.com.sg
Whangee-Handle Telescopic Umbrella in British Woodland Camouflage , $95 (USD $70), London Undercover
Here’s another smart looker from the British gamp maker, this time in a camo pattern (that looks kind of similar to the old SAF army uniforms of circa 1983 to 2012, for those who remember). This is proof that London Undercover knows how to construct a proper brolly; measuring 45cm when closed, it’s built with a natural bamboo crook handle, 2-section foldable structure, a 10-rib 97cm-in-diameter canopy, and the brand’s signature orange release button.
Available at MatchesFashion
Zantan Mix Print Panel Umbrella, $210 (USD $155), Sacai
This colourful ’brella from the Japanese brand is one borne out of sustainability and hybridisation. Think of it as upmarket upcycling; the six triangular panels are repurposed textiles of patterns that the brand has used for its clothing collection, such as bandana prints, stripes and checks. Which means that this is more a sun umbrella than a rain one – best to only use for ultra light drizzles or when you are briefly outdoors if you choose to get and use this.
Available at Lane Crawford online, or enquire at Dover Street Market Singapore (18 Dempsey Road, 249677) and Sacai boutique (581 Orchard Road, Hilton Singapore, #02-22/23, 238883) for availability.
Logo-Print Telescopic Umbrella, $615 (USD $460), Balenciaga
Let’s say you really want the world to know the label of your umbrella – no one’s gonna mistake this one for anything else but Balenciaga’s. Repeated white brand name logos and white lines printed on black polyamide is the brand’s modern take on the whole played-out monogrammatic-aesthetic. Its matching sleeve and slim wooden handle keeps things designer and chic.
Available at MatchesFashion