Vintage Umbrellas are umbrellas popular with collectors due to their age, design or rarity.
History & Description
Also called a parasol, rainshade, brolly or bumbershoot, an umbrella is a hand-held portable device and, depending on the material, is typically waterproof.
Today, the term umbrella denotes a device which is used to protect the user from rain whereas a parasol is designed to ward of the rays of the sun. Furthermore, umbrellas are usually collapsible devices, which means they can be opened and closed depending on the weather.
The oldest reference to a collapsible umbrella dates back to China in the year 21 A.D. but fixed umbrellas or parasols were used in ancient Egypt, Greece, Persia and Rome.
Guide for collectors
Antique umbrellas are often sold through national auctioneers on both sides of the Atlantic and prices tend to range between $100 and $150.
The most valuable examples of antique umbrellas are those that consist of precious materials such as mother of pearl an ivory or were produced by noted brands like Louis Vuitton.
There are a number of websites that are a great source of information for umbrella collectors and enthusiasts. A few good examples include; Antique Cane World, Antique Canes and Walking Stick Shop.
Notable auction sales
On November 21st 2010 at Burchard Galleries in St. Petersburg, Florida, a vintage Louis Vuitton umbrella, realised a price of $200.
On February 12th 2011 at DuMouchelles in Detroit, Michigan, a gold and mother of pearl umbrella, circa 1880, realised a price of $125.
On December 15h 2010 at Skinner Auctioneers and Appraisers in Massachusetts, a selection of eight vintage umbrellas, some with hardstone, enamelled or gilt handles, realised a price of $200.
On February 24th 2007 at Philip Weiss Auctions in Oceanside, New York, a vintage paper umbrella from the 1939 World’s Fair in New York, realised a price of $100.
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