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How to Make an Umbrella


Creating your own rain umbrella is easy if you use the right materials and follow the correct steps. To create a rain umbrella, you'll need the old mechanism from an existing umbrella, the proper fabric for the canopy, and a sewing machine. This is a great alternative to buying a new umbrella if your canopy is damaged, and is a creative way to re-style an existing umbrella.

Open your umbrella and flip it over. To create a new umbrella, you’ll need to separate the umbrella mechanism from the canopy. Open the umbrella and place the top of the canopy on the floor so that you can easily access the fabric inside of the umbrella.
Unscrew the top of the umbrella. Pop off or unscrew the top of the umbrella to remove the canopy. If you're having issues removing the top, use a pair of pliers to free it from the umbrella.

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Mark the position of the loops on the old canopy. Use a marker to mark the locations where the fabric attaches to the canopy. You’ll need this information when you attach the new canopy to the umbrella mechanism. Cut the fabric loops attaching the canopy to the umbrella. Use a pair of scissors to cut the fabric loops connecting the canopy to the ribs. Once you're done removing the connecting fabric, separate the canopy from the ribs. You won't be able to use your old canopy after you cut the loops.

Taking Apart Your Old Umbrella

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Measure the old canopy so you know how much fabric to buy. Use a tape measure and get the approximate length and width of your old canopy. Add 2–3 inches (5.1–7.6 cm) to your measurements for potential mistakes and seam allowance. Write down the measurements on a piece of paper and save it for later. Set the old canopy aside for later.

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Purchase new fabric for your new umbrella canopy. You can purchase the proper fabric online or at a fabric store. Fabric like 2.2-ounce nylon taffetas and 2.5-ounce Supplex with UV protection will protect you from rain and the sun’s rays. Some fabrics will just absorb rainwater, making them a poor material choice for an umbrella.

Purchase new fabric for your new umbrella canopy. You can purchase the proper fabric online or at a fabric store. Fabric like 2.2-ounce nylon taffetas and 2.5-ounce Supplex with UV protection will protect you from rain and the sun’s rays. Some fabrics will just absorb rainwater, making them a poor material choice for an umbrella.

Cut a triangle out from your old canopy. Your old canopy should consist of a series of triangles. Cut out one of the triangles along the canopy’s seam so you can use it as a template.

Trace new triangles on your new fabric. Lay the triangle you cut out over your new fabric and use chalk to trace an outline for your new canopy triangles. Then, use a ruler or tape measure to draw parallel lines that are 3⁄8 inch (0.95 cm) from the lines that you originally drew to make up for the seam allowance.

 Cut the triangles the from the new fabric. Use fabric scissors, shears, or a rotary cutter to cut through the fabric along the lines that you traced. Cut out all of the triangles, making sure to keep the edges as straight as possible.  Sew the triangles with a 3⁄8 inch (0.95 cm) seam allowance. Use a sewing machine to straight stitch all of the triangle pieces together using a small stitch length. Sew the triangles together in pairs at first, then sew the triangles together in groups of 4. The final step is to sew the groups of 4 together to form your canopy.
Use a polyester or weather-resistant thread so that umbrella doesn't fall apart when you use it.
The 3⁄8 inch (0.95 cm) of fabric that overlaps should be on the underside of the umbrella. Set the new canopy on the floor. Place the top of the canopy flat on the floor so that the bottom of the umbrella is facing up.

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Place the umbrella mechanism on top of the new canopy. Open the umbrella mechanism and set the top of the umbrella on top of the new canopy. Spread out the ribs so that they extend out. Sew the ribs to the canopy with thread. Lay the old canopy next to the new canopy and correspond the marks you made before with your new fabric. Sew thread into the canopy and loop it around the rib several times. Continue to attach each rib to the new canopy until all of them have been securely attached.  Flip the umbrella over and reattach the top. Flip the umbrella over and straighten out the ribs. Screw or pop on the top of the umbrella to finish your project. To make sure that the new canopy is securely attached, open and close the umbrella several times.

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