Oriental parasols are popular accessories used frequently as decorations in the home or as additions to elaborate costumes. They are available in a variety of shapes, colors, sizes, and materials, though the most common size is a relatively standard 28 or 35 inches diameter.
Parasols have been utilized by Asian natives for hundreds of years as personal shelter from the sun and rain alike. One reason that oriental parasols have always been so popular is the impeccable craftsmanship that goes into their construction.
Everything on them is hand-crafted to precision standards by professionals who have learned the trade from previous generations. With each passing generation, the process becomes even more perfected.
These parasols typically have a wooden handle and spokes. Usually, bamboo is used but other Oriental woods can be used as well. The spokes are covered with a screen that is made of paper, cloth, or even vinyl, depending on the intended use. This screen is almost always painted with traditional Oriental art work such as native flowers, animals, landscapes, or even historical moments captured forever in ink.
The artwork is almost always placed on the parasol in a symmetrical fashion as well, keeping with the traditional Oriental belief in positive space verses negative space.