Apparently, I have an affinity for umbrellas. I carry one with me every day in the bag I bring to work. I have one I always keep in my car, another I always keep at the office, and 3 that sit by the front door at home. I prefer “pretty” umbrellas. The one I carry to work has Monet’s waterlillies pattern on it.
For some reason I like happy things on the umbrellas since it’s usually a dark and dreary day when you’re using them. The one I keep in the car is pink and black and clear plastic I bought at the Mall of America (cool souvenir, huh?) with poodles and Eiffel Towers on it. The three that sit by the front door is a giant John Deere golf size, a tiny black “purse size” and one we bought out of desperation while in Disney.
Why am I telling you about all these umbrellas? Well, 4 of them were broken. Not big things where they didn’t work but tiny little things that would just annoy you when you used them. Yesterday afternoon, I gathered them all up and decided I was either going to fix them or trash them. I probably have too many umbrellas anyway but I hated to get rid of any of them if they all still worked.
The first one was my pink and black and clear poodle umbrella. One of the tips had come off the metal arm when you opened it and it would just dangle limply in between the other arms that were doing all the work. It also had a small tear where the seam had seperated. I took a bottle of super glue and squirted some into the plastic tip and shoved the metal arm back in the hole. I took a small piece of clear contact tape and covered the rip in the seam too. In less them 1 minute, repaired! Woo-hoo! I was excited and on a roll.
Next up was the turquise one I kept at the office. It too had one little arm that dangled limply not supporting its weight. I looked and thought the arm had come apart from the connecting piece. This one was a gonner however, the second piece of the metal arm escaped, never to be seen again, so this umbrella was introduced to the trash can.
My confidence shaken a little bit, I investigated the third one. This was a simple fix, the end of the fabric was supposed to be attached to the metal arm with some thread making a loop through a hole in the arm. The thread had disappeared and the fabric wasn’t going to the end of the arm any longer. I took some clear plastic thread and sewed the loop back into the hole of the arm and TADA fixed! Woo-hoo, that’s 2 for me and 1 for the trash.
Cautiously, I looked at the 4th one. It also an arm that wasn’t doing anything. This one proved to be the most difficult as the two pieces of the metal arm were supposed to meet in the middle and form a joint. The tiny piece that connected the pieces was gone. I got some heavy duty jewelry wire and managed to get the pieces taught enough where I could line up the two holes to get the wire through them both and wound it around the joint. Success! It worked perfectly.
So, in all, I had 4 crappy umbrellas that I probably would have just thrown away a year ago and bought 4 new ones. Now, my penny pinching self has 3 perfectly fine, self-repaired umbrellas. Be honest – think I’m a dork? My sister did buy an umbrella today for $1, hhmmm…