Huifeng Umbrella Co.,Ltd.

A leading umbrella manufacturer since 1987

Understanding the Difference between Patio Umbrellas and Market Umbrellas

the Difference between Patio Umbrellas and Market Umbrellas

Nowadays, umbrella manufacturers develop new and exciting umbrella designs, each with a unique function. Of these numerous umbrellas, we would look at the patio and market umbrellas.

These two umbrellas are often used interchangeably to mean the same thing. In reality, because they are different, this article would shed some light on the differences between patio and market umbrellas.

Abba Patio 9-Foot Umbrella

What is a Patio Umbrella?

A patio umbrella is described as an umbrella that has been manufactured specifically for outdoor leisure purposes. Or you could say that a patio umbrella is that umbrella that fits through a hole in a table.

Historically, patio umbrellas have been associated with royalty and nobility. They first existed between 1100 BC and 1200 BC in China and Egypt. In countries like Greece, it is said that they carried their gods under an outdoor umbrella. Could it have been a patio umbrella? Maybe!

A patio umbrella shelters its occupants who sit under it from the sun and other weather conditions. Do you have a beautiful backyard or garden you love to enjoy on summer days? Then installing a patio umbrella is the right choice. It is used in backyard patios (where it got its name from) and environments where eating and lounging occur, like restaurants, cafes, hotels, etc.

A good patio umbrella adds elegance and beauty to your backyards, patios, decks, and gardens. A quality patio umbrella provides coolness and fashionable charm for your outdoor activities. With patio umbrellas, you can enjoy nature without sacrificing style or comfort.

A patio umbrella is manufactured so that the table acts as its stabilization system. A weighted base could also keep the patio umbrella straight, but it is not necessarily essential compared to the market umbrella. The table brace is often enough to provide the patio umbrella with stability and balance.

The materials needed in manufacturing a patio umbrella include wood, fiberglass, or aluminum. For its canopy, patio umbrella manufacturers use polyester or Sunbrella fabric. A patio umbrella’s canopy could be octagonal, rectangular, and square.

Patio Umbrella

Types of Patio Umbrellas

1. Traditional Table Patio Umbrella

This is the most common type of patio umbrella. A traditional table patio umbrella is usually placed in a patio table’s hole. This umbrella could come with a base for extra stability; however, the patio table is its primary form of stabilization. This patio umbrella has its pole made from aluminum or wood.

2. Tilting Umbrella

Tilting umbrellas allow you to maneuver your umbrella’s canopy to the exact position you want to be shaded without lifting the whole umbrella. Tilting umbrellas have a pivoting feature, an additional joint that allows the pole to rotate. And because of its flexibility, you are shaded as much as you want from the scorching heat.

3. Cantilever or Offset Umbrella

This type of patio umbrella has a support base that is heavy enough to make it stand firm. The pole of a cantilever umbrella is not in the middle of the umbrella but on its side. Also, a long arm holds up the giant canopy of the umbrella. An offset umbrella is heavier than others, making it less portable. Cantilevers are advantageous because they can shade a larger area due to the absence of the center pole.

4. Sail Umbrella

This type of umbrella is different from the other kinds of patio umbrellas. Their tri-cornered design makes it easy for you to tie it to any area of your backyard, garden, or patio. The sail umbrella is more suitable for those who have children. This umbrella does not require a base or a pole, making it easier to carry and package.

Other patio umbrellas include the tiki-style umbrella, commercial patio umbrella, patio umbrellas with LED lights, and pagoda umbrellas.



What is a Market Umbrella?

A market umbrella is an umbrella made of wood used for commercial purposes. Market umbrellas originated from the streets of Italy and France. The creation of market umbrellas was born out of the need to protect merchants who sell their goods in the noonday heat. In those days (and even today), not everyone could afford a tent, an enclave, or get a shop with a roof, so they came up with the idea of creating the market umbrella.

Nowadays, market umbrellas are used by farmers, traders, food vendors, and many others to protect their booths, kiosks, etc. while they trade. These umbrellas can be found in farmer’s markets, food vendor stalls or tables, crafts or book fairs, market stalls, and other commercial spaces. Merchants and traders set up their market umbrellas to provide shade to their customers and keep their goods, especially perishables, away from the harsh weather conditions. The market umbrella also provides a sort of appealing environment, making the buying and selling process easier for the marketer and his/her customers.

A market umbrella has a wooden or metal straight pole in the middle, joined to a fabric shade or canopy, and an umbrella base attached at its bottom. The top of a market umbrella is usually octagonal. Although it is rare, it is possible to find market umbrellas coming in square and rectangular shapes. The most common type of market umbrella is the Wood Market Umbrella.

Most, if not all, market umbrellas have wind vents at the top, which help it during very windy days. Market umbrellas are built to withstand severe weather conditions, especially knowing how long they might be in use. Some commercial stands or carts come with an opening where the market umbrella could be slipped through, making it easy for the trader to transport it.


Differences Between Patio Umbrellas and Market Umbrellas

Patio umbrellas differ from market umbrellas in the following ways:

1. Stabilization System

This is how the stabilization system of the market umbrella works: The umbrella comes with a base. This base ensures that the umbrella stands firm, even in the harshest winds. But the traditional table patio umbrella does not rely on the weighted base for its stabilization; instead, the base acts as an extra measure of support.

2. Location of Use

While market umbrellas are found in markets, stalls, fairs, and commercial areas, patio umbrellas are used in backyards, patios, gardens, pools, and other relaxation areas. Although you may find a market umbrella in a patio, that is not the market umbrella’s intended use.

3. Size of the Umbrella

Market umbrellas tend to be bigger and heavier than the traditional patio umbrella. This could be because of the added weight of the base used by the market umbrella. And since a market umbrella is also used to protect traders’ goods, its canopy may have to be bigger than a patio umbrella.

4. Intended Uses of the Umbrellas

As we have mentioned several times, the market umbrella protects the merchants and their customers from the elements of the weather. On the other hand, a patio umbrella is used for relaxation purposes. So, while market umbrellas have commercial uses, patio umbrellas are usually used for leisure.

5. Variety of Styles

The patio umbrella comes in various styles and designs, such as pagodas, cantilevers, etc. But the market umbrella has just one design style: the wooden market umbrella. This style of market umbrella gets its name from its pole being made of wood. And although there are aluminum poles, the wooden one is more popular. The market umbrella with an aluminum pole is better for windier environments and lasts longer than wooden poles. The ones with wooden poles work well too but may change color over time and become weaker.

6. Tilting Option

When the patio umbrella newly entered the market, it did not have the tilting option. Essentially, it was just like the market umbrella. But, because of technology, umbrella manufacturers added tilting to the umbrella canopy. This tilting feature makes it possible for the umbrella users to adjust the umbrella’s shade to whichever area they want. This option is not available in the traditional market umbrella.

wooden patio umbrella with tassel


This article aims to distinctly differentiate between and better understand the patio and market umbrellas. Despite their many similarities (e.g., the materials needed in their manufacturing, their shape, and the function of providing shade), we have also seen some significant differences. Hopefully, with this guide, you will be more educated about what to look for when buying a patio or a market umbrella.

Many people ignorantly purchase market umbrellas instead of patio umbrellas or vice versa, but you can now avoid that mistake. At Huifeng Umbrellas, we manufacture the best patio or market umbrellas you can get in the market. To buy or manufacture your umbrellas from us, contact us at We have got you covered.