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Getting an english umbrella, can't decide between Brigg and James Smith - Page 2

post #16 of 21
I've left enough umbrellas at restaurants, hotels, clubs etc to deter me from buying an expensive umbrella. If only they come with a GPS chip to help me locate them...
post #17 of 21
If you're in the UK it's worth keeping Brigg's outlet telephone number and phoning up each week. Possible to get one before they put it up on the website. I was lucky enough to get one of their bespoke umbrellas with silk canopy for £80.
post #18 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by xael View Post
If you're in the UK it's worth keeping Brigg's outlet telephone number and phoning up each week. Possible to get one before they put it up on the website. I was lucky enough to get one of their bespoke umbrellas with silk canopy for £80.

Are you saying that they do clear excess stocks from time to time, and sell these umbrellas at below retail? Thanks
post #19 of 21
My own Brigg, silver band and maple handle. Having just missed the natural light, the picture fails to show the shimmery iridescent quality of the wood. I may still go for a JS Whangee handle model, or maybe a Fox one (they offer an invisible join between stick and handle on their more expensive models), but for now, the Brigg has satiated my umbrella appetite.
post #20 of 21
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So, the choice of an umbrella from Brigg or James Smith? Speaking personally there is only one choice, step forward James Smith as my preferred supplier. Indeed both companies offer an excellent product but the service and ambiance of James Smith (how could you not enjoy choosing in their wonderful victorian setting) along with the vast choice, wins every time. My first purchase a year ago was a solid hickory stick in black with silver collar. Unfortunately I did not take care of it and broke it, so badly that I was too embarrassed to return it for repair, a task James Smith offer for all of their own umbrellas. So, time to replace with a new one. This time I had a list of options I required (nothing is a problem to the knowledgeable team who look after clients) including a thinner shaft, even though I still wanted a solid stick. I also required the larger frame, my first umbrella being sightly too small for a six foot person. Problem solved. If you do not care for the normal 20mm shaft ask for the slimmer 16mm shaft, this allows the canopy to be furled tighter giving a slimmer appearance. James Smith advise that the slimmer shaft is not suitable to use as a walking stick, but heavens, I can change to a walking stick thickness when I'm to old to stand up. I have included a photo of the slimmer shaft to help. Next the larger canopy. Well wanting a slimmer shaft and larger canopy does limit the choice but they had in stock the perfect umbrella, it was in hickory wood (a very hard wood they explained and therefore long lasting and not porous when it comes to getting wet). Another photo shows a tag inside with ....26......which is the length of the longer rib in inches. Perfect, that little bit larger without being vulgar.

Finally, the ferrule. Most of you will be aware that you are handed an adjustable walking stick to decide on the overall length of your umbrella, which is then taken away for a few minutes (leaving you free to browse and decide if the hall stand could do with a silver topped cane), and returned cut to length with the ferrule added. The first umbrella would have been perfect if I was using it as a walking stick but esteticly looked short and stumpy. This time I asked if they could make the end longer, even though it didn't pass the adjustable stick test. They were more than happy to pander to my whims. The new umbrella has a measurement from cap to ferrule of 5 1/2 inches, much longer and with the slimmer shaft a little more elegant. The final photograph shows this.

One last thing. The solid silver band is a must for me, it just looks so right. So, how is it that the new umbrella has two silver bands? I took the band from the first umbrella and added it onto the new umbrella. You may like it or not, James Smith may like it, or not. It certainly makes the umbrella stand out in a cloakroom. I much prefer the understatement of solid silver as opposed to the standard gold plated collar from Brigg. The Brigg collar does have the HRH The Prince Of Wales warranty crest on, but I suggest it's time our future monarch changed his allegiance. Perhaps James Smith might add the extra band at a cost, or they may just hold their hands up in horror. Money is so vulgar but to save you all asking the hickory solid stick in black with slim shaft and larger canopy, not forgetting the single silver collar, retails at £290 as of July 2015.
Is it worth it? You cannot buy style, you have it or you do not (we do our best), but you can buy quality. Finally, do real men use umbrellas, yes when it's from James Smith, yes when your suit was made by your tailor and the heavens have opened and to finish......do you really look that good in a wet tee shirt?
post #21 of 21

Hello all I've been following many forums on umbrellas in London as I'm looking for something to take home that is hand made in London, a memento of sorts, I've narrowed it to a James smith due to the prices. I've seen the fox umbrellas are cheaper but getting to the store since the one in central London closed would be more hassle than its worth. I was curious if anyone could remember any in store prices from James smith, I've read different things but on their website the cheapest I've seen is 219gbp can anyone help me out? I would be looking for a solid stick all black canopy so pretty simple in that respect, additionally does anyone know of anything else that is hand made in London that might be of interest I guess the only word I can think to describe would be "gentlemanly" any help would be appreciated.

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