Stormy Weather Cannot Defeat Re-Engineered Umbrella

Review: Blunt Umbrella

On a recent stormy San Francisco day, pedestrians all around me struggled as the wind made their bodega-bought umbrellas leap like impatient leashed puppies, or worse yet, flip inside-out like starfish stomachs. But not me. My umbrella kept its rounded shape in the nastiest of rainy gusts, its architectural integrity as unbroken as the dome of St. Peter’s.

I was using a Blunt umbrella, a water-repelling shelter whose design innovations include beefier-than-usual struts arranged in a more redundant, robust structure than most umbrellas. A “radial tensioning system” helps move the ribs firmly out against the fabric without requiring you to exert a huge amount of upward force, and there’s no little metal locking clip to fiddle with or catch on your gloves: just a solid plastic collar that you push up until the umbrella snaps into shape. And finally, the ribs’ tips are rounded, which keeps them from poking through the fabric.

On the downside, the Blunt is a bit heavier than most umbrellas, doesn’t fold up quite as compactly as some and for some bizarre reason, lacks a wrist strap.

The Blunt is a solid, reliable wet-weather sanctuary. Its unique construction may not be readily apparent, but you will definitely notice the difference in a storm.

WIRED Tough, double-strut system gives shape and strength. No pointy metal parts to poke you.

TIRED Not terribly large (a $75 extra-large model is available though). Petal shape may leave your shoulder occasionally exposed. Not compact.

Blunt Umbrella | Product Reviews.