What We Like
Large size provides tons of shade
Classic style and color
Portable and easily stored
What We Don't Like
Needs a special base that’s sold separately
Fabric not as fade-resistant as other brands
Wide pole doesn’t fit all tables
Big decks, long outdoor tables, poolside loungers—there are plenty of reasons why you might need a patio cover that can shade a large area. But cost and space constraints can make installing a pergola or awning impractical. That’s where the Le Papillon 15-Foot Double-Sided Market Outdoor Umbrella comes in. It’s like two big round market umbrellas merged into one, so you can cover a large area when you need to and still retract the umbrella to a compact format and tuck it away in storage. The Le Papillon brand specializes in outdoor umbrellas, and its 15-foot double-sided model is one of the most popular in that category. We gave it a whirl with our long rectangular outdoor table over the course of several sunny 75- to 80-degree days in Portland, Oregon. Read on to find out if it provided the no-fuss shade it promised.
Performance: Excellent shade coverage
It took only a few minutes to put the umbrella together. It’s so simple, there weren’t any instructions in the box. Just slip the poles together until they click into place. But it does weigh 36 pounds, and it’s top-heavy since it’s essentially like two large umbrellas in one. That’s why it’s called “double-sided.” As a result, it makes it tricky to hoist up high enough to put through the hole in a table. It definitely requires a good deal of arm strength or a second person to help.
The canopy stretches out to 15 feet, which was more than enough to shade our 84-inch-long table.
To unfurl the canopy, we simply turned the crank, which was no problem at all. However, there’s so much fabric that we had to bob and weave to keep it from hitting us in the face as we raised and lowered the canopy.
The canopy stretches out to 15 feet, which was more than enough to shade our 84-inch-long table. It’s made from polyester, though the company makes no mention of whether it’s solution-dyed (which means the color is very fade-resistant) or whether it’s been treated with any waterproofing or UV protection. Ours has held up fine in the rain for months of testing, though we haven’t had any major downpours. And some reviewers have mentioned that rain can leak through—but only during big downpours.
The pole stretches the umbrella up to an impressive 8.9 feet high. It’s made of powder-coated aluminum, which is rust-resistant, and the ribs holding up the canopy seem to be made of powder-coated steel, not more expensive fiberglass. Unfortunately, online listings for this umbrella lack these details so we’re not entirely sure, and there’s no website for the company that would provide this information.
Design: Large and in charge
While traditional round market umbrellas have a jaunty, classic look, this big boy has a serious presence. It looks as if two round umbrellas were fused onto the sides of a third. Our first reaction was “whoa!” but we soon got used to its hulking size. The design is familiar enough that it would blend in well with any patio décor, and the beige color both reflects light and allows it to match whatever color schemes are at play on the house and in the yard.
Our first reaction was ‘whoa!’ but we soon got used to its hulking size.
Underneath the umbrella, there’s an intricate criss-cross of black “ribs,” which are the arms holding up the canopy. Personally, we found all that hardware overhead a bit visually overwhelming, but after a while, we stopped noticing. It seems that’s the price that must be paid for a huge cover that can be easily be retracted and stored.
To keep heat ventilating through the top, and keep the wind from catching it and causing damage, the three peaks of the umbrella each have a vent. A hook-and-loop fastener tie keeps the umbrella closed and secure when not in use.
As big as it is, it should come as no surprise that the patio umbrella is heavy, too. In order to hold up all that mass, the pole is a bit wider than standard umbrellas—1.89 inches instead of 1.5 inches. It fit through the hole in our wood table fine but had only a few millimeters to spare.
Personally, we found all that hardware overhead a bit visually overwhelming, but after a while, we stopped noticing.
Required Additional Purchase: Base sold separately … and it’s not cheap
Many patio umbrellas are sold without a base, which must be purchased separately. That’s not a big deal for standard-sized patio umbrellas, but this big guy requires a base that’s at least 66 pounds and has a pole opening that’s 2 inches wide. It’s also important to make sure the base has a tightening knob to secure the pole and keep it from spinning around in the wind. This narrows down the options quite a bit to a few pricey contenders. So keep in mind you’ll likely have to spend over $50 and likely closer to $100 to get a base that will work.
Price: Not bad for the size
Considering how expensive pergolas and built-in awnings can be, the Le Papillon 15-foot Double-Sided Market Outdoor Umbrella is a downright bargain. Like those pricey options, it’s big enough to cover a large area—15 feet of space that can include a long table, couch, or lounge chairs—but at $160, it’s a fraction of the price.
Keep in mind you’ll likely have to spend over $50 and likely closer to $100 to get a base that will work
However, compared to other brands of double-sided patio umbrellas that seem nearly identical, it’s a bit more expensive. A similar option from Iwicker is about $130, and it comes with a base. However, keep in mind that the materials in the Le Papillon model may be significantly more durable.
Le Papillon 15-foot Double-Sided Market Outdoor Umbrella vs. Iwicker 15-Foot Double-Sided Outdoor Patio Umbrella
Both of these brands offer an almost identical umbrella. Both have extra wide poles (about 1.89 inches) that must be taken into consideration if planning to use this to shade a table. Both have an easy-to-use crank, three wind vents, and canopies made of polyester. However, the Iwicker version specifically says the fabric is “fade-resistant, water-resistant, and UV protected.” These details aren’t included with the Le Papillon brand, but it does have far more reviews, the majority of which are positive.
The Iwicker’s pole is also powder-coated steel rather than powder-coated aluminum. Steel is stronger and heavier, but more prone to rusting if the paint gets chipped. And the Iwicker comes with a base specifically made for it, which requires two bags of sand. You’ll need to shop around for your own base to hold the Le Papillon version, and it can cost more than $50.
Lots of shade at a reasonable price.
Although there are slightly cheaper double-sided umbrellas on the market, the Le Papillon 15-Foot Double-Sided Market Outdoor Umbrella is a solid bet. The umbrella offers 15 feet of deep shade, is easy to use, and takes up comparatively little space when stored. When you need a portable option to protect a large area from the beating sun, this big ’brella is a great solution.
- Product Name 15 foot Market Outdoor Table Umbrella
- Product Brand Le Papillon
- Price $139.99
- Weight 36.2 lbs.
- Product Dimensions 63 x 19.1 x 6.2 in.
- Color Beige, green
- Pole Diameter 1.89 in.