Indoor umbrella stands, parlour games
During the Victorian era, people would commonly gather together and play parlour games, so called because they were often played indoors in the parlour. One such game was called "Elephant's foot umbrella stand," and went something like this:
Imagine, for example, a group of friends gather about the parlour hearth on a rainy London day in the latter 1800s, indoor umbrella stands, a classy brass umbrella stand on either side of the foyer are full of wet umbrellas, and perhaps someone plays a concerto on the harpsichord.
One gentleman begins, "I went to the market and I purchased an elephant's foot umbrella holders."
A young woman follows with "I went to the market and I purchased an elephant's foot umbrella stand and hundreds of copper canisters."
The gentleman then decides whether she's succeeded in guessing the logic, and accepts or denies her item.
Then the game continues, successive players trying to both remember the list of purchases and add something to it that follows the first gentleman's logic.
Iron umbrella stand holds history
The umbrella one might find tipped carelessly into an iron umbrella stand or the like, and alternately called a parasol, brolly, or bumbershoot, dates back at least to the time when Persepolis was the vibrant capital of the Persian Empire, or about five hundred years B.C.E. The Victorian era brought umbrellas that had passed through many modifications and had recently taken steel ribbing, as opposed to the wood or baleen frames that had been used. Today, modern versions don't require the elegant indoor umbrella stands of previous times that might have been set sweetly in the corner of the hall or entrance. Still, it's pleasant to keep older umbrella versions to recall slower times and the gifts that come to us from the past.
Copper canisters, compact bumbershoots
Today, umbrellas have been improved and refined so that now, one can be telescoped and folded into a small enough package to fit in a glove compartment or even a large purse. Made with materials like nylon or poly-pongee fabric, and framed with titanium enhanced alloy, plastic and fiberglass, perhaps even accented with light reflective material that improves its safety, today's bumbershoot is nothing short of a technological marvel. These don't require an iron umbrella stand, and in fact, they're compact enough to drop into one of the pretty copper canisters available at Excellent Accents, Inc.