Some styles of patio umbrella canopies include triangle and leaf shapes, an offset umbrella, a rectangular canopy, a thatched umbrella and a tiered pagoda canopy. There is also the sail sun shade design in which a flat, rectangular piece of material lays horizontally over an area with the ends tied back by ropes.
Both the triangle and leaf umbrellas are small, flat designs fastened to swivel bases that are intended for individuals, not entire tables. Similarly, the rectangular canopy is also sized for a single person. Like the sail sun shade, it is one flat, rectangular piece of material. A pole holds the umbrella up at one end and it slopes down toward the end.
The offset umbrella resembles the classic round design, but it isn't attached to the table and can maneuver to the side or overhead depending on the need. The thatched umbrella design also resembles the classic shape, but it boasts real palm fronds, giving it an island feel.
Manufacturers typically offer a range of materials for umbrella canopies. Olefin, a lightweight fabric, makes for an inexpensive canopy, while coolaroo blocks the majority of ultraviolet rays and keeps the area below the umbrella cooler. Sunbrella and sundura offer even more ultraviolet protection than coolaroo and are water-resistant or water-repellent.