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File:Winter princess parasol 2809.jpg

Any time a lady carries a parasol as a sign of high class grace and femininity, and sometimes as a sign of demureness and innocence.

The parasol (a compound word of Spanish origin meaning "to stop/block the sun") has been used in cultures all over the world for at least 2,000 years, from Egypt to Greece to China, before making its way to Europe and the United States in the 18th century. This trope basically kicked in during the 19th century, when it was almost always proper for a well-to-do lady to carry one to keep from getting sunburns on her delicate skin, whereas poor woman had to grub in the fields. Now that having a suntan isn't seen as so gauche anymore, it's just symbolic of the lady having aforementioned traits.

Bonus points if she is also wearing a white, lacy dress, and even more points if she is on an Old-Fashioned Rowboat Date.

Of course this means the trope is prevalent in The Gay Nineties, and Southern Belles. And also of course, this can set off Real Women Never Wear Dresses.

Despite this, it can still overlap with Parasol Parachute, Parasol of Pain, Kicking Ass in All Her Finery.

Compare Together Umbrella, Opera Gloves, Princess Classic, Southern Belle, The Ingenue, Elegant Gothic Lolita.

Examples of Parasol of Prettiness include:


Anime and Manga

  • One of Usagi's disguise dresses in Sailor Moon came with one of these.
  • Tot's parasol in Weiss Kreuz is both of prettiness and of pain, being a lacy and frilly one with a hidden blade.
  • Momo the Lolita from Kamikaze Girls is always twirling a parasol that matches her elaborate outfits.
  • Miss Valentine of One Piece. Thanks to her weight-changing powers, it doubles as a Parasol Parachute. Perona has a parasol as well.
  • Evangeline of Mahou Sensei Negima sometimes uses this to complement her Elegant Gothic Lolita attire.
  • Quon from RahXephon carries a prettied up parasol on occasion.
  • For the first few pages of the Rosario+Vampire manga's obligatory Beach Chapter, Mizore holds a parasol. Justified, in that it's blocking the hot sun from causing any damage to her. Although, she has no qualms about dropping the parasol and donning a stripy bikini later on.
  • Maruga, the white dragon Empress from Dragon Crisis almost always walks around with a parasol, sometimes even at night.
  • Ranma ½: Played for laughs when an old, dying man starts to haunt Ranma's dreams, because "she" reminds him of his first love. In these recurring dreams, Ranma is dressed in girly clothes and sporting a parasol to further accent the femininity of the look. He has to use an equally feminine parasol later on, which only adds to his annoyance with the situation.

Film

  • In The Sound of Music, one of the Von Trapp daughters wanted a pink parasol, possibly for this reason.
  • Parasols aplenty in Hello, Dolly!.
  • Many posters for My Fair Lady have Eliza Doolittle using one while Henry Higgins watches on.
  • Mary Poppins' standard umbrella doesn't qualify, but her parasol in the chalk painting sequence sure does - complete with lacy white dress.
  • Maggie Dubois has one in The Great Race.
  • Mulan carries an oriental style parasol when she goes to meet the matchmaker.

Literature

  • In Little Women, Meg wants a white parasol with a black handle to take to a wealthy society friend's house, but Marmee gets her a green-and-yellow one by mistake.
  • In Welcome to The NHK and its adaptations, Misaki is introduced with one of these - though she is something of a subversion of the Purity Sue archetype.

Live Action Television

  • In an episode of Unhappily Ever After, Jennie wanted a picnic like that in a film she watched (didn't work out), and wore a white dress and a parasol.
  • In NCIS, Abbie wore a lacy dress (but a black one), and had a matching parasol that she twirled around.
  • Kaylee from Firefly carries a parasol when she is first introduced, to show that despite being a Wrench Wench, she still likes some pretty things (a trait we see more of in "Shindig").
  • Worn with a matching dress in the opening of That Girl.
  • Kari of Myth Busters works the occasional parasol.

Theater

  • In the musical Lestat, Claudia mentions how cute people think she is with a parasol in "I'll Never Have That Chance".
  • Parasols are featured prominently in the opening number for Ragtime. In fact, they're presented as one thing that separates the upper-class whites from "Negros" and "Immigrants".

Theme Parks

Video Games

Web Comics

  • A rare male example (or possibly male) is the Monster in the Darkness from Order of the Stick, who is ordered to stay in the shadows until the right time to reveal him. When going outside, he has to stay in the shadows of a parasol, which is pretty, to show his actual gentle nature.

Web Original

  • Clemence Ceillet de Rousseau of Survival of the Fittest infamy owned one such parasol. She quickly abandons it, though, considering "She had no time to bother with petty things".

Western Animation

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