With furniture manufacturers from around the world seeking cutting-edge innovation from big-name designers, it could have been easy to overlook a relatively small U.S. manufacturer whose chief designer began his career as a day laborer in a Miami, Florida, boatyard. As the chief shade architect for TUUCI (The Ultimate Umbrella Company, Inc.), Dougan Clarke is leading a transformation of outdoor furnishings through inspired designs that seamlessly combine world-class aesthetics with marine-worthy performance.
Leading resorts and hospitality venues are increasingly selecting TUUCI parasols for the unique experience that the shade creates for their guests. This year, Clarke and his team at TUUCI debuted the company’s most exquisite shade design ever, the F-1 high-tension shade parasol, during the Milan Furniture Fair. With a stunning stainless-steel cable system, graceful curves, and expansive size, the F-1 dazzled crowds of Milan Furniture Fair attendees.
“We design shade structures that not only extend, but also transform outdoorliving spaces, resulting in fresh, new, open-air living experiences,” Clarke says. “Our mission at TUUCI is to create shade structures that extend the enjoyment of a day, an evening, and an entire outdoor-living season.”
Other notable introductions from TUUCI featured at the Milan Furniture Fair were the Plantation cantilever sun shade and the inspirational Stingray shade sculpture. Also on display was the Crescent parasol; this signature parasol for TUUCI features a translucent shade membrane that cascades to brilliantly polished, trillion-shaped finials that punctuate both the beginning and end of the shade experience.