So this buddy of mine has a really cool 26" softbox (Wescott Apollo) that is unique in that it has an internal umbrella shaft and can be used with an ordinary lightstand and speedlight, without any additional hardware. So these softboxes are great, except they cost $140 USD so I set out to make something similar for $23 and it works like a champ! I also wanted something that looked at least sort-of professional, was collapsable and fully portable.
What you will need:
1 45" Westcott silvered on the inside, black on the outside umbrella (needs 8 internal ribs and MUST be a single fold design, ie. NOT a compact umbrella)
4" of 16ga wire
1yd translucent fabric
needle or sewing machine
These two photos show the starting umbrella and what the inside will look like with a strobe in place
Step 1: Remove the fabric from the frame
After you cut the outer threads attached to the tips of the metal supports, you will need to re-glue the tips back on to prevent them from poking through the outer fabric.
Step 2: Tape the free floating legs to the still attached ones
Now you should have an umbrella with four doubled legs