This very elegant frame masterfully mixes a retro spirit with haute technology. Stainless steel is superbly crafted in Obsession by Lafont Paris, and softened with gentle tri-colour aqua tones. A special handmade gradient coating adds to the beauty, style and sophistication of the design. Click on www.lafont.com for more information on their new collection. JG
Wonderfully shiny acetate looks as if it just fell from an apple tree! Theo in Belgium loves to play with the colour palate, and this season the colours are linked to nature’s amazingly exuberant offerings. Samurai – part of the collaboration with Japanese designers Factory 900, is colourfully interpreted in springy apple gree in Japanese acetate. The design has a vintage air; a graceful curved top, and fun cut-out details on the sides. See more theo inspiration at www.theo.beJG
The sea and its many intonations are a continual inspiration for eyewear creators. Fashion designer Vera Wang interprets her version in a glamorous collection of beautiful sunglasses in truly luxurious colours, including this significant shape, with soft voluminous angles. Muted turquoise acetate transcending into sand, is highlighted with an inner metal rim, metal sides, and is further distinguished with a copper nose accent. www.kenmarkoptical.comJG
This latest frame from Coppe+Sid evokes a cosmopolitan air with a beautiful shape, and unites soft, spring green with classic tortoiseshell. Handmade in Italy, the acetate design has lovely curves and flow. Coppe+Sid’s signature statement – lapis lazuli – is nestled into the end tip. For more elegant frames from the new collection – visit www.coppeandsid.com JG
is our pursuit at Eyestylist, and this month we feature eyewear and accessories crafted with skill and originality. We’ll also preview glamorous frames that will debut in Milan. In REVIEWS discover alluring optical frames, and check out BOUTIQUES for a stunning seaside Polish eyewear destination. We love accessories of all sorts and in Designer of the Month, meet a bespoke shoe creator. Visit CITY GUIDES for information on exhibitions, books and cultural events. Click and stay with Eyestylist for international eyewear and accessory highlights!
This site is legally privileged, controlled and operated by Eyestylist.com. Material on this website may not be communicated in any way whatsoever, without the prior written authorisation of Eyestylist.com
26th February 2014From the first moment I met members of the Rolf team in Paris nearly five years ago, I was intrigued with these unconventional designers. This was their first show, and their “raison d’être” was to present a wooden frame. But….not just any wooden frame. this was a design with superb, beautifully sculpted craftsmanship, extremely professional, and it fit like a dream. The Rolf team (founders Roland Wolf, his partner Marija Lljazovic, her brother Martin, and Christian Wolf) had spent three years perfecting their perception of an elegant wooden frame, in the basement home of Roland and Christian’s father. Others were captivated too – Rolf Spectacles immediately won a Silmo d’Or, and people were intrigued with the beauty and construction of the design.
Discovering more of their unusual approach to eyewear over the years became evermore fascinating. With great anticipation I looked forward to visiting their headquarters in The Tyrol in Austria. Rolf had successfully emerged from the basement gathering international clients and more awards, to become an important player on the global eyewear scene. Nestled in the mountains, the outside of the sprawling Rolf structure looks like many commercial sites; however, enter the building, and a new universe unfolds – the Rolf World of amazing eyewear. The office dogs Jeremy and Lola add to the overall cosiness and casualness of the premises. However, behind this carefree ambience, is a team of extremely dedicated and hardworking people, committed to making superior handcrafted frames. There is a delightful camaraderie among the staff, and a purposeful atmosphere in the air.
Meticulous attention to detail is evident in the creation of each frame. The gluing room is acclimatized; sanding is done to perfection; and the quality control is evident with each frame microchipped so it can be monitored if necessary. Employees are trained over a period of several months to develop the skills and concentration that are required in producing the frames. The Rolf team makes most of the tools themselves used in creating the frames, while even humble instruments like tweezers also play an important role in the final product.
Mary Lljazovic is a construction engineer, which has served her well in developing the frames. “When we started making the frames, we thought we would stay in the cellar,” says Mary, “as we didn’t know what the reaction of the market would be. When the business began to grow, we had temporary offices: but it’s necessary to have enough space to build a structure, and work on research and development. We did it all, so we know what is involved. It used to be organised chaos, but now we are more structured.”
Nature and conservation are vital ingredients in everything Rolf pursues. Nothing goes to waste in the Rolf environment; a purpose is found for everything. “We like to influence people in a positive way,” says Bernie Wolf, who joined the family business as sales director, “and travelling so much I see the pollution in places like China. We are lucky to live in a country like Austria where people look after things.” Collecting and restoring old cars is a Rolf hobby. “We love classic cars,” Mary explains, “and every frame is inspired by a vintage car, including the technical features and design. There can be a lot of stress, but it would be boring if everything worked well all the time!” she says with a laugh.
“To break the stress, I take time with the horses and the dogs; think about the frames, and then it comes naturally. The frames are our passion, our love. We want to present wood in a new way; and it took almost three years to get the frames the way we wanted. The Rolf customer is between 18 and 85 years of age. We have a broad spectrum, so it is proof that the collection is well designed.”
To the original wood designs, Rolf has added incredible frames in stone. The Rolf legend continues to grow and expand. Roland Wolf says: “I’m a crazy guy; I like to try new things and it’s fun to experiment. You know, I can do the glasses, but I still don’t know how to work a cell phone!” www.rolf-spectacles.comJG
Felder Felder Creates Bespoke Frames for Catwalk Show
24th February 2014The fashion designers Daniela and Annette Felder bring eyewear chic to their Autumn/Winter 2014 catwalk presentation with one-of-a-kind frames made by Silhouette. The Austrian eyewear company teamed with the London designers – who are twins – to feature modern, bold frames that exemplify the contemporary styling of Felder Felder. The frames in a delicious chocolate tone complemented the chic lines of a shiny suit, acented with brown insets on the sleeves (above). The Felder twin’s signature style is a favourite with women who like fashion with tradition, plus a racy twist, and clients include Gwyneth Paltrow and Rihanna.
Long and short lengths are in the collection – flowing coats and short, swingy dresses – the above worn with the Silhouette frame in a luscious Bordeaux tone.
The Silhouette frame unites the spirit of retro and modern concepts – lightweight, lots of expression, and elegantly crafted – like the stunning fashion collections from Felder Felder. www.silhouette.comwww.felderfelder.comJG
21st February 2014The American-born, Paris-based fashion designer, writer and film maker Diane Pernet is recognised at fashion events in her signature attire and dark shades. When Ti Kwa was in Paris, she visited the Rigards showroom, and it was the start of an intriguing project to create a special frame for the fashion luminary. “Diane’s signature has always been an oversized cat’s eye frame, and right from the beginning, it was a challenge to handcraft such an unusual shape and size,” says creative director Ti Kwa, “And we sketched more than ten different designs. She narrowed it down to two, before deciding on the final one. Through the designing process, we were inspired by Diane’s incredible endurance and her continuous journey in the world of fashion. Hence we decided to go with a fluid front like the mobius loop to signify movement – a never ending, constant pace.”
Last month Ti Kwa presented Diane with the final version of her customized frame. At the same time, Rigards unveiled their new design RG0057 (top photo), worn by Jean-Marc Virard, Rigards marketing director, and Diane is wearing her one-of-a-kind customized Rigards. “We look forward to more collaborations such as this, as it brings diversity and quite of bit of fun as well,” says Ti Kwa. For more information on innovative frames by Rigards, visit www.rigards.comJG
19th February 2014A mountain climbing expedition by Italian designers Eric Balzan and Mirko Forti led to the discovery of glacier military goggles from WWII, that they found on a summit within the Dolomite mountains. A creative concept was born, and the duo founded Hapter in January 2013 with an expressive collection of eyewear, crafted from beautiful Cerruti 1881 fabrics. Now Balzan and Forti have created a replica of the heirloom goggles – MG Military Goggle.
The design unites a meticulous technological system with artisanal handcrafted materials. The result is a stunning piece with a special fusion of industrial-grade surgical steel, and an 18 micron superfine Merino wool in military green. The material is inspired by a Cerruti Woolen Mills fabric, masterfully woven from the finest wools in Queensland Australia. Hapter respects history, and the design is a tribute to an echo of the past, coupled with 21st century innovation. www.hapter.itJG
16th February 2014Purple is one of my personal favourites in eyewear. It is – perhaps unexpectedly – easy-to-wear, and it gives a lift to a minimal classic shape. Vanni’s choice of purple for Hydra V8444, a combination metal/acetate design with modified butterfly shape, is a good reflection of the colour’s all-round allure; worn by Doris Zaccone, presenter of “Capital in the world” (Radio Capital), Rome, where the Vanni Occhiali team was recently shooting, the colour is superbly eye-catching, but not overstated or in any way flash.
The Hydra also benefits from large proportions, and from what we are seeing, this is a key trend in women’s eyewear through 2014. See more Vanni styles at www.vanniocchiali.comCN
14th February 2014 Colour is keynote this spring and summer for clothing, accessories and eyewear. The palette is experimental and fun – be ready for the unexpected! French designer Pierre Cariven presents two designs in a delightful melange of colourations. Yael (above) blends black, red and camel with interior marbling interest on the insides, in a dramatic scalloped shape.
Eve is a sensual cat eye design in elegant teal blue, contrasted with cocoa tones. All Pierre Eyewear designs are handmade in France, to Pierre’s exacting standards. Each frame is finely crafted in high quality and beautiful acetate. For more details visit www.pierre-eyewear.comJG
RVS by V. designer, Vidal Erkohen has a way with statement colour and surprising colour combos. Model Ze is an RVS by V. classic, first launched in 2007, and now re-released in this playful combination of dark tortoise with trendy citrus lime. Ze is only available in this particular colour combination in a batch of 40 pieces, and to keep it even more special, the colour combo will not be repeated again! Rare shades from a specialist based in Turkey. www.rvsbyv.comCN
13th February 2014The Parisian label re-enforces the city’s reputation not only as The City of Light – but The City of Love – with their limited edition Bocca frames. Last year, they created the Bocca heart (below), and this year, they have two exciting designs on the Bocca theme. Above, Bocca Rock in Black and Bocca Smoking in purple. To further note the Love Day, Face à Face is asking FO(LOVERS) to send their thoughts about the capsule collection Bocca. Participants can send photos, video, text – all is possible – via e-mail, Instagram and Facebook.
Members of the Face à Face team will then choose their favourite testimony, and the winner will receive a Face à Face frame of his/her dreams! So join in the Valentine’s festivities – send in your testimony today – et bonne chance! www.faceaface-paris.comJG
12th February 2014The Rolf team’s passions are diverse – among them automobiles and eyewear. However, the two items are intricately linked in The Rolf World. Cars are an inspiration for their innovative designs in pure horn, wood, and stone that are all handcrafted in their Tyrol premises. So it was natural that when a disused petrol station became available near the Rolf offices, it was the perfect setting for a Rolf Boutique.
While on a visit to the shop, Rolf sales director Bernhard Wolf explained how the possibility of opening the store presented itself in an unusual manner. “This space was originally a petrol station. When the gas station closed, the bank actually offered us the shop, and we said yes. We have many clients who travel from Germany to buy frames in the boutique – customers want to by from the people who make the glasses. It is usually a member of the Rolf team who can be found working in the shop,” said Wolf.
As a former petrol station, there is ample parking space. The interior is inviting and cosy, and here you’ll find the full collection of Rolf Spectacles. Customers can leisurely try on the amazing designs to their hearts’ content. www.rolf-spectacles.comJG
12th February 2014The Board of Directors and Employees of Silhouette International Schmied AG in Linz, Austria, have announced the passing of visionary Silhouette founder, Arnold Schmied Sr., on 31st January 2014. Schmied was an eyewear pioneer. He and his wife Anneliese founded Silhouette in 1964, and the company celebrates its 50th anniversary this year.
Schmied was among the first to visualize eyewear as a fashion accessory; he had the desire to create frames that enabled people to look chic and smart, while improving their vision. He was an enthusiastic entrepreneurial spirit, with courage and a passion for eyewear. He initiated many concepts that led the brand to be distributed worldwide, and now employs 1500 people internationally.
The Eyestylist team extends sincerest condolences to the Silhouette family, friends and employees. www.silhouette.comJG
10th February 2014 The French label ‘When I was Seven7een’ is already a hit in the finest optical stores in Paris, and we happen to know that their eyewear cases have just become available in London. Regis Dajczman, designer and founder, first worked with leather at the age of 17 with two guys called the Baileys Brothers. Since then he has been working as an art director but he has come back to leather to create his own line featuring handmade bags, phone holders, bracelets, and….Libellule (in English, “dragonfly“), a chic, easy-to-carry eyewear case.
Eyestylist is delighted to announce that we have five of these leather cases by When I was Seven7een that we shall be giving as Spring gifts. For a chance to win, find full details on our Facebook page today. CN
Designs Created by and for Young Style Enthusiasts
7th February 2014 Children are aware of fashion from a very early age – they love clothes and accessories. Here are three designs that fulfill youngsters desire to look fashionable and cool. Ic! berlin went right to the source when they wanted to design eyewear for kids, and asked children to participate. There were a series of fun workshops at ic! berlin HQ in Germany, and with guidance from the design team, the little protégés sketched, built and wore their own eyewear creations. Among the results is this distinctive frame – colours of peace (above). The children understood immediately that their designs needed to be wearable and realistic, and they adjusted their designs as the project proceeded. Eyewear entrepreneurs of the future! www.ic-berlin.de
Looking ahead to spring and summer, Zoobug has pinpointed a look that kids love – the wayfarer adapted to little faces. Dr. Julie Le, Zoobug’s creator, knows that protecting children’s eyes from harsh sun rays is essential, and the sunglasses are fitted with polarized lenses, plus possessing lots of youth appeal. ZB (above) is available in pretty pastels inspired by 1950’s and 60’s fashion, including this lovely combination of turquoise and sand. Colourful and playful! Coming soon on www.zoobug.com
Colour dominates in fashion this season and children will love this grown up design, precisely scaled for small faces, in rich berry tones and black. The wonderful vintage shape in Glynn (above) by Oliver Goldsmith Mini Icons, features a keyhole bridge and chic colours of Very Cherry and black. Sunglass sophistication for budding style connoisseurs! www.olivergoldsmith.comJG
5th February 2014 Feel free to pep up your eyewear wardrobe with upbeat colours. The liveliest blue and violet hues are a direction that add to a general trend in fashion, and should be a staple for a variety of complexions and hair colours – particularly those who wish for an alternative to a classic black or tortoise.
At German independent label Funk, and from their FUNKroyal collection, model Fortuna also packs a punch. Dieter Funk told Eyestylist, “When I did the first “scribble” for this, the focus was to create a metal frame for women, extraordinary, classy, harmonic and with style, just a little bit oversized because this is sexy. When I had the shape, I looked at the colour concept on the temples. I am very lucky that I have a big stock of original vintage acetate colours. I have had my eye on this blue pattern effect in combination with metal.” www.funk-eyewear.comCN
Swedish designer Anna-Karin Karlsson creates romantic, original eyewear with magical adornment. Among the splendid designs in her new optical collection is Down Lush Boulevard – a charming retro interpretation in black acetate, and white shell roses with gold accents, cascade on the front. Each frame is crafted and drilled by hand. Order romantic Down Lush Boulevard now online via www.annakarinkarlsson.comJG
For an optical frame with elegance and chic, Zero 04 is a beautiful example. Smooth black acetate is finely sculpted with a lifted brow, and then majestically accented with a vintage rolled gold brow bar that extends to the sides. Finest Seven designer Jesse Stevens studied sculpture, and his understanding of the metier brings unique distinction to the frame designs. www.finestseven.comJG
A strong message for ophthalmic frames this year is colour – clear, lucid colour, frequently augmented with sleek marbled effects in contrasting tones. Purple is a favourite – and Anne et Valentin offers this elegant version – D-Tail – in acetate with sharp, clean lines, softened by a murmur of retro/vintage – updated for the present day. The graceful cat eye shape unites dynamism and femininity, accentuating delicate features with an air of assertiveness. www.aneetvalentin.comJG
Colour is keynote at Modelliani – the Italian brand features contemporary shapes with distinct colour harmony. N. Punto 39 is a lovely springtime optical choice in acetate in fresh green tones, balanced with a tortoiseshell camouflage marbled effect. The front has a matt finish, providing a subtle contrast to the frame design. To discover more Mondelliani frames, visit www.mondelliani.itJG
1st February 2014 Perfectly styled on Laurenne Juliet in the latest short movie, Laurenne in Three from Formento+Formento – www.formento2.com, Christian Roth announces the launch of his latest super-size glamorous sunglass style, Opposites Attract. The handcrafted acetate shape features the designer’s signature kaleidoscopic effect, and, says Roth, undergoes a manufacturing process that is long and extremely meticulous.
1st February 2014A visit to Musée Carnavalet is always a pleasure, and particularly when there is a special exhibition. The Museum is comprised of two townhouses in The Marais, and has a splendid historical pedigree. The Marquise de Sévigné lived there for almost twenty years, and the extensive collections and interiors at Carnavalet enables visitors to view life as enjoyed by aristocracy through several centuries. In addition to the permanent collection, the current exhibition pays homage to fashion trends from La Belle Epoque to the 1930’s. Roman d’une Garde-Robe (The Novel of a Wardrobe) traces the emergence of the grand haute couture houses in Paris through the remarkable wardrobe of Alice Alleaume, a “vendeuse” or chief saleswoman at Chéruit on Place Vendome.
The influence of Alleaume’s family – her couturière mother Adéle, and her sister Hortense, who worked at Worth – and the professional life and tastes of these fashionable Parisians, are the factors that orchestrate the exhibition. Elegant fashions from Worth, Jeanne Lavin, Chéruit, plus superb accessories – hats, gloves, bags and jewellery are included. Beautifully handwritten letters, documents, photographs and sales records, transport the viewer to a gilded age of glamour and refined style. When in Paris – a visit to The Novel of a Wardrobe will enchant and delight. While at Musée Carnavalet, take time to view the beautiful gardens – they are a joy all year – and especially now when the lovely greenery and colourful flowers bring a cheerful note to a winter’s day. Exhibition continues through 16 March. www.carnavalet.paris.fr JG
Photos: Top image: Evening Dress Debut XXème Siècle Rose Silk Mousseline with paillettes, ivory tulle and embroidery of pearls and sequins. Stéphane Piera/Galleria/Roger-ViolletShoes: Stéphane Piera/Galleria/Roger-Viollet Hellstern Droites Reserves
Designer Fabienne Coudray-Meisel combines trend-led colourful patterned acetate – tortoise and stripes – with clear translucent colour – in model Blink from the Volte Face Collection. A line that showcases French quality design and an innovative presentation of colours and materials, the Volte Face collection is available through J.F. Rey stockists and at J.F.Rey Soho (www.jfreysoho.com) in New York.
J.F.Rey Soho, 448 West Broadway New York, NY 10012
1st February 2014 Located between Gdansk and Gdynia, Sopot is a Polish seaside town, known for its art nouveau architecture and beautiful historic parks and gardens. This is the location of OOG, a concept store for niche eyewear brands such as Gotti, ic! berlin, Oscar Magnuson, Andy Wolf, Mykita and REIZ Germany.
“In Poland, there are few optical stores like this that promote true eyewear design over the mass-produced,” explains owner and eyewear distributor, Adam Kujawski. “I am sure it will change in the future, but for now we are one of just 5 or 6 stores working with interesting independent brands.”
An architect-designed interior, the work of Polish interior designers, Manadesign – www.manadesign.pl, was completed in July 2013. The ambience encourages customers to try on as many glasses as they wish in a comfortable, stylish yet homely atmosphere they will return to for new inspiration.
“We have decided to give our customers a choice of different labels,” adds Kujawski, “and we aim to bring more brands that we love to Poland, as soon as we can.”
1st February 2014The maze of little Parisian streets in The Marais is always fun to visit and enjoy a stroll. So much French history can be explored in this area, plus there are many irresistible cafe’s, galleries and shops! Sometimes, a new treasure is discovered, which I found recently while scurrying down the rue de Parc Royal. Nestled in between an art gallery and a café, and only steps away from Musée Picasso and Musée Cognac Jay, is a charming boutique – Zoe Lee Shoes. Peering into the shop, it was evident that the designs were beautifully crafted and lovingly created.
The talented woman behind these must-have shoes is a cosmopolitan young lady, the daughter of a Japanese mother and Canadian father. Zoe Lee studied fashion design at Central St. Martin’s in London. However, she became interested in shoes, and continued her design studies at The Royal College of Art, where she was mentored by the shoe-king, Manolo Blahnik. Her impressive story includes working with Alexander McQueen, Vivienne Westwood, Betty Jackson and John Rocha, plus she spent several years designing in Barcelona. Then she moved back to London, and during a visit to Paris, happened to find this boutique that was available. Lee successfully navigated infamous French bureaucracy to open her little boutique jewel last October.
“I’m inspired by everything – travel, exhibitions and seeing beautiful materials,” says Lee, “and I love leather and enjoy sourcing fabrics for the shoes. When I design, I like to cover different types of people who would like to wear the designs.” Family owned companies in Italy, who have been crafting fine shoes for three and four generations, make the shoes. The materials used in Zoe Lee shoes are luxurious and creative. Printed kidskin, bronzed patent, brushed linen, nubuck with laser techniques, and incredibly soft suede are all included in her shoe designs. I tried on several pairs and they feel wonderful – like a cosy hug for your feet. Zoe Lee’s innovative interpretations in materials add to the pleasure of wearing the shoes.
Zoe Lee is among the discerning accessory designers who value and appreciate haute couture quality, beautiful materials, and expert craftsmanship. When in Paris, definitely pop into her shop, and her shoes can be ordered online. Zoe also commented that her mother is an eyewear collector – Eyestylist looks forward to meeting her! www.zoelee.co.ukJG