The magnificent landscape of the Australian Outback is keynote in the latest frame selections by Jono Hennessy. Outback Stripes draws on nature’s fabulous colourations, then translated into beautifully crafted Mazzacchelli acetate with flattering stripes. Style 8385 is part of the stunning collection that Jono Hennessy will present at SILMO in Paris. www.jonohennessy.com JG
Like so many positive attributes that are formed in life, the foundation begins in childhood. For youngsters who need corrective eye care, wearing frames is now an exciting adventure – even kids who don’t require frames want to wear them. This decisive attitude is the result of designers creating eyewear that has mega-appeal to youngsters – and their parents. Styles for the autumn season include Montreal (above) an enduring favourite frame for children from Red Kids Optical. In tortoiseshell acetate, the design provides a grown-up look with vintage reflections, scaled to fit little faces. More charming styles for youngsters from the Dutch label at www.redoptical.com
Multiple award winning Danish brand LINDBERG creates frames for children that are famed for style, flexibility, durability and superb colourations, plus being crafted in hypoallergenic material. Marion is a neat little shape with a curved nose bridge, very sleek temple detailing, and heaps of fashion cred that kids will love. www.lindberg.com
Bright, fun and cheerful! Frames by Zoobug are celebrated for their wonderful colours, super shapes, and materials combine safety features and style. ZB1010 is a unisex design for children in TR90 – the Swiss material that is lightweight, yet strong and durable. Discover more exciting styles for babies to twelve-year-olds from the British brand at www.zoobug.com
Babies and toddlers often need spectacles too – and Lafont Paris has a long and respected history for creating frames that cater to kid’s needs. Expertise, excellence, and experience merge to create frames for little ones that are safe, flexible, and in shapes and colours that appeal to children. Toupie in rose pink features an oval shape, and charming printed temple details. www.lafont.com
Cool and inspiring confidence, this youngster expresses his stylistic signature in JF Rey design Anthony, for boys six-to-eight years old. Original shaping in quality acetate ensures comfort and durability from the innovative French label. Discover more trendy frames for children from four-to-sixteen-years old at www.jfrey.fr JG
Orgreen’s optical collection offers a multitude of beautiful frame choices. The Danish label has a glittering array of designs in evocative colours, and streamlined shapes, in ultra-light yet super sturdy Titanium. An elegant, rich blue tone characterises Blush, with a touch of retro in the subtle cat-eye shape. www.orgreenoptics.com JG
A chance visit to the Austrian Museum of Applied Arts – The MAK – produced an unexpected and delightful surprise – a retrospective on Austrian eyewear designer Robert La Roche. From the early 1970’s to the turn of the century, the Vienna-born designer captivated the international fashion, film and eyewear world with his pioneering designs. Robert La Roche: Personal View effectively displays the ingenuity, craftsmanship, and creativity of his eyewear, with the unique colourations, shapes and textures that heralded a new direction in frame design.
In addition to hundreds of La Roche frames on display, design drawings, advertisements, magazine editorials and photographs are also included in the exhibit. Marketing was a forte of Robert La Roche, and some of his campaigns are now as legendary as the glasses themselves.
Another highlight was a series of talks and forums open to the public at the MAK. Participants in one event included Christian Wolf from ROLF Spectacles in The Tyrol. Christian and Christoph Egger from Gloryfy spoke on a panel with La Roche, and gave Austrian insight into creating eyewear in today’s marketplace. Christian commented: “It was an honour to be invited to have a discussion with Robert himself, an icon regarding eyewear design and distribution – not only in Austria. The discussion was very interesting as we sell different markets, the marketing is different, and we had a lot to share. There was also an eyewear show with designers from a Vienna school. For me, as marketing manager of ROLF, the exhibition is great because of his advertising campaigns; the collaborations with his work are inspiring. It was a great chance to get tips and tricks from Robert! For all eyewear addicts, I highly recommend this exhibition.”
On the occasion of the exhibition, La Roche commented: “I’d say I’ve had the pleasure of making four million customers not only see better, but also look better…it’s how I sum up my life’s work. Everyone of those frames bears my name, as well as the word ‘Vienne’ – a little reference to the city of their origin, a metropolis of creativity, culture and design.” Robert La Roche: Personal View continues at the MAK through 24th September. If readers are fortunate to visit Vienna and the MAK, you can also enjoy the enchanting Fashion Utopias: Haute Couture in the Graphic Arts. This is a charming collection of graphic artworks from the late 15th Century to the 1930’s. Haute Couture existed long before the 20th Century! More details on both exhibitions at www.MAK.at www.rolf-spectacles.com JG
Photo: top image Robert La Roche sunglasses model S-49 Photo Gerhard Heller, ca. 1976
Gone are the days when neutral colours meant traditional hues, and may have lacked distinction or notable fashion assets. Nowadays, relaxed, flexible style guidelines enable a wide variety of colours to be classified as “neutral.” For spectacle wearers this is an opportunity to experiment with some delicious “new neutrals” to transform your autumn fashion aura – with stylish eloquence.
An exotic shape – in a splendid shade called Tea Camo (above) – distinguishes Innski, with its exaggerated round form by l.a. Eyeworks. Handcrafted in Italy, the acetate design claims its own distinctive, desirable eyewear personality! www.laeyeworks.com
Kirsten and Lars Iversen believe in positive contributions to society. For each Karmoie frame sold, the Norwegian based design duo donate a pair of corrective glasses to developing countries. Their graceful eyewear designs include Nucleus in kelp acetate with contrasting kelp/oak temples. www.karmoie.com
Nature’s natural beauty crystallises the inspiration for SALT. Optics designs by Californian David Rose. Lorna is from the latest collection that will be featured at SILMO next month. The refined contrast between the oyster frame, and inner temple colouration, enhance this elegant design. www.saltoptics.com
Crystal frames are a flashback to vintage and the newest interpretations are a striking unification of contemporary and retro. The Austrian label Neubau includes Georg model number T008, with sheer transparency and streamlined features. www.neubau-eyewear.com JG
For late summer holidays and autumn adventures, Tavat has launched stunning sunglasses with trendy and contemporary styling. Double bridge designs are sought after for their unique qualities and dramatic expression. Split is a chic, round metal frame with intricate detailing on the temples. An exciting, distinctive shape that is suitable for men and women. Find more creative Tavat designs at www.tavat-eyewear.com JG
Vera Wang’s beautiful sunglasses collection pinpoints classical elegance, contemporary detailing and strong shapes that ensure exceptional desirability, and – quite naturally – an excellent celebrity following. Cue Gemma Styles, Krystal Rodriguez, and Aimee Kritikos, influencers with edgy fashion credentials and the ability to mix street style and high-end fashion quite effortlessly.
In the group pictured, Styles (pictured left) wears Wang’s new model Osa, a design that combines the fashionista circular eye shape with a chic interpretation of the double bridge.
Friends Aimee Kritikos (above, centre) and Krystal Rodriguez (above, far right) wear Hesse, a strong, solid oversize black acetate flattop with discreet logo engraving and Lido, the dazzling new zyl cat eye style of the collection, bejewelled on front and sides.
World-renowned fashion designer Vera Wang is known for exquisite taste and a modern approach to feminine glamour and beauty. Her new eyewear releases, translated from the fashion collection, show an exciting twist on current trends and a taste for the dramatic with exotic flourishes of embellishment completing the picture. Find more details on the full collection including models Hesse, Lido and Osa at www.verawang.com / www.kenmarkoptical.com CN
Photo (top) by kind permission of Kenmark Optical
3D printed frames are a continuing trend, and several young companies have embrased the technology to produce very lightweight, technically focused, stylish frames. The Danish label Monoqool highlights the weightless feel, cool design and comfort, with soft elegant shapes that suit a variety of lifestyles where practicality is an absolute necessity. Made in Denmark using the latest technology, the frames, such as model Friday, are finely proportioned and gently textured. Each pair of glasses consists of more than 400 thin layers, magically transforming white polyamide powder into a light flexible frame. Each one is then coloured and handpolished for a classy finish that is soft, tactile and pleasurable to wear. More details on this Danish independent label at www.monoqool.com CN
What feeds a Creative Spirit? For Brent Zerger, Director of Communications at l.a. Eyeworks in California, it’s the arts, architecture, eyewear and food! Insightful, curious, blessed with a deliciously wicked sense of humour, and a passionate eyewear advocate, Brent shares his views on life and living with Eyestylist.
Please give us a brief profile about your professional career. “After graduate school, my professional career began in the contemporary art world. I worked for nearly a decade in a curatorial/programming capacity with The Museum of Contemporary Art (MOCA) here in Los Angeles; also as an independent curator; and as a public art officer helping to oversee the artworks in the MTA transit system of L.A. county. The second big chapter of my career began as the manager of a retail store for l.a. Eyeworks that opened in 2002. I became Director of Communication for the company in 2007 and the story continues!”
What sparked your passion in eyewear? “True story: my passion for eyewear began as a passion for l.a. Eyeworks as a brand. Growing up in the relatively rural Midwest, there weren’t a lot of cultural avenues to explore – and I was hungry! But I remember somehow getting my hands on Interview magazine and taping the l.a. Eyeworks portrait ads to my bedroom wall. I was hypnotised by their glamour, mystery, and incredible energy. That I would one day stand in Greg Gorman’s studio to watch him shoot one of those portraits is such a meaningful completion of a circle for me.”
If you could have been born in another era, what century would you choose, and why? “Truly, there isn’t one I would choose. I’m happy in this time and place. BUT…if I could have misspent my young adulthood in southern California in the 1960’s, I imagine that would have been a very fine thing.”
l.a.Eyeworks is based in Los Angeles – do you think the city continues to be an international, inspirational source for art, fashion, etc.? “For many reasons, it’s hard to comprehend the breadth of Los Angeles and the scale of the things that are produced here. It’s a full spectrum show. From the scientific geniuses working at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory to the worst reality TV, from superstars of the art world to Star Wars-branded non-dairy coffee creamer, love it or hate it: what L.A. ‘says’ is incredibly influential. Los Angeles is so engaging to me because it’s constantly reinventing itself with little regard to the past, and an anxious grasp for the future. It can be daring, gorgeous, audacious, and horrible all at the same time. Whatever the case, it’s intensely visual and I love that. At this moment, what’s particularly interesting to me is watching these huge production fields – television, film, music – as they pivot to adapt to the realities of the proliferating on-demand economy. While this dynamic is being felt in every field (including fashion, travel, transportation, and so on), I’m keeping a keen eye on Hollywood because the stakes are so enormous. It’s a sea change of operatic proportions!”
Nowadays, who do you think most influences eyewear styles and market appeal? “I doubt my answers to this question would surprise anyone. Whether it’s celebrities or red carpet designers, or massive ad campaigns by mega-labels, I pay attention…and then I don’t. There’s the influence of those who know how to meet all the expectations, and then there’s the influence of those who startle the world by going their own way. Personally, I’m so much more interested in any person I meet who sees their glasses as a way to stand out from the crowd. I don’t care if the frames came from a yard sale or a boutique; when I see anyone who’s wearing glasses to express their individuality and not their allegiance to trend, that’s when I get excited.”
Please select a favourite fashion moment that inspires you. “What comes immediately to mind is the Apollo 11 spacesuit worn by Buzz Aldrin to walk on the surface of the moon in 1969. That helmet with the gold mirrored shield? Now that’s a radical, avant-garde garment! To me, the space suit says everything about the future we’ve come to live: the integration of apparatus and the body, not to mention the role of outfit as a metaphor for the complex relationship between humans and their environment. Right behind that as a close runner-up would be the fishtail gown that Divine wore in John Waters “Pink Flamingos,” which today looks almost like a prophecy!” www.laeyeworks.com JG
Top image: “Los Angeles is a fertile ground for amazing architecture.” Brent attending an event at the Fitzpatrick-Leland House in Laurel Canyon, designed by architect R.M. Schindler (1936). https://makcenter.org The MAK Center for Art & Architecture oversees the Fitzpatrick-Leland House http://www.hereslookingatyoula.com/#hlay
Eyewear designs with a double bridge bring new interest and excitement to frames. Frequently linked to vintage, the latest interpretations combine echoes of retro, with a thoroughly contemporary mood. There are stylish and smart sunglasses and optical designs from which to choose. Among our favourites is the dynamic Calabar (above) with blue lenses by Luca Gnecchi Ruscone at L.G.R in Rome – its dramatic shape is further enhanced with a stainless steel double-bridge and pince-nez for superb comfort. www.lgrworld.com
A swashbuckling aviator design by Sven Götti at Götti Switzerland highlights Yashi, in ultra- light titanium. The sleek frame also features Götti’s patented Spin & Stow folding technique for easy care and frame safety. www.gotti.ch
Reflecting on the 1970’s inspired this cool frame in tortoiseshell acetate by Jono Hennessy in Australia. The stainless steel double bridge and temple detailing provide an unexpected twist to the distinctive design. www.jonohennessy.com
JF Rey in France captures vintage and contemporary styling with JF2752 – a striking frame in pewter, featuring an expressive round shape and slit temples. www.jfrey.fr JG