Colour has transformed eyewear, and this month, we explore its many dimensions. Colour variations highlight REVIEWS, and the Designer of the Month is one of the ultimate eyewear creators. In BOUTIQUES, discover a new shop in a trendy American city. For leisurely summer pursuits this month you’ll find books and beach resorts in CITY GUIDES. Click oneyestylist for eyewear innovation and inspiration…..JG
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30th August 2012 As promised, in celebration of August 2012, we are featuring a series of holiday photos today, selected from those that you have kindly been sending in. Thank you for sharing, and enjoy these happy moments for the last sunny day of the month. Pictured Above: Model Palladium 001, by the Turkish eyewear label RVS by V. location, Southern Turkey. www.rvsbyv.com
Mustique by RockOptika, a bestseller for the UK based brand, on the road. Image by RockOptika’s Tom Herrington, aka (in case you didn’t know) The “Sharp Suited Shooter”…To see more photography by Tom, visit http://thesharpsuitedshooter.com/ To see the full RockOptika sunglass collection, visit www.rockoptika.co.uk
Emilie wears Selima Optique’s Amanda sunglasses in the Egyptian desert. This is such a great style and fits so well in this stunning location. Find the Amanda sunglasses here: http://selimaoptique.com/products/view/60
Lila wears Aswan by L.G.R. Sunglasses, featuring the label’s new colourful UV-protective mirrored lenses. Image provided courtesy of L.G.R. Sunglasses. www.lgr-sunglasses.com Happy memories of the holidays! CN
29th August 2012 Barbara McReynolds and Gai Gherardi, founders and designers of l.a.Eyeworks discuss with Eyestylist one of their favourite topics – Colour!
On colour in eyeglasses – Barbara: When it’s done correctly, a unique frame colour will tune into a special aspect of someone’s personality, and provoke it….amplify it!
Gai: Working with the ecology of colour is such an incredible experience. Colour can be a lure and it can issue a challenge. It can set you apart or blend you in. What I love most is when colour associates us with memory, both individually and collectively.
On inspiration – Gai: The inspiration for colour changes constantly. But if you ask me what I’ve been thinking about lately, it’s Bic lighters, African wax prints, and the colours of cake frostings – particularly when the frosting is a few days old, and starts to get a little chalky and crusty – those are beautiful tones!
On a favourite colour – Barbara: If there is a foundation colour for l.a.Eyeworks, it’s red.
Gai: We’re passionate about red! Red has such structure and volume to it. It’s a colour you can build from, and we often do. The challenge is finding the right red; the one that’s really vibrating with the mood and the season.
On suitability of colours in eyewear – Barbara: Every colour is suitable for eyewear.
Gai: Yes, just when you think a colour could never find a place, something will come along – whether it’s a shape, a material, a finish, a texture, or a pattern — and suddenly, it works! www.laeyeworks.comJG
26th August 2012 When I mentioned to a Dutch friend that I was going to the Hague, he said “oh, you must visit Kurhaus – and you’ll want to stay!” He was so right! Officially called the Steigenberger Kurhaus Hotel of The Hague, this grand hotel’s history goes back nearly two hundred years. A five-star establishment, the rooms are refreshing and sleek, and equipped with all mod cons. The Kurzaal restaurant is the showpiece – it was originally a concert hall, and it’s a beautiful setting from breakfast to a romantic dinner, with the beautiful glass Kurhaus Dome, frescos and 19th century paintings in full view above this tranquil oasis. As a former concert hall, the acoustics are superb, and enhance the daily live music. Unfortunately, I didn’t have time to sample the culinary excellence (a good reason to return!)
With its delightful beachfront location – this is an ideal destination for an end of summer getaway, a lovely escape with historical notes of The Gilded Age, and its many leisurely, nostalgic pleasures. www.kurhaus.nlJG
26th August 2012 The celebration of Kirk Originals’ Twenty Collection transports me back to when I first met Jason and Karen Kirk in London – twenty years ago! He had produced his first collection, and I was impressed with the creativity, quality, originality, and Jason’s passion for eyewear. First impressions last – twenty years on, Kirk Originals continues to design stylish handmade frames with authenticity, power and punch. The Twenty Collection’s Stripe (above) is beautifully crafted in acetate with a shape that blends retro and contemporary. Great colours too – vermillion, jet, ice and cobalt. Happy Anniversary KO! www.kirkoriginals.comJG
24th August 2012 I find it very exciting that some brands are now producing new sunglasses collections for Autumn/Winter, not just Spring/Summer. London-based Zanzan was introduced in 2009 by Gareth Townshend and Megan Trimble and presents itself as a fashion label for fashion lovers. Its latest launch for Autumn/Winter features rich vintage acetate, jewel tones such as soft yellow and ruby red, and classics like crystal and tortoise. Produced in limited editions, the designs are bold and theatrical, with details such as trendy gloss or matt finishes and statement patterning. Eyestylist.com asked Megan Trimble about the label’s direction and its plans for 2013, which include the launch of a first spectacles collection. (Above: Erzulie by Zanzan).
Why are you producing your frames in the UK? Please explain the benefits? We can make a really first rate product here and ‘Handmade in England’ is important to us. The benefit, for us, is the proximity but for our customers it means that we can produce something that’s uncompromised creatively and a little more exclusive.
Are you sticking with a small elite fashion clientele?
No, we are growing. Scale is important for fashion companies and the aim of every business should be ‘juggernaut’. If you don’t sell, then you lose the right to be creative – and the capacity – so it’s important. We’re producing collections in Italy and France for S/S 2013 and a supporting cast of products – fancy sunglass straps, sunglass cases and more. Your campaign styling is extremely cool and sexy. Do you do your own shoots? Who is involved?
I am responsible for overall creative direction of everything we do but we work with a photographer called Jon Gorrigan and the stylist, Simone Konu. Both are brilliant. We are also very reliant on the very talented hairdresser, Carl Reeves. We flew him in!
Are you expanding into new stores?
It’s important for us to be in stores that see things the same way we do. Our distribution has, and will be, tightly controlled but that doesn’t exclude opticians. We’re really a fashion brand that makes glasses but we do have an optical collection planned for next year.
Where can you find the new collection of Zanzan sunglasses?
This collection is available at www.farfetch.com It’s an experiment really. You can also buy the sunglasses in Departmentstore Quartier 206, Berlin. We just fell in love with the store on a recent trip, happened to have our collection one us and they loved it! What does Zanzan represent for you?
Fantasy. Joy. Fun. Zanzan is the pursuit of a dream and a passion to create really beautiful things. ‘If you want reality get on a bus’!
22nd August 2012 Australian based Jono Hennessy has just released a lovely collection uniting the beauty of Liberty of London’s colourful fabrics, and Hennessy’s frame expertise. Louise Sceats explains: “Our joy is working with people who are craftsmen and love what they make. For us to use Liberty of London fabrics with our special interlayer lamination technique is a great honour. Each acetate block is laminated individually, and then milled into the eyewear shape.
“Behind clear acetate, the jewel like fabrics come alive in colour and detail, and they look great, especially against skin tones. In this year’s selection of Limited Edition fabrics, we are inspired by the vibrant, yet cool colours of the islands in Greece and italy. We hope that by using Liberty of London fabrics, we are bringing attention to Liberty’s historic skill and design.” www.jonohennessy.com JG
20th August 2012 Colour has always been the hallmark of the Kirk Originals collections. Jason and Karen Kirk (above) share with Eyestylist.com their fascination with colour.
“Colour expresses emotion, and coloured eyewear makes a suggestion about the personality behind the eyewear. It fascinated us that the same colour can suggest different things according to its context or the timing of its use. The Beam Collection is a riot of bold hues and has been very well received. Amethyst, coral, aquamarine are all unusual colours in optics, but the public has embraced them. We suspect that these bright, joyful colours are a welcome antidote to the atmosphere of economic gloom.
“Our new autumn launch, Twenty, is a collection that celebrates our first twenty years of optical design. It incorporates traits of our work from different collections through the years, one of which is our use of colour, which will be bold, saturated, but sophisticated and suggesting warmth and confidence. It is amazing how colours can feel right one season, and then not quite so right the following year. We work very much on personal feeling.” www.kirkoriginals.com JG
17th August 2012 Colour is a key component of the eyewear created by Marseille based spectacles company J.F. Rey, the label headed by the eponymous designer. We asked Jean-Francois and his wife, Joëlle about their love of bright colours and contrasts in spectacle design. (Above: model JF 2431).
Which bright colours are traditionally successful in your collections? While black, silver, grey, brown and tortoiseshell are still the great classics; red, cobalt blue, cream, aniseed and various shades of purple are the most popular bright colours. Over and above the choice of colours themselves, our pieces are successful for their colour combinations, and particularly our use of dual colours on the inside and outside of the frame.
A recent example or our colour work is our Pixel concept, inspired by graphic arts. The frames have subtle dual colour schemes, with the colours shading off or graduating into each other. With a choice of 4 to 10 colours per model, a selection of stylish, sophisticated colours and some highly successful matt/gloss effects, we have gone against the traditional codes. Without compromising on creativity or innovation, we are constantly experimenting on new harmonies and new contrasts. The colours we choose are a driving force in our product development.
Why do you encourage bright, happy and vibrant colours? Our eyewear expresses its colour differences loud and clear. Colour is one of the key features of the brand, which uses a surprising, unusual colour palette to support J.F.Rey’s creative, upmarket positioning. The colour combinations we develop are the result of sophisticated research: the colours are chosen with great care and the lacquering, which is all done by hand, is of an outstanding quality.
Acetate plays a key role, with its soft, silky feel and explosive colour contrasts. Joëlle guides the choice of colour in our collections. While our customers like to say that J.F.Rey is behind the designs, Jea-Francois’s wife is really the colourist. Her character, love of good taste and sensitivity to the harmony between materials and shades enhances our collections. Continue reading “Colour codes”→
15th August 2012 Zoobug – the children’s eyewear specialist – has expanded its child-friendly frame selection with new shapes and delightful colours, designed to please both youngsters and their parents. Kids will love the comfort of glasses that are gentle on their delicate skin, and the colours: blue/orange, fuchsia/white, red/white and pink/fuchsia. Parents will appreciate the soft, adjustable rubber material, which ensures a snug and comfortable fit. Plus there is a new detachable headband.
“Infants and toddlers need to get used to wearing their first frames with as little anxiety as possible,” says Dr. Julie Diem Le, Zoobug Director. This charming collection of Minis ensures that children will adapt easily to wearing glasses. www.zoobug.comJG
13th August 2012 Glistening gold, shocking pink, or delicate pattern inspired by Turkish tiles? RVS by V. from Turkey works with punchy colours and trendsetting tonal combinations as well as introducing innovative concepts for patterned frames. As part of our celebration on colour this month, Eyestylist.com asked RVS by V.’s Vidal Erkohen to explain his love of colour in eyewear. (Above: Custom gold and blue mirroring with @muratoptik for RVS Eyewear models “Morro” and “Naomi”).
Take me back to when you first started producing your own RVS by V. designs….what were your groundbreaking colours and colour combos then? At first my goal was to combine and use colours that were not being used at the time especially since bright colours were not yet back in fashion as they are today. Two of the most unusual colours I used and combined at the time were bright orange and silver which was very successful among our followers.
How has your work in colour developed and what do you feel is your signature style today? I think the fact we are able to combine any colours that our clients request is a big difference compared to other eyewear brands out there. I love how colours work together and even though most people shy away from wearing bright ones, let alone combining them with each other, we love to present something unusual with each model we release. We have now started to use patterned acetates and are combining them with plain colours as well as prints like those used for our “Iznik” collaboration. I am especially fond of our combination of pale pink and sky blue acetate which was named by one of our good clients (Coyote Degroot of Labrabbit Optics) as the “Miami Vice” combination. It’s one of my favorites; even though the colour combo may sound feminine, it balances well and looks as good on a man is it does on a woman.
Comment on your use of opaque and how that effects the colours you use? Ever since we released our brand, our motto has been to make the eyewear with the best matt finish out there and although many have persuaded us to release a shiny collection I am strongly against it. Our brand is, and always will be made with a matt finish. I believe it is our Matt finish that balances out our vibrant colours and represents the look of a pair of RVS frames. Also, the feel of our frames when worn is another aspect that is very important for me and I believe the matt finish we use makes wearing and touching our frames all the more enjoyable.
You have just started to use more patterned colour – the new model Celine above is a good example – please comment; it is quite a different look to your use of colour blocking? Yes, the patterned acetate is a first for us and a sign of what is to come in the future. The colours such as Camoflauge and Deep Purple we have used are colours that I believe women may not be used to at first but will open a new perspective on the classic larger sized ladies’ glasses out there. The use of colour and all their combinations offers even the most classic design dozens of different faces. This is one of our main goals, keeping things classic without repeating what has been done in the past. Continue reading “Colour codes”→
10th August 2012The newest addition to the striking Cabrio series by Bieke Hoet, of Hoet Design Studio in Belgium, is a delightful multicolour version. Optimal eye protection is assured with the dramatic shape that fits comfortably on the face. The colour variations are playful – ocean blue temples with a touch of orange, or red splashed with vivid yellow – very stylish and distinctive. www.cabrio-eyewear.euJG
9th August 2012 Fendi, in partnership with Maserati, has produced this luxury aviator which, it says, is made by hand in precious materials including fine metals and leather. It is a very light frame, produced in Italy, and it features the yellow Fendi logo on the lens. It is a classic interpretation of the aviator with the slightly unusual addition of colour – actually that is a yellow that I think should be worn a lot more. It is really out there so if you are looking for more subtle, you might want to consider the version that comes in a traditional grey leather/gunmetal with green lenses. www.fendi.comCN
8th August 2012 Contrary to what you’d expect, classic natural tones can make a bold statement in eyewear; they are far from being the quieter, more understated choice as they can be in apparel and clothes. For next season, it’s the patterning in the natural toned acetate specs that has caught my eye, the grainy wood-effects, the innovative new ways of representing animal prints and tortoise, alongside lovely translucent crystal-clear nudes that are both delicate and a little bit edgy for the darker winter months. I’ve picked out two frames that illustrate two of these directions for the autumn.
Dita’s Lindl is a handmade oversized acetate frame (top and above) featuring their signature optical hex screw hinges. It comes in a few colours including a grainy black and this Tokyo tortoise finish, which, as the pictures show, has character in the form of the stripy textured effect. It is perfectly in tune with new season trends. £350 available from Dita Legends, www.ditalegends.com
In contrast, this Cutler & Gross model shows how the pure transparency of acetate in subtle, nude tones can be so elegant and feminine..it is a look to look for through the winter. I’ve studied all the models in the latest Cutler & Gross collections this week and I have some specific ones to recommend; they are a delight. This model combines two sensuous and soft tones, the front in one, the arms in the other. The soft rounded eye shape is a nice take on retro for the coming season, as expected from this classic British specs label. www.cutlerandgross.comCN
For more reports on Autumn/Winter trends, written and brought to you exclusively by the Editors at Eyestylist.com, keep your eye on this space.
6th August 2012Ottica iSee is in Santa Maria degli Angeli, just near the pretty medieval town of Assisi in Italy. The store concentrates on special labels like BlueMagicEye, Claire Goldsmith, Massada and Ksubi. I recently saw their window, a work of art featuring colourful, giant specs. Owner Alessio Brunozzi explained that he selected the shapes and had them printed on paper. A carpenter helped them cut the five different spectacle shapes from wood sheets and they were painted in bright colours. It was intensive work, says Alessio, but clearly worthwhile. www.ottica-isee.itCN
Ottica iSee di Alessio Brunozzi, Via San Pio X, 74, 06081 Santa Maria degli Angeli, Assisi, Italy
3rd August 2012“We love glasses – we can honestly say that we are passionate about glasses, so in some ways, it’s a hobby for us,” says Dirk Geissmann (above left) and Nathanael Wenger, (right) organisers of Hall of Frames. “We started Hall of Frames five years ago in a designer hotel in Zurich. A year later, other brands wanted to join, so it grew quite fast.” Indeed, HOF has a waiting list to participate in the event, that takes place this year in Zurich on October 14th and 15th. Due to the success of the show, and the great interest from German companies, HOF is delighted to announce a Stuttgart show this autumn – to be held on October 21st and 22nd. In addition, The Hall of Frames Newcomer Award will be launched – in partnership with Eyestylist.com – (watch this space for exciting details and more news!) – and the winner will be announced at the Stuttgart show.
To add even more interest to the event, Dirk and Nath have found unusual spaces for the exhibitors and their presentations. “A suitable location is very important to the success of HOF. In Zurich, HOF is in the Papiersaal, an historic industrial building surrounded by modern architecture. For Stuttgart, the location is great, completely dedicated to cars. The Meilenwerk is a hot spot for car fanatics. From antique models to modern cars, everything is on show. So our slogan for the event in Stuttgart could be cars and frames”!
In future posts, Eyestylist.com will be visiting with some of the independent designers who will be exhibiting at these two important events. For more information, visit www.hallofframes.chJG
An explosion of bright, cheerful colours highights Farfale by Francis Klein. The frame features characteristics that are particularly unique – the exaggerated cat eye shape, bevelled detailing, mini-flowers, and distinctive ornamentation. The Parisian based family company allow their creative imaginations to soar with exceptional results! Available at the delightful Parisian boutique on The Left Bank and at www.francisklein.comJG
Lafont is internationally recognised for their innovative colour interpretations and creative styling. This stunning frame evokes fond memories of viewing decorative arts in Vienna, that richly creative Art Nouveau period in Austrian history that continues to fascinate. Smooth acetate and lacy weave metal in an intricate design creates edgy sunglasses in an unusual colour combo – burnt orange and purple. The perfect enhancer for autumn fashions! www.lafont.comJG
One of the amazing aspects of colour is how the totally unexpected can work so effectively – such as pairing purple and turquoise. Natalia 109 is a vivid new colour mixture from Antwerp based Theo – glossy layered acetate features inlaid texture on the top of the fame and the temples. The effect is riveting – bold, bright and beautiful! www.theo.beJG
Tortoise is an all-time favourite, and it’s lovely to see that it is enjoying a fashionable renaissance. l.a. eyeworks has done a marvellous interpretation of tortoise with Big Wheel – an epic play of marble against tortoise. There is a feeling of volume in the design, yet a minimalist aura prevails as well. The high quality acetate ensures a frame of fantastic quality and beauty. www.laeyeworks.comJG
The rich, sun drenched colours of the desert are found in the new sunglass collection from Isson in Australia. The flat fronted round shape deepens the dramatic temple volume, and the frames are fitted with aspheric (flat) anti-reflection coated lenses. Designer Catherine Federici has captured the essence of the desert in Ella, with intense colouration and bold shaping. www.isson.com.auJG
1st August 2012 Xavier Derome bounds into the Blois train station, and the first thing I notice are his sunglasses — quietly distinctive, effortlessly luxurious and exuding confident quality. Blois is situated in the Loire Valley – that sumptuous region of France with its beautiful river and amazing chateaux. This area is Derome’s professional and personal territory – he was raised here, and many family members live here too – close to the historical, magical chateaux, and where Derome creates his own spell with beautifully crafted eyewear.
We drive by one of the most famous Chateau – Chambord – and as I’ve never been, Xavier graciously stops so we can have coffee in the garden, while admiring the extravagant architectural dream of King François 1. What inspires you, I ask Xavier? He looks up from his coffee and surveys the magnificence around him. “All of this,” he responds, gesturing to the beauty of the green forest, the open spaces, the superb chateau, the Loire River. “I was born in this region; it’s in my blood.”
Studying history at La Sorbonne didn’t really prepare Derome for the eyewear world. However, his father was involved in the production of frames, and this is where the seeds for his future career were sown. “What I really wanted to do was go live in Vietnam, to move away from France.” However, he believes in fate, and began to become interested in eyewear. “But I knew,” says Xavier, “that if I wanted to do this, it would be a long road to design eyewear, and I needed the skills. I learnt production at the ‘grass roots’ and the new technology. Eyewear production is still very special, and I developed a fondess for acetate, because with acetate, I could make jewellery too.”
We move onto Derome’s production facilities in the small village of Bracieux, and Flo Flo, Xavier’s adorable little miniature dachshund, greets us with enthusiastic barking. When all ten employees of Derome Brenner are at work, the factory is a beehive of activity. “I love machines and all this fascinates me,” says Derome, “and these Italian machines are able to do many processes, which are all intricate.” Derome Brenner frames are acclaimed for their exceptional craftsmanship, and the distinctive multiple layering of acetate that gives the impression of volume, without ever being heavy. The acetate is polished in special tumblers filled with wood chips, and Xavier savours holding each piece in his hands to observe the polishing process. No detail is overlooked; as a result, quantities are very small. “We keep no stock, and many frames are made to order. Everything is finished by hand – there are over 60 different steps. Only hand finishing can produce superior quality,” notes Derome, “and this requires concentration and good eyes.”
Xavier’s concentration, determination, creativity, passion and perseverance won him a SILMO d’OR in 2009, and his frames are sold worldwide. Recently, he lanched jewellery, which has met with great success. “I’ve carved a nice in the market,” says Derome, “and I have my own production plant; I can travel; I love my work; I love my job.” And eyewear fans across the globe love his beautiful frames. www.deromebrenner.comJG
1st August 2012 At the beginning of the 20th century, women’s clothing was corseted and mobility was limited with long, flowing and layered skirts. By the end of the century, a revolution had taken place, including natural free shaping. Fashion – A History of the 20th Century beautifully illustrates through text and stunning photos the enormous changes that took place, and explores the influence that designers such as Gabrielle Chanel, Christian Dior, Mario Fortuny, Yves Saint Laurent and many more, demonstrated over the decades. The impressive assortment of distinctive designs, plus hats, bags, shoes has been collected by The Kyoto Costume Institute. This is an inspirational and informative book for fashion and social history enthusiasts. Published by TASCHEN www.taschen.comJG
Christian Dior photo (below) copyright Takashi Hatakeyama
Model Simon embodies everything I love about the frames by Turkish label RVS by V. Colour is one of their trademarks and they offer unique ideas on colour combos, as this version of Simon clearly illustrates. My current favourites are this trendsetting matt pink with tortoise and the same model in a gorgeously soft yellow with purple temples, both exemplary of the collection in that they move dramatically away from more classic tonal pairings. Typical here is the clever matt finish which is both edgy and extremely soft and comfortable on the skin. To find out more about RVS by V. visit www.rvsbyv.comCN
1st August 2012 Nashville is the trendy American city affectionately known as “The Music City” and is the delightful setting for the chic, new boutique opened by Barton Perreira. Certain areas of Nashville are so sought after, that Bill Barton commented: “We were on a waiting list for two years to get this particular street, and we are very proud to open in Nashville. It’s an exciting city with old world charm and soul. The city offers so much diversity – music (ALL TYPES!) arts, food, great colleges, etc. Nashville seems to be a place more and more people are attracted to, because it’s a great place to live. We are also very fortunate to be partnering with opticians Inga Brittingham and Carla Carpenter. The girls make buying eyewear a fantastic experience. They have a great eye for what looks good, and they are both accomplished opticians.”
The shop is located in the centre of Nashville’s luxury shopping district, where many unusual restaurants and bars can be found, and attracts local residents, as well as international clientele. Architect David Spinelli, who also created the Aspen, Colorado store Barton Perreira opened last year, designed the Nashville boutique as well. “We chose to work with David again because he intrinsically understands the brand and our design philosophy,” Barton says. The interior of the boutique is open and airy, with beautiful wood and streamlined displays for the Barton Perriera collection. Inga and Carla add: “We make fitting eyewear fun and love to make our clients feel at home. But best of all, we love to see them in beautiful frames!” Barton Perreira Green Hills Nashville, TN 37215 www.bartonperreira.com JG
Created by Baptiste Vuerich, this is a young label from Barcelona which recycles and hand finishes these wood frames from skateboards. There is an undercurrent of eco-friendly products in eyewear this year and they have a fresh, handcrafted look that is becoming sought after. Here the layered maple wood used to make skateboards is strong and flexible and when dyed, can be very, very colourful. As seen perfectly in this style No 268, the lively colour tones are not even but delicately graduated. The clean and classic shape of this design is particularly dramatic in this bold colour combo of turquoise and yellow. Looking forward to seeing more from this innovative BCN label soon. It’s brilliant! www.vuerichb.comCN
This season, the Danish brand Kilsgaard has caught my eye because of its fresh colour schemes in metal. The frames I have seen are in block tones of red, emerald green and turquoise, sometimes paired with tortoise arms and sometimes in full colour. It’s a very uplifting collection, partly because of the injection of positive colour and partly because the designs have very elegantly honed shapes. Really gorgeous to wear!