Intrepid sunglass and optical designs characterise the latest collections. Designers express their style leadership with beautiful shapes in amazing colours. So celebrate autumn with Eyestylist this month for eyewear news, designer celebrations, innovative boutiques and fashion exhibitions. Click on all sections – Reviews, Boutiques, Designer of the Month and City Guides – for style and cultural adventures.
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28th October 2014 New refining colouration techniques give grey tones a transparent or matt richness that works well with many complexions. Grey has an intriguing history in fashion, music and art. Rembrandt used complex greys in his paintings; in the Eighteenth century, grey was a very stylish colour for men and women; and in the 19th century composer Claude Debussy was inspired by grey tones he saw in a Whistler painting.
Current eyewear collections feature noble variations of grey, including Anna-Karin Karlsson’s striking acetate optical design Stockholm Syndrome (above), with finely textured sides. www.annakarinkarlsson.com
Fastens Seatbelt by Suzy Glam demonstrates the lovely acetate colour gradations that give grey tones shining luminosity, and features Suzy’s signature beveled grace. www.suzyglam.com
Segal in Matt Elephant Grey acetate by Claire Goldsmith Eyewear from the CG Lite collection highlights cool, uncluttered design in a contemporary mode. www.olivergoldsmith.com
Pewter Grey Pure Titanium by Adrian Marwitz with a streamlined sculpted frame front is lightweight, and expertly handcrafted in Germany. www.adrianmarwitz.comJG
24th October 2014 Take your cue from some of the finest independent eyewear labels and replace chunky frames with slim, slender well defined shapes for the winter season. Newly launched collections point to a a determined move away from thick and geeky to a more measured style where the frames compliment and enhance features.
For cool elegance Danish brand Kilsgaard has this minimal look sewn up: their aluminium designs are super light and flattering and will do everything you will want them to do in terms of durability and comfort (above, Kilsgaard Eyewear, www.kilsgaard-eyewear.com)
Morgenthal Frederics in the US are also sensitive to the demand for thinner, lighter styling for men. They release model Brad, a finely shaped deep rectangle handcrafted from crystal acetate in France. The colour choice of green with butterscotch is particularly handsome, in my view. www.morgenthalfrederics.com
Then there’s the same slimline trend emerging in other materials. Wood eyewear leader Rolf Spectacles serves up innovation upon innovation. Their new Evolved collection, launched in Paris last month, proposes a choice of elegantly handcrafted delicate spectacles with clean paired down dimensions – model Foursome 102 is made from a refined Smoked Figured Eucalyptus for lightness and unique shine and texture. The style is one of 17 new designs produced in five woods, four special and four stone types. www.rolfspectacles.comCN
21st October 2014 The 2014 edition of the Hall of Frames/Eyestylist Newcomer Awards celebrates winners from three different countries. Announced in Stuttgart, Kirk & Kirk in the UK was awarded Gold for their entry – Curie – a stylish acrylic design handcrafted in France. Nathanael Wenger, Hall of Frames Director, presented the citation to Jason Kirk. Wenger said: “We congratulate the winners and thank all of our entrants. The opticians had a challenging time selecting the winners with the diverse range of styles, creativity and materials. We wish everyone a bright future.” Kirk commented: “Karen and I want to thank Hall of Frames, Eyestylist and the opticians for this opportunity. Our concept is to create frames that are a bit different, yet very wearable.” www.kirkandkirk.com
Cultural and artisanal influences fuse for the Silver winner Vava. A Berlin based Portuguese brand made in Italy, Vava was cited for their sunglass design WL001. www.vavaeyewear.com
Parisian Jérémy Tarian received the Bronze award for his streamlined, elegant two-tone acetate design – Madeleine – handmade in France. www.jeremytarian.com
Congratulations to all the winners from Hall of Frames/Eyestylist, and we wish you every success! www.hallofframes.chJG
Photos for Eyestylist by Katharina Müller Top Photo: Nathanael Wenger, Jason Kirk and Dirk Geismann; Angelika wearing Vava
17th October 2014 Red is associated with many qualities and emotions: passion, courage, strong energy, leadership, joy, and in Asian culture – happiness. The “red carpet” is significant for ceremonial and state occasions. It’s also a favourite fashion colour, as Albert Kreimler at Akris in Switzerland showed so elegantly in his collection, worn with frames designed especially for Akris by Silhouette. www.akris.chwww.silhouette.com
Eyewear designers love red too – as Gai Gherardi at l.a. Eyeworks notes: “Red is a powerful marker!” The Los Angeles based company always features red in their collections, and the latest is the cheerful Lusty Red frame called Flower Pot. www.laeyeworks.com
“Red…one of my favourite colours indeed”, says Daniel Benner at Benner KG in Germany. Benner’s red expression is in acetate and stainless steel, with dramatic brow treatment. www.benner-eyewear.com
Theo believes in “redder that red” – and their newest signature red design Mille+02 in transparent acetate really glows! A subtle nod to vintage highlights the fluid frame shape.www.theo.be JG
14th October 2014The winners of the 2014 Hall of Frames/Eyestylist Newcomer Awards will be announced in Stuttgart on 19th October. The finalists include a diverse group of designers, who have started their independent labels within the past five years: Adrian Marwitz; Dominik Gasser; Feb31st; Gouv/Au; Kirk & Kirk (above: K&K Curie); Larke Optics; Res/Rei; Tarian; Vava and Von Arkel.
The 2013 Gold winner Susanne Klemm at Suzy Glam commented about the award: “For a company that had just started, it was great to win this award. Not only for the publicity, but also it was very pleasant to see that the German/Swiss opticians appreciate our designs. We are a design driven company and do not make what the market asks for, so we never know how things work out. Therefore, by getting this award, it showed us that these markets like what we are doing. It has a special place at our office, because we were very proud of it.” www.suzyglam.com
Eric Balzan at Hapter, the 2013 Silver winner added: “The Hall of Frames/Eyestylist Newcomer Award represents an important kick-off for every newcomer designer brand wishing to distribute in the German speaking area. The direct and unsolicited vote of visiting opticians, most of whom do not know your brand yet, gives you a clear clue on the potential of your project in the market. Further, for a young brand like HAPTER it was a big honour to be within the finalists, together with projects and persons we totally admire and love like Suzy Glam and Coblens.” www.hapter.it
10th October 2014Christian Roth and Eric Domege are European designers who have made Miami their home. Their adopted country has made a strong impression, plus meeting interesting people. Carlos Venegas, the owner of Artsee, the avant-garde eyewear boutique in South Beach – the chic, fun hotspot of Miami, became a friend – and they created a special frame design in his honour.
Christian and Eric commented: “We call the design ‘C for Carlos’ by his first name, not only because we really like him very much, but we also adore and respect his concept of an independent luxury eyewear store. He carries exquisite and exclusive collections and his personal style attracts true luxury eyewear consumers. We treasure him.”
The acetate design combines the spirit of fun and fashion, and the colours are gorgeous (top image; tortoiseshell and lush lavender). In addition to the colours shown here, there is a stunning coffee and coral combination. The inner lens contrasting detail on the frames further enhances the exquisite colourations. For more details, visit www.christian-roth.com
6th October 2014Trendsetting eyewear designers who shone at the Paris eyewear fashion exhibition Silmo were those who refuse to play it safe. This was a show where we saw more snazzy unconventional shapes on the horizon – modified pentagons, hexagons and aviators – and a fabulous amount of dabbling in 3d concepts, shape deconstruction, asymmetry, and playful contrasts – unpolished and polished surfaces or inner and outer rims, ideas we look forward to presenting in future posts.
New season colour is what you want it to be, classic and demure, or bright and airy. Green, tangerine and opaque 50s ivory have made their way into many lines, as have distinctive marbled and coloured tortoise and camo effects that were in general lighter and more translucent that in recent collections. Highlights included:
Andy Wolf from Austria showed an impressive handcrafted collection. One of their showstopping statement sunnies was a round, sparkling design with diamante inlay – model Wonder E, pictured above. www.andy-wolf.at.
Grey Ant’s “rule-breaker” Grant Krajecki from New York showed us lots of unique design tweaks that are out there on their own. Model Composite – one of his more classical styles – expressed the direction for novel multifaceted shapes and fresh translucent acetate colour – this one is called “sepia”. See more at www.greyant.com
Anne & Valentin’s model Wendy is part of the High Line Concept released by the French designer label in Paris last month. The concept is inspiring: the frames all feature a dramatic brow line and the 3d element and exceptional colour contrasts are playful and sophisticated. Don’t miss seeing or trying these! www.annetetvalentin.com
Lunettes Kollektion from Germany were also on a roll. Not only are they doing exciting collabs – with the likes of Christopher Shannon and Michael van der Ham, their own line has expanded with a new 11 piece artisanal edition focused on strong minimal shapes made in premium Italian materials. Model “Grand Tour” is a brilliant example – stripping the aviator shape back to basics for the clever modern take, in black – still a top fashion choice if you choose the right sharp shaping and quirky small-label artisan glamour. Find out more at www.lunetteskollektion.com
Silmo Paris is an annual trade event attended by leading eyewear brands and designers. Silmo 2015 takes place on 25-28th September 2015. www.silmoparis.comCN
3rd October 2014 Zurich Hall of Frames opens this weekend in the beautiful surroundings of the Gartensaal Des Kongresshauses, a building steeped in tradition. The masters of eyewear design are exhibiting and include: Götti, Claire Goldsmith, Suzy Glam, Coblens, Kirk & Kirk, Tarian, Lafont, Rolf, Hapter, Adrian Marwitz, Kilsgaard, and Vera Wang among others. Götti Switzerland will show the latest collection that includes Tonky – above. Elegance, simplicity, and modernity trio stylishly in this graceful sunglass design with an acetate front and titanium temples for perfect fit and comfort. www.gotti.ch
Hapter designers Eric Balzan and Mirko Forti continue their pioneering techniques with the launch of M02M – an iconic design that introduces their new trademark: a wide, dominate bridge in contrasting fabric. The round lens shape creates a slick retro mountain look. www.hapter.it
Combining classic colours with the unexpected is an Adrian Marwitz signature. In Urban Stranger No. 2 grey titanium is highlighted with an accent of sunny yellow. Trend alert: grey is sophisticated and chic for frame designs. www.adrianmarwitz.comwww.hallofframes.chJG
1st October 2014 After the launch of a first titanium collection for 2014, Australian brand Niloca opened their own flagship store, Scoogle. Located in Southbank Melbourne, the shop is offering the complete Niloca range of eyewear (a hot topic at this year’s Silmo Paris), alongside other handpicked speciality labels including Theo and Hoet. “Set in a post Botanica new world Gothica, the store is serviced, focused on and inviting for all serious eyewear fashionistas,” explained one of the team to Eyestylist.
The store’s design theme and location were serendipitously entwined even before the location had been found. Housed in the new Guilfoyle building the botanic theme integrates seamlessly with its namesake, Sir William Robert Guilfoyle, a recognised international botanist. A trademark feature of Sir William’s work was the Conservatory, similarly an internal feature of the Niloca store. From the oxodised iron drawers to the reclaimed Australian hardwood desk and deep coir carpet, the design of the interior is perfectly in tune with the unique merchandise within. Open 7 days a week by appointment. www.scoogle.com.au
Barbara McReynolds and Gai Gherardi Co-founders/Co-designers
1st October 2014 Creative colour vibrations, unexpected shapes, and innovative materials have characterised l.a.Eyeworks for thirty-five years. Barbara McReynolds and Gai Gherardi are genuine pioneers in eyewear – they launched their first collection in 1979 – long before eyewear had achieved the stylish accolades that glasses now enjoy.
When McReynolds and Gherardi decided to embark on eyewear design, they believed it was time to open up a new kind of conversation about glasses. Their philosophy is that frames are more than just something you wear. Eyewear also expresses individuality and personal expression. McReynolds and Gherardi are purists in their approach to eyewear – each design is hand-drawn – the first step on a path of meticulous production. They use only the finest materials that are shaped by a combination of technology and hand-finished crafting.
The designer’s restless imaginations and ability to absorb from their surroundings has resulted in an expanding legacy of glasses that balance innovation with wear-ability. They recall: “Seeing Andy Warhol’s work in the 1960s was such an incredible revelation to us. Warhol’s ideas gave us permission to break the rules. Watching a video with the legendary jazz singer Anita O’Day was the inspiration for another design.”
Do McReynolds and Gherardi have a particular l.a. Eyeworks moment or experience that is especially memorable? “We’re easily overwhelmed when we think of all the incredible opportunities we’ve been offered and the moments of transformation we’ve witnessed. Different memories flash across the radar at different times. The other day, we recalled the marvellous story a customer told us about walking on the Great Wall of China, and spotting something colourful on the ground. On closer inspection, that “something” was an l.a. Eyeworks cleaning cloth!”
What do McReynolds and Gherardi feel are the biggest changes in eyewear during a thirty-five year period? “Without a doubt, from design to production to communication, rapid evolutions in technology have challenged the possibilities for making glasses. Some developments – like eyewear as some kind of venture capital enterprise – are not so interesting to us. Nevertheless, the ‘basics’ of glasses as apparatus, sensitivity to the future of fashion, great storytelling, and the principles of good design have never really changed.”
As the year-long anniversary celebrations commence, already the exciting news includes l.a. Eyeworks induction to the prestigious CFDA – Council of Fashion Designers of America. A new website is to be launched this autumn, and the latest collection previewed at SILMO is a tribute to Gai and Barbara’s creativity and signature flair for colour. Autumn 2014 also unveils a new series of l.a. Eyeworks “Uncensored Visions” – dazzling portraits that feature a sensational group of performers and models wearing iconic l.a. Eyeworks designs. McReynolds and Gherardi’s creative vision has established an exciting eyewear legend. www.laeyeworks.comJG
Photo of Gai Gherardi exclusively for Eyestylist.com by Gilles Stüssi All Rights Reserved
One of the super glam Swiss made Strada del Sole sunglass styles in an exclusive collaboration between Pascal Zuber, designer of the eponymous label, and supermodel Nadine Strittmatter. Two shapes have been created in traditional black or tortoise; each individual product requires more than 80 stages, many of which are carried out by hand. According to Strittmatter, “This collaboration has been a good experience, as I have been able to express my creative side. The Swiss label is attractive in its simplicity, with the addition of a luxury touch, high quality materials and authentic artisan production. ” Available in shops from mid October. www.stradadelsole.ch CN
For 2015, Ella has us falling for acetate adorned with modern metal clips. RVS by V. from Turkey highlights its metal collection this season and combines it perfectly with colourful Mazzucchelli acetate in a totally different approach. “The result is a beautiful harmony of classic gold and silver metals,” explains designer Vidal Erkohen. Keep your eye on this collection for spectacular mirrors combined with classical shapes and luxe finishes such as tortoise and horn. www.rvsbyv.comCN
A classic from the Portuguese label, Piedade is, like all the styles in this line, named after designer Ramiro Paulino’s relatives. “I never met her,” he explains, “but as a child I fantasized that grandmother “Piedade” would have been a bullfighter, inspired by the one photo that existed of her, in which she used structured hair and a lace shirt.” This sweet and elegant handmade style is available in four colours including the tinted crystal we highlight here. www.paulinospectacles.comCN
1st October 2014 Theo can always be relied upon to surprise, tantalize, and push the boundaries. That is their unique signature. The new Hypnotic design is actually a piece of jewellery, and it’s easy to fall under the spell of this lovely object in stainless steel and palladium, or gold coated. At first, the wearer could imagine it being a brooch – however, the featherweight design can also be a necklace, and there is a ribbon included, so the possibilities are limitless.
This is a special Limited Edition by theo, with only one-hundred pieces made of each striking model, and each piece is numbered on the reverse, as well as on the box – the “little black box” providing an exclusive touch. Beauty, individuality and originality – a theo triumph! www.theo.beJGTop photo: Hypnotic H2 in Palladium
Tortoiseshell and Turquoise combine to provide a spontaneous and charismatic design – Scapa – from Face à Face Paris. Tortoiseshell is spot-on trend, and turquoise highlights the fine points of the frame shape, including the extended temple and bevelled temple tips. A diverse selection of colours is available. More details at www.faceaface-paris.comJG
A signature trend this season is semi-rimless frames with innovative interpretations. Coppe and Sid’s new collection has desirable, statement styles with vivid colour including Charlotte (above). The acetate frames are “enriched” by a nylon string inserted in the lower or upper part of the rim. Classic yet updated shapes, a cosmopolitan approach to design, and Italian craftsmanship ensure fine quality, and Coppe+Sid’s signature Lapis Lazuli stone is deftly tucked into the end-pieces. For more C+S collection news visit www.coppeandsid.comJG
Lightweight frames are always a brilliant addition to an eyewear wardrobe. Silhouette, a specialist in barely there designs has a new ultra fine full rim style with a smart screwless snap hinge. Urban LITE is said to be the thinnest full-rim plastic eyewear on the market. The collection is created in high-tech SPX+ plastic for super strength and stability and there is a wide choice of 20 fashionable colours, including favourites such as Havana, bright red and purple. www.silhouette.comCN
1st October 2014 Fashion icons, Presidents, Hollywood stars, and avant-garde artists were all captured on film by Horst (1906-1999) – one of the leading photographers of the 20th century. A fascinating retrospective of his work – that spanned six decades – is celebrated at the Victoria & Albert Museum in London. Horst’s stylish photos, plus haute couture garments by Parisian couturiers Chanel, Lavin, Molyneux and Vionnet, magazines, film footage, previously unpublished vintage prints, and ninety-four Vogue covers are all on display.
Horst’s illustrious career straddled the opulence of pre-war Parisian haute couture and the rise of ready-to-wear in New York. He photographed – among many others – Coco Chanel, Elsa Schiaparelli, President Harry Truman, Marlene Dietrich, Noël Coward, Merle Oberon, and his photos of Lisa Fonssagrives helped to launch her glittering modelling career.
Born in Weissenfels, Germany, Horst fled Europe just prior to the outbreak of the Second World War. In 1943, he enlisted into the American Army and became a U.S. citizen. He also explored new photography dimensions with nude studies, travel photographs from the Middle East, and patterns created from natural forms, plus work for House and Garden magazine. The scope of his work is imaginatively diverse, and he creatively traversed the worlds of art, fashion, design, theatre and high society – all with superb style. Horst: Photographer of Style continues through 4 January 2015. www.vam.ac.ukJG
Photos: Top image: Muriel Maxwell, American Vogue 1939 Condé Nast/Horst Estate Middle image: Roy Stevens/Time & Life Pictures/Getty Images Bottom photo: Condé Nast/Horst Estate