RCA x 100% Optical

London’s optical fair 100% has announced the shortlisted designs in its annual design competition in collaboration with the RCA. The finalists are: Tabitha Ringwood (1st Year Womenswear – Footwear); Annie Foo (1st Year Womenswear – Footwear); Hazel Stark (2nd Year Textiles – Print); Louis Alderson-Bythell (2nd Year Womenswear – Footwear); Alice Potts (1st Year Womenswear – Footwear) and Becky Hong (1st Year Millinery).

Visionary 2017 is an eyewear design project directed by Accessories, Footwear & Millinery tutor Flora McLean in collaboration with 100% Optical, to highlight new talent and creativity in the field of eyewear design. This year, the competition asked students to consider the wearer and their activities and lifestyle, by designing one piece for a specific person and specific usage.

Above: Project name: My Tribe – by Becky Hong

Out with our rose: by Tabitha Ringwood
Out With Our Rose by Tabitha Ringwood
The Positive Hacker by Louis Alderson-Bythell
The Positive Hacker by Louis Alderson-Bythell

In its fourth year, the competition is judged by a panel of eyewear experts from the British eyewear industry including Jason Kirk (of Kirk & Kirk), Tom Broughton (Cubitts) and Lawrence Jenkins (eyewear designer). The RCA finalists’ prototypes will be on display at 100% Optical in February when the winner will also be announced. For more information visit www.100percentoptical.com CN

Lool Eyewear: Barcelona’s innovative newcomer

Barcelona is a centre of modern creativity, with a contemporary art, food, design and music scene that has become internationally renowned for its imaginative and consistently avant-garde direction. The appearance of a new young eyewear brand coming into the market at a high level of quality and innovation is therefore unsurprising, but nonetheless makes for an exciting entry given the level of research and design precision interwoven in a product that is functional, light, and technically precise. Startup Lool Eyewear is located in a warehouse studio just behind MACBA and the large open space which hums with skateboarders. Following a single trade fair (Silmo 2016), the label, created by talented product designer Aris Rubio and entrepreneur Alex Carrasco, is already looking at increasing the size of its workshop to accommodate fast-paced international demand since the Paris show. The frames have seen immediate popularity in Barcelona, stocked by leading optical retailers such as Les Lunettes, Bassol and DM Optics.

lool eyewear
The Grid – lool eyewear

“Lool is a multidisciplinary studio”, Alex told Eyestylist when we visited the label earlier this month. “We manufacture in series from metal sheets of steel (11R51). They are worked by hand, one by one in a precise technical process, combining the industrial and manual, man and machine.”

The Grid - Lool Eyewear
The Grid architectural “concept” – Lool Eyewear

Influenced by retrofuturism in the context of disciplines such as architecture and urbanism, Lool has already launched three specific sheet metal stainless steel collections, and a patented screwless hinge – The Hub – which features across their ranges and offers maximum durability and easy assembly. The frames themselves are built with an architectural precision where, for example, material is removed on the inside of the frame, reducing weight and changing the look and general feel when worn. Rubio’s methodology is to study the points of  tension around the front of the frame and take away what is not required from the inside, creating excellent lightness and flexibility in the metal material.

Lool’s three impressive collections – Tectonic, Stereotomic and The Grid, offer a strong starting point for a young team and their position in central Barcelona, where other likeminded designers are working in innovative collaborations, is likely to inspire further success as innovators of the future. Lool Eyewear will show at Opti Munich in January 2017. More information at www.looleyewear.com CN

Merry & Bright!

‘Tis is the season to celebrate; be with loved ones and good friends; and delight in fun-filled festivities. It’s also the perfect time to enhance your holiday fashions with glamorous frames that sparkle and glow. Allow your radiance to shine in LINDBERG’s style 2239 (top image) from the Precious Collection. Eighteen carat rose gold and yellow gold feature in this contemporary form with artisan handcrafting. www.lindberg.com

Lil' Tears of the Moon by Anna-Karin Karlsson
Lil’ Tears of the Moon by Anna-Karin Karlsson

Unforgettable brilliance heralds Anna-Karin Karlsson’s gleaming design – Lil’ Tears of the Moon. The acetate frame flourishes with pearls and rhinestones – created to make a merry and memorable entrance! www.annakarinkarlsson.com

Subsolar by Falvin Eyewear
Subsolar by Falvin Eyewear

Birgitte Falvin’s creative skills as a jewellery designer are now embellishing distinctive eyewear. The elegant Subsolar features titanium customised with a smooth surface of matte aubergine and shiny rose gold. The luxurious diamond setting beautifully highlights the delicate cat-eye silhouette of the design. Discover more about the Danish brand at www.falvin.dk

Amarilla by Vera Wang
Amarilla by Vera Wang

Amarilla by Vera Wang is the ideal accessory for après ski on sunny chalet terraces, or on the sun-drenched sands of the Caribbean. Vera’s latest capsule fashion collection is the inspiration for these sleek sunglasses in luminous acetate, accented with Swarovski crystals at the hinge, and along the top of the temple. www.kenmarkoptical.com JG

The Eyestylist team extends warmest wishes for a Happy and Festive Holiday Season to all our readers and sponsors!

Mille + 54 by theo

Millennials! That generation (approximately 1982-2004) – maturing similarly with the enhancement of computers and progressive technology – have enjoyed many opportunities and choices.  Theo offers unique possibilities for this inspired group, with contemporary frames and fresh, original colour combinations – which includes Mille + 54 striking in black and turquoise – from the new theo Mille 50+ collection. Crafted in titanium, the designs are durable – yet lightweight. Sleek, modern and beautifully imagined, the new theo 50+ collection will appeal equally to Babyboomers and Generation X as well. www.theo.be JG

Awesome designs for youngsters

Establishing a foundation of healthy eye care early in life is rewarding – and beneficial – for both parents and their children. With fun and appealing frame designs for babies through to teenagers, prescription glasses offer children better eyesight, plus safety and creative designs – making it awe-inspiring to wear them. Design, comfort and quality unite in the stylish designs by JF Rey. Gabriel (above) is an eye-catching acetate frame with graphic elements abundant in shape, design and colouration. Discover more at www.jfrey.fr for info on the inventive new Kids & Teens collection.


Active youngsters require frames that are sturdy and durable, as well as distinguishing fashion characteristics. All elements are incorporated in the charming Red Kids Eyewear collection. Crafted in The Netherlands, the frames include replaceable flex systems to meet any over-enthusiastic childhood antics. Ghent in quality acetate is a sleek, uncluttered design appealing to young fashionistas. www.redoptical.com


Children will love this beautiful frame from LINDBERG with its grown up look superbly scaled for little faces. Marc features a tortoiseshell front and titanium sides, and distinctive detailing captures the essence of LINDBERG quality and style. www.lindberg.com


New silhouettes highlight Zoobug’s Acetate Fashion Collection and include this smart style ZB1003. The colourations are lovely – Tortoise and Lilac (above) plus radiant bright tones of orange and blue, and a gradient purple. An OBE Flex-Uno hinge ensures comfort and fine fit. www.zoobug.com

Tobogan by LAFONT
Tobogan by LAFONT

Just like adults – kids appreciate the Retro look, and Tobogan by Lafont is a cool little shape for children aged 4-7. The round shape, temple details, and circular end tips further enhance the classic, vintage look. www.lafont.com JG



New opening: OOG Concept Store, Gdansk

A modern, inspired interior is the focus at the second concept store by OOG, located in the Old Town of Gdansk, in Poland. Eyewear expert and owner, Adam Kujawski told Eyestylist: “The interior was designed by Marta Napiorkowska-Losin from Manadesign studio. As with our first store in Sopot, we left her to come up with our new concept.” 


Inspired by the old-fashioned lifestyle of Gdansk, Napiorkowska-Losin has kept the mood of OOG’s original store, whilst playing with a contrast of natural materials, metal fittings and a fresh colour direction. The result is a trendsetting store design and a reference for the new wave of modern independent optical retail openings in Europe for 2017.


A very special eye test room has been created in the basement of the building. “During the Second World War, the old town of Gdansk and the building was completely destroyed,” explains Kujawski. “It was rebuilt with a mix of bricks that were left in the ruins. In the walls, it is possible to see an incredible mix of Gothic bricks and much more recent ones from the 20th century.”

3d graffiti on the inside: by
3d graffiti on the inside: by Oskar Podolski

Graphic artist Oskar Podolski aka OESU One (www.oesuone.com) has also been involved in the design project downstairs, creating a 3d graffiti with a quote by Jose Saramago, roughly translating: “Everybody’s world is what his eyes can see.”

Address: OOG Concept store, Szeroka 17, Gdansk, Poland. For more information about OOG in Poland visit www.oog.com.pl CN

Explorer – Karmoie

An elegantly refined aviator shape – Explorer – in luminous crystal acetate is among the remarkable new designs from Karmoie. The Norwegian brand features exemplary quality Mazzucchelli acetate and Carl Zeiss lenses, with the frames solely handcrafted and polished in Italy. Explorer is also available in Black, Twig, Forest and Havana. Discover more about this environmentally friendly brand at www.karmoie.com JG

Symphony of colour

An imaginative spectrum of colour invigorates eyewear designs with savvy, eye-opening results. Whether solid colours, bi-or tri-colourations, plus fun variations, ravishing colour in frame designs can become a wondrous, bold adventure. Vividly bright or elegantly muted, frame colours offer intriguing options. Oliviero Zanon’s collection for Res/Rei includes the striking Amalfi (above) in superb hues of Mazzucchelli acetate with a seductive retro shape. www.resrei.com

Showoff by WOOW Eyewear
Showoff by WOOW Eyewear

Vibrant colour highlights Showoff by WOOW – an oversized frame with a chic double bridge, and streamlined composition. www.wooweyewear.com

Victor by Kirk & Kirk
Victor by Kirk & Kirk

Victor by Kirk & Kirk is an engaging mix of dark forest green on a lighter lime base which results in a glorious shade of Emerald. The tones react differently in changing light, and give the illusion of dancing colours. www.kirkandkirk.com

Ronette clutch by Pollipo'
Ronette clutch by Pollipo’

The colour excitement extends to eyewear accessories too. Italian craftsmanship excels in Pollipo’s clutch case – Ronette – in an exclusive patchwork of gold and rose gold in a crocodile pattern on natural Tuscan leather. www.pollipocchiali.it



Mykita for the German Collective

The German Collective – a group of innovative optical retail experts and friends with stores around the country – have created a new collaborative frame with German eyewear company, MYKITA. VOLT, a sporty, unisex design, in keeping with the aesthetics and technical concept of Mykita Mylon, is limited to 100 pieces and will only be available through the German Collective members’ stores (from 3rd December 2016). Produced in storm grey with ultra flat lenses, the frame is made using a 3D printing technique called Selective Laser Sintering.


“We started our collaboration with Garrett Leight, and this is our latest project,” explains Akram Husseini from Klar Augenoptik. “We love great design and good friendship and we think that by doing a limited edition together it makes our stores especially interesting. The next edition will come in Spring 2017.”

The German Collective includes five optical stores: 6MillionGlasses, Specs Berlin, Steingasse 14, Leidmann and Klar. The stores specialise in independent collections and artisan eyewear and they share a passion for design and quality. CN

So right now: oversized, über cool

More extreme proportions lend a dynamic look to eyewear for women as 2017 approaches. The rise of the oversized metal aviator as a “statement” has boosted this direction, and style influencers are continuing to sport the design as the ultimate fashion accessory, whether they require prescription lenses or not. New quality aviator shapes are a staple at many of the small and medium sized independent eyewear labels specialising in metal. One such example, the German independent label Coblens, produces distinctive aviator designs in high grade titanium: pictured above, model 30066 from their Luna Park line. www.coblens.com

In the acetate collections too, a broad offering of more substantial shapes include deeper, generous sized cat eyes and cool retro “geek-chic-revival” designs.

Sierra by Spectacle Eyeworks
Sierra / Pussy Galore Collection by Spectacle Eyeworks

Spectacle Eyeworks have created several new designs in this vein, including the elegant Sierra in the Pussy Galore Collection. In subtle acetate colours, pretty striated versions, the style works the fuller shape with fine lines and the characteristic pointed top corners of the cateye.


Having a ball by Christian Roth
Having A Ball by Christian Roth

Christian Roth, the iconic American “designer” eyewear label, now partnered with Dita, proposes a similar femininity in a large round sixties-inspired design. The designer describes the frame as “a look that is straight out of a beatnik Greenwich Village coffee shop” when fitted with optical lenses. It’s one of several frames in the new line that bridge the old and the new, playing with modern colourways and materials with expertise and know-how. More information on Christian Roth’s new line at www.christianroth.com CN



Bel by Vue dc

Art deco overtones have long been a popular theme in eyewear design. Vue dc, the French artisan label, has particular expertise in translating deco motifs in frames that offer character and design flair. A new addition in their refined acetate collection for the coming year, model Bel boasts the classic Vue dc colour palette – the red and black is always stunning for the festive season – combined with a cat’s eye shape that’s classical and instantly glamorous. The four colour choices are black, red/black, tortoise and white with a pearlised effect. More artisan frames by Vue dc including their outstanding Swarovski pieces at www.vuedc.fr CN

Magical “metality”

The dictionary definition of “metal” doesn’t give the product sufficient credit for a material that has emerged with an adventurous, technological advantage. Industrial improvements and laser treatments in eyewear and specialised, handcrafted innovations, bring newfound elegance and diversification to visual perceptions. Titanium, stainless steel, aluminium, and precious metals like gold and sterling silver, enable eyewear designers to create amazing variants in frames. Danish brand LINDBERG is a specialist in beautiful metal designs, and Max (above) from the Air Titanium Rim Collection includes this sophisticated, streamlined frame for men. www.lindberg.com

Hapton by Mehran Baghie for Spectacle Eyeworks
Hapton by Mehran Baghie for Spectacle Eyeworks

Another superlative style for men is Mehran Baghie’s Hapton, a strong angular shape that signifies the angles of the face. The frame colour is inspired by the tones of the Maple Leaf through its life span. www.spec-eyeworks.com

Olly by l.a. Eyeworks
Olly by l.a. Eyeworks

Rousing red vibrates on l.a. Eyeworks Olly – crafted in Japan from surgical stainless steel. The thin purple pinstripe surrounding the lens is finely honed with a separate milled insert. Dashing! www.laeyeworks.com

Style 9167 by Carter Bond
Style 9167 by Carter Bond

Carter Bond celebrates metal with style 9167 – superbly crafted with a gold mirror front and nosepiece – a cool retro look – with tortoiseshell sides. www.carterbond.com

Saint Martin by Blackfin
Saint Martin by Blackfin

A special effect technique – which can either be optical or mechanical – reflects a bas-relief pattern carved by photoengraving titanium, and incorporates a luxury woven effect to Blackfin’s model Saint Martin. The sunglasses from the Italian label also highlight a smart double bridge, ample curved lines, and is particularly stunning in blue. www.blackfin.eu JG



Flying high with speed and style

This year marks the centennial of a unique and historic event that unified hope, courage and passion – and a strengthened, shared commitment. In 1916, the United States had not yet officially entered World War I. Hence, a group of young American pilots wanted to show their allegiance and unity with the French, in defence of their respected values and spirit – that both countries held dear.

A squadron consisting entirely of American volunteers was organised to lend support to the French Army. The La Fayette squadron debuted in 1916, named after the Marquis de La Fayette, a French hero of the US War of Independence. La Lafayette was a prominent and heroic symbol of friendship between the two countries. The squadron’s insignia was the head of a Sioux Indian Chief, unifying strength and courage. The unit fought in every battle of the war, and notably the battle of Verdun. When the US entered the war, the pilots from the La Fayette Squadron were incorporated into the US Army, and served as the first fighter pilots of America that eventually became the US Air Force. By the end of the war, 267 American pilots had served in the La Fayette Flying Group…and the rest is history!

Collaborative venture: Lafont's frame tribute to the La Fayette Squadron
Collaborative venture: Lafont’s frame tribute to the La Fayette Squadron

Fast forward to 2016, and to mark the occasion, Lafont Paris has created a commemorative Limited Edition sunglass design in collaboration with the French Air Force. Matthieu Lafont, who loves planes, commented what an honour it was to work on this exclusive, joint venture, and a thrill to visit the air base. The rich history of the squadron, along with the devotion and dedication of the pilots were all strong stimulus and inspirations for Lafont in creating these respected frames. To celebrate the milestone, a centennial logo was created based on the initial logo that represented the squadron in WWI, and is prominently used on a Mirage 200N, the aircraft currently used by the La Fayette Squadron.

Socrate La Fayette by Lafont Paris, handcrafted in France
Socrate La Fayette by Lafont Paris, handcrafted in France

In the design process, the Lafont Studio took into consideration the special needs of the pilots who sought an ergonomic sunglass suitable for daily use. The result recognises and pays tribute to the squadron’s insignia and traditions, featuring the Sioux head laser engraved on the lenses. A super sonic winner! www.lafont.com Please note: Model Socrate is available in the Lafont collection, but without the collector colours and décor. JG

Tavat Soupcan Round 2.0

With its ravishing round shape and vintage echoes, Round 2.0 from the Tavat Soupcan collection is a harmonious mix of style and technology. Alpacca – a copper alloy – unites with printed acetate on the eye rims and temples. Crafted in Italy, Round 2.0 excels in fabulous fundamentals, superior performance, and customised individuality. More on Soupcan styles from Tavat at www.tavat-eyewear.com JG

Eye Boutique, Dubai Mall

Dubai’s impressive luxury eyewear store – EYE BOUTIQUE – is a haven for the eyewear enthusiast, offering a mix of some of the world’s greatest luxury design labels and experimental designs, an exceptional and comprehensive vision care service, and a staggeringly impressive choice of vintage frames.

Part of the historical Hassan’s Optician Company in Kuwait, the first optician store officially approved by the Kuwaiti Department of Health in 1960, the innovative world-class EYE BOUTIQUE was founded by Sanaz Saadat, the wife of Dr Kian Saadat, the son of the founder and current CEO of Hassan’s Optician Co., Dr Hassan Saadat Yazdi.

The success of the EYE BOUTIQUE in Kuwait and Dubai is such that expansion plans are underway to open two additional stores in the UAE.

Eye Boutique, Kuwait store
Eye Boutique, Kuwait store
Unique design from ic! berlin
Unique “collectible” design from ic! berlin

Today, the boutique in the Dubai Mall which EYESTYLIST visited in October 2016, has a comprehensive selection of luxury and experimental frames. They include some of the finest designs by leading innovators Anna-Karin Karlsson, LGR, Linda Farrow, Gentle Monster, Oliver Goldsmith and LINDBERG, as well as ic! berlin – some of their rare pieces such as Splash! dating back to 2012 and their more recent collectible “glasses display” (pictured above).

Luxury Limited Editions and vintage eyewear at Eye Boutique
Luxury Limited Editions and vintage eyewear at Eye Boutique

The vintage collection is unprecedented and comes from Hassan’s Kuwait archives. Key early pieces from brands like Persol are available, as are labels such as the Italian classic Casanova by TAXI, Paloma Picasso, DIOR and Cazal.

Dubai Mall, Ground Level, Dubai and 360 Shopping Mall, Sixth Ring Road, Kuwait. New stores coming soon! For more details visit www.eyeboutiqueme.com CN


FLEYE: Inspirational, imaginative, iconic!

FLEYE has launched their stunning new campaign for 2016/2017 that celebrates the Danish label with pure aesthetics and timeless simplicity. The extraordinary natural beauty of the La Muralla Roja location – which means “The Red Wall” – not only captures Nature’s ageless landscape – but clearly captivates the new designs and artistic direction of FLEYE’s imaginative collection. Photographer Silvia Conde embraces the amazing lighting and moods of La Muralla Roja – rising from the rocky cliffs of Calpe, nestled in the Alicante region of Spain. This tranquil setting is the ideal canvas to introduce FLEYE’s elegant frame silhouettes that effectively combine a triad of nature, inspiration and creative design.

In the top image (left to right) the Dorius frame unites a unique material mix of carbon and wood in a stylish creation with a distinctive appearance. Kani reinvents the aviator with a chic brow bar in high-density acetate for a slim, lightweight and minimalistic look. A frame with immense character is Emmet, constructed with 23 layers of paper-thin carbon fibre and a slim wood layer. With timeless sophistication and an edgy note, the angular shape of Arden is a trio of beta-titanium, carbon fibre and wood.

Dicte from the FLEYE collection
Dicte from the FLEYE collection

Dicte is a luxuriously crafted beta-titanium design for women in smooth matt black, and a special touch with green marble acetate end-tips, plus a slightly curved top that accentuates the eyebrows. FLEYE designs are adventurous, innovative, ultra-light, comfortable, well-fitted and graciously refined. More beautiful discoveries at www.fleye.dk JG

Style 609 Pollipo’

Paola Costantini’s Roman heritage underlies her achievement for exquisite craftsmanship, and embodiment of expressive colours. Her latest designs include elegant style 609 in brushed beige cubanite – with colour and texture midway between leather and fabric, played on neutral tones. The contemporary cat eye silhouette highlights the sophistication and refinement of the design. Natural Tuscan leather in brilliant orange with a saffiano finish is the ideal way to store and protect your glasses. Discover more of Polippo’s chic eyewear at www.pollipocchiali.it JG

New innovators: Falvin Eyewear

Intriguing design by a former jewellery designer, Birgitte Falvin’s new collection for 2017 is presented in exceptional imagery with Danish model Anna Edelfors.

The campaign includes the new Skycrystal Shades (part of the Black Crystal Collection for 2017) in lightweight titanium, a bold, luxurious concept that highlights the designer’s ingenious approach to eyewear. The beautiful, minimal titanium frame, pictured (below) with an elegant architectural shape, typical of Birgitte’s unique style, is complemented by lenses which add to the overall aesthetic: clever facet-cut details along the top edge, and, in some designs, cut-outs in the lenses – precision cut using an old-fashioned artisan technique only achievable by hand. The matte black surface is complemented by exquisite detailing in 24-carat gold.

Falvin Eyewear, Denmark
Falvin Eyewear, Denmark

Falvin Eyewear’s choice of luxury materials – including Japanese titanium, diamonds, 24 carat gold and platinum – is very carefully approached. While comfort and ease of wear is well considered, the clean yet paired-back aesthetics and attention to detail are typical of a strong Danish design ethos which has an immediate draw for the wearer.

Skycrystal by Falvin Eyewear
Skycrystal by Falvin Eyewear, with facet-cut lenses

Colours are harmonious and natural, selected to work seamlessly with clothing and skin tones, for men and women. “The palette is inspired by colours meeting the surface of the Royal Black Diamond Library,” explains the designer, “when the sunlight plays on it, creating special effects.”

The Black Crystal Collection includes 10 different shapes, which can be customised with diamonds and/or sun lenses. A choice of surfaces in rose gold, palladium and 24 carat gold are proposed in combination with a colour palette of black, brown, grey, blue, aubergine, or white. The customised handcrafted diamond setting is made with black, champagne, and white/transparent Wesselton diamonds. For more information, visit www.falvineyewear.com CN

Luc Tuymans: Glasses…National Portrait Gallery

Art frequently influences eyewear, and frames can be an inspiration for art. Belgian artist Luc Tuymans paints a range of subject matter from major historical events to the everyday. His latest work is the phenomenon of spectacles as his muse. As he says:”I have always enjoyed painting glasses. glasses bring a kind of distortion to the face…it is a strange instrument and practically a universal theme. The banality of glasses receives a different meaning when you paint them. When at a certain point I was looking through all the portraits I’ve painted up to now, I was amazed to discover that there were glasses in three quarters of them. This is certainly not a conscious choice…glasses radically change the physiognomy of a face, but are not perceived as a radical change.” Top image: Portrait by Luc Tuymans, 2000; Private Collection; Courtesy David Zwirner, New York/London

Portrait Old Man by Luc Tuymans, 2000; Private Collection Antwerp
Portrait Old Man by Luc Tuymans, 2000; Private Collection Antwerp

A larger exhibition of Tuymans work is concurrently on view at the Museum aan de Stroom in Antwerp. The artist is widely regarded as one of the most significant and influential contemporary painters working today. His work deals with how history and memory is translated into paint, and how we perceive people and things. The exhibition continues through 2 April 2017. www.npg.org.uk JG

Orbis + Zoobug bring help & hope to little girl

A heart warming collaboration between Orbis – the worldwide sight saving programme – and ZOOBUG children’s eyewear – has brought sight and hope to a little girl in China. Xiu Ling, who is nine years old, was diagnosed at He University Eye Hospital with the rare condition Double Levator Palsy. The treatment took place on board Orbis’ new Flying Eye Hospital. The Orbis programme includes post-operative assessment, and Xiu was presented with ZOOBUG sunglasses to ensure correct protection and comfort for her eyes following treatment. Photo: Xiu Ling wearing her ZOOBUG sunglasses.

Xiu Ling on the Flying Eye Hospital
Xiu Ling on the Flying Eye Hospital

“ZOOBUG has been donating glasses and sunglasses to Orbis since 2014,” says Dr Julie Diem Le, ZOOBUG Director and an eye surgeon, “and we are always grateful to know that our glasses and sunglasses are reaching children who have undergone surgery, and need access to quality eyewear. In the first days and months after an operation, it is essential that their eyes are properly cared for and protected as they recover.”

Xiu Ling descending the FlyingEye Hospital with her mother and Orbis staff member
Xiu Ling descending the Flying Eye Hospital with her mother and Orbis staff member.

Dr Le continued: “Orbis and their work via the Flying Eye Hospital offers a remarkable opportunity to transform children’s lives in the treatment and prevention of eye disease and avoidable blindness. We are committed to that cause in our endeavours to raise awareness of the importance of children’s eye health.” Award winning ZOOBUG optical and sunglass designs are crafted from fine quality materials and customised elements, to insure perfect fit and comfort for youngsters. www.zoobug.com JG



SALT. + Briefing

The ideal solution to keep your spectacles safe for outdoor adventures is a chic, multi-functional case featuring SALT. + Briefing. The California eyewear brand has collaborated with the Japanese luggage company Briefing, and both companies design their innovative products to be strong, study and stylish. The SALT. frames featured with the case are Fairwind – which means “safe journey and good fortune”, crafted in acetate with CR39 flash mirror lenses that are 100% scratch resistant. The practical, multi-use case – which can also carry your mobile phone – is made from Ballistic nylon and YKK zippers for durability and strength. The ideal accessory – and holiday gift – for happy outdoor adventures! www.saltoptics.com JG

DIS DONC by Boz Eyewear

The curiously named Dis Donc (a French expression which, quite aptly,  translates roughly “wow” “hey” or goodness”!)  comes for the bold and creative French label, BOZ. Spring-like in mood, its graceful shape highlights the trend for designs with an “open” framework – something quite different that plays with a mix of shapes, here, the round lens with the dynamic structure of a cats eye. On the face, the contrasts in colour, shape and material thickness are delicate and feminine, with a charismatic elegance that highlights the eyes, without overpowering them. Find more creative BOZ designs at www.boz-eyewear.fr CN

New and novel

The latest collections reveal that designer’s creativity is flourishing, as eyewear styles reach new heights of beauty, craftsmanship, and innovation. Superb materials in unique colourations, and unexpected details add to the charm of expressive eyewear. Elegant new designs from FLEYE in Denmark include Dorius in Indigo Blue (above) with its contemporary shape and excellent fit. Wood, raw carbon fibre (23 paper thin layers) and beta-titanium combine to create this sleek, chic frame. Discover more Scandinavian eyewear flair at www.fleye.dk Photo: Silvia Conde

Gemini in handcrafted horn by MONOCEROS
Gemini in handcrafted horn by MONOCEROS

Making a debut this season is a stunning new collection – MONOCEROS. Gemini is handcrafted from a single piece of eco-friendly buffalo horn. The material is very light, warm and pleasing to the skin. Refined and timeless, and a new dimension in horn excellence. www.monoceros.cc

Luxurious style: The Claw and The Pearl by Anna-Karin Karlsson
Luxurious style: The Claw and The Pearl by Anna-Karin Karlsson

Anna-Karin Karlsson’s romantic and sophisticated The Claw and The Pearl sunglasses unites metal plated in 24K white gold – with beautiful Tahitian black pearls.  Visit www.annakarinkarlsson.com for more exciting, innovative eyewear from the Swedish designer’s latest collection.

Contemporary chic, vintage heritage: Lucio by Oliviero Zanon at Res/Rei
Contemporary chic, vintage heritage: Lucio by Oliviero Zanon at Res/Rei

Vintage acetate highlights Oliviero Zanon’s Lucio sunglasses with a chic round shape. The Res/Rei design is superbly handcrafted in Italy in black, white and crystal. Explore more Res/Rei styles at www.resrei.com

New additions to Kirk & Kirk's animal kingdom: Alligator handcrafted pin on Vivarium frames
New additions to Kirk & Kirk’s animal kingdom: Alligator handcrafted pin on Vivarium frames

The alluring Vivarium range from Kirk & Kirk introduces two new members to their animal kingdom motifs – the alligator (above) and the cobra. The distinctive pins that adorn the acrylic designs are handmade in England. See more of Kirk & Kirk’s colourful eyewear selections at www.kirkandkirk.com JG

Dubai, for eyewear!

Dubai’s warmth and year-round sunshine provide the ideal setting for an optical fair serving the Middle East and Africa, which attracts around 4000 buyers from 70 countries each year. The show takes place at Dubai’s prestigious World Trade Centre, the UAE’s leading event venue.

The Vision-X fair in October this year (the 17th edition) attracted big-name brands and a handful of independent eyewear exhibitors including Ross & Brown (stocked by Harvey Nichols – http://www.harveynichols.com/brand/ross—brown/), Tomato Glasses for children, INVU, Swiss label Einstoffen and Parisian-based designer, Dzmitry Samal.

006 by Dzmitry Samal
006 by Dzmitry Samal – a highlight at Vision-X

The fair also hosts a German Pavilion annually with 11 exhibitors representing different optical categories including fashion frames. For further information visit www.vision-x.ae.

During the trip, Eyestylist also visited the impressive Dubai Mall – “the world’s largest mall by area”, where numerous optical stores include Magrabi (adult store plus a dedicated kids eyewear store), Occhiali, Solaris, Vista Vision and sports eyewear specialists, Optysport.

Anna-Karin Karlsson, one of the prestigious eyewear brands at The Eye Boutique, Dubai Mall
Anna-Karin Karlsson, one of the sought-after luxury eyewear brands at The Eye Boutique, Dubai Mall

The highlight of the trip was a visit to the exceptional Eye Boutique, directed by eyewear expert, Sanaz Saadat, and part of the historic Hassan’s Optical Company. The Eye Boutique – one of two stores in Dubai (two more will shortly open), offers an unrivalled mix of luxury, experimental and designer eyewear – including LGR, ic! berlin, Anna-Karin Karlsson and Dita and some of the most beautiful rare vintage frames we have seen, preserved from Hassan’s stocks from the past in Kuwait. For more information: www.eyeboutiqueme.com CN

Creative accessories: Valrose, Provence

Creative accessories for quality glasses and sunglasses are not always easy to come by but the more specialised designs are increasingly featuring in high end optical boutiques where customers value creative products that complement spectacles and keep them safe and easy to find. When we have reviewed the finer examples, there has been a prevailing trend for the use of elegant materials and a design direction in tune with jewellery trends that sets the independent makers apart.

The French label Valrose, based in Saint-Didier, Provence, is one of those labels and one of the most established. The company launched their first collections in 1993, and today produce many styles and designs that offer a practical use with a stylish finish.

Acetate chain by Valrose. Made in France.
Acetate chain by Valrose
Glasses cases by Valrose
Glasses cases by Valrose

For those with a sensibility for good design, their collections will be appreciated. Natural materials, fabrics such as linen, acetate and 100% wool felt are important features in the line, and bright colours and trims set a chic Mediterranean mood. Chains in acetate are made by hand in France, designed as pendants to match one’s style or mood. Also on offer are a nice choice of soft and semi-hard cases, cords in leather and cotton, and pretty decorative chains with gemstones and tropical-style beads, styled as jewellery pieces with unique colour combinations and real individuality and flair. For further details about Valrose accessories visit www.valrose.net CN

theo+Tim Van Steenbergen: Pictures at an Exhibition

Numerous and varied inspirations influence designers, and for Tim Van Steenbergen (above) his muses include music, opera and ballet. He has created costumes for Richard Wagner’s The Ring; La Scala in Milan; and the Staatsoper in Berlin, and now the Ballet Viaanderen. His latest foray is a personal interpretation of Limited Edition sunglasses based on the ballet masterpiece of Maurice Ravel –Pictures at an Exhibition. The composition is by Modest Mussorgsky, in an orchestration by Ravel, and is part of a triple bill performed by Ballet Viaanderen in Belgium.

Van Steenbergen shared with Eyestylist some of the background events for the Limited Edition glasses. “The idea was one big creative process,” said Van Steenbergen,”as when I started this project with Ballet Viaanderen, I wasn’t thinking about creating new frames. However, I discussed this with some colleagues, and realised the stage is dominated by five golden frames, and the story of a world in front of and behind the frames: to watch while being watched.

theo+Tim Van Steenbergen Limited Edition in black & gold - Pictures at an Exhibition
theo+Tim Van Steenbergen Limited Edition in black & gold – Pictures at an Exhibition

“That reminded me of frames. People are looking at you through the frame, and you look back at them. And just at that moment, theo asked me about creating a special Limited Edition! The main thing about the frames is ‘being watched.’¨ That’s why I chose the golden aspect – and it also refers to the golden frames onstage, which the dancers move through. With the golden mirrored lenses people look at you; but you don’t show them everything.”

The dance idiom in the ballet is tranquil and fluid, and translated into eyewear – this means bold forms in black, highlighted with golden edges in 24-carat gold. The reflective gold lenses are a reference to the interaction with the artist – or in this instance – the wearer. Six elegant models are available, wrapped in a cleaning cloth with a pattern from the costumes designed by Van Steenbergen for Pictures at an Exhibition, and stylishly packaged in a protective hard case. www.theo.be JG


Congratulations! Götti wins German Design Award 2017

Streamlined, cutting edge design and innovative functionality are essential to eyewear by Sven Götti (above). The internationally recognised Swiss brand has been named winner of the renowned German Design Award 2017 in the Lifestyle and Fashion category for the elegant sunglass design – Tamal. The frame is among the Spin & Stow 360° collection, that features patented rotating temples, enabling the frames to fold flat, so the glasses can be carried easily.

TAMAL - winner of the German Design Award 2017 for "Lifestyle and Fashion."
TAMAL – winner of the German Design Award 2017 for “Lifestyle and Fashion.”

The German Design Award has been recognising extraordinary design for over sixty years. Only projects that uniquely represent international design innovations and pioneering creativity are given this revered and respected tribute. The prize will be awarded in February 2017 at a gala event in Frankfurt. Congratulations Sven and the Götti team from Eyestylist! www.gotti.ch JG


Stuttgart shines! – Die Brillenmesse

Opticians from Stuttgart and surrounding regions visited the recent Die Brillenmesse event, and eagerly viewed the diverse, independent eyewear collections on display. Creativity, individuality, and sleek design captivated enthusiastic visitors attending the show. Co-organiser Nathanael Wenger commented: “The Hall of Legends at Motorworld was again a perfect location for the 4th edition of Die Brillenmesse in Stuttgart. About sixty brands presented the autumn news. The spectrum from Adrian Marwitz to Zen Barcelona was enormous, and reflected many styles and new concepts.

“We were pleased with the show in Stuttgart this year; over 140 shops visited the event in two days – a few less than last year. The good weather during the weekend, and the closure of one important highway were reasons why fewer opticians visited. Nevertheless, the format of this small and elegant show is very well established in the south of Germany.”


Patrik Jakobsen and Rainer Pawollek present the new Orgreen collection at Die Brillenmesse Stuttgart
Patrik Jakobsen and Rainer Pawollek present the new Orgreen collection at Die Brillenmesse Stuttgart

From the fashion perspective, co-organiser Dirk Geissmann added: “Fine rimmed metal frames are more and more visible in several collections. Andy Wolf even launched a rimless line! 3D frames in combination with a face scanner are the next big thing. You Mawo from Munich seems to be ahead in the race. Frames crafted in natural materials are still hot, especially if they are fine rimmed like Feb 31st. The Italian brand offers the lightest wood frames with 2mm thickness. Kaleos is a new fresh brand from Barcelona.

Silmo d'Or nominee Von Arkel from Switzerland display their elegant frames
Silmo d’Or nominee Von Arkel from Switzerland display their elegant frames

Geissmann continued: “A new addition to Die Brillenmesse this year was the Think Tank Seminars that brought impact – and visitors – to the show. With Think Tank we want to discuss relevant issues for our market. This includes digital change, new technologies, the process of designing glasses, and more. There are many changes in our industry, and it is important that independent opticians are ready for the future. We had more visitors for the new platform in Zurich – and we will make sure that German opticians hear about Think Tank.”

New chic designs by Martin & Martin in Germany
New chic designs by Martin & Martin in Germany

Wenger concluded: “The dates for 2017 are now established. The next stop for us is Cologne on 6-7 May 2017. We are really looking forward to this show. It will be the third time in the Rhine-Ruhr region of Germany, and we think we will have a breakthrough. Zurich is 15-16 October 2017, and Stuttgart on 28-29 October 2017. We moved both shows back because of the late date of SILMO next year. For us it is crucial that brands can show the autumn news.” www.diebrillenmesse.de JG

Top image left to right: Co-organiser Nathanael Wenger; designer Stefan Flegl Wood & Cotton; designer Adrian Marwitz Adrian Marwitz Eyewear; designer Didier Voirol Metal Art Concept; co-organiser Dirk Geissmann

Photos: All images for Eyestylist by Bruno Kickner – all rights reserved www.kickner.de