Luca Gnecci Ruscone has opened a second L.G.R store in Rome, the city he grew up in and home to his sunglasses and eyewear company. Like L.G.R in Milan, the chic individual design takes inspiration from the atmosphere of Ottica Bini, the store which Luca’s grandfather, Raffaello Bini, ran in Asmara (Eritrea, Africa) between the 1930s and the 70s. It was in that store, in 2005, that Luca discovered some old and elegant frames dating back to the 40s. He then decided to take them to Italy to embark on a new business venture.
This combination of Italy and Africa, which represents the brand DNA, is part of every detail of the store. Wooden furniture and coconut elements have been carefully and elegantly manufactured by Italian craftsmen, while the fabrics and the chandelier designed by L.G.R have been made in Morocco. The wooden display niches in Venetian Neo-Gothic style have been inspired by the windows of the old Ottica Bini as has the colour palette of sand, green and turquoise. On the walls, the evocative illustrations by Giampiero Celani Piendlbach embellish the environment.
“After Milan, opening a store in Rome was my priority, not only for commercial purposes, but also for personal reasons. I grew up in Rome, it is my home, this is where our company has its headquarters. We are determined to grow and in the future we plan to open other monobrand stores in Italy – Florence may be the next one – and abroad.” says Luca Gnecchi Ruscone, Founder and CEO of the brand.
The new store presents the 2019 collection of sunglasses and eyewear, with L.G.R highlights such as Reunion and Asmara (Explorer line) and the new exclusive limited edition, RAW #2. L.G.R., Via della Fontanella di Borghese, Rome www.lgrworld.com CN
Designer Lara d’Alpaos started her career in architecture in Northern Italy. Today, following family tradition, she produces artisan eyewear in acetate, stainless steel and beta titanium using the traditional craftsmanship and expertise of local artisans in Belluno, Italy. With a focus on pure glamour, the Diamond collection – a new craft oriented luxury line – puts emphasis on architectural structures within her design repertoire, adding a rich, sparkling effect through the application of a diamond powder coating on the front of the frames. Model Luna, a round design inspired by the curves of the moon (the name Luna meaning “moon” in Italian), is one of three shapes with double rims on the upper fronts and the dazzling luxury shimmer effect – which produces a light, feminine finish to what are sophisticated statement designs. For more information on stockists, visit www.laradeyewear.comCN
Sculptural pieces such as those in the Bocca collection are rare and intriguing. The frame named Bocca 20s1 is part of the 2019 collection by Creative Director Pascal Jaulent, a line that is delicate, colourful and always whimsical, with temples wearing miniature shoes of many cute varieties.
“Sometimes a detail is nearly invisible when transparent, while other times it is highlighted when colourful,” explains Jaulent of the seductive, eye-catchin styling direction. “The manner in which light and colour intertwine is truly captivating.”
The 20s1 model is one of the styles in the range inspired – in every precise detail – by the Art Deco movement. A thin highlighted line is visible over the brow, echoed in the coloration of the sculpted ‘shoes’ at the temple ends. For more Bocca styles, in acetate and metal, visit www.faceaface-paris.comCN
With the launch of two more far-from-ordinary retro inspired sunglasses, Ørgreen Optics’ Quantum collection continues to lead us down a path of advanced fashion styling, only achievable with the solid commitment in R&D and qualitative focus of one of the leading innovator teams in modern eyewear.
Models Marsala and Amalfi from the Down South series are named after the popular holiday destinations stretching along the coast of the Campania region in Italy and the Sicilian province of Trapani. Their classically inspired shapes are highlighted by an ultra-cool bas relief patterning created through the high-tech 3d printing technology, while the feeling on the face is of lightness, comfort, and ease of wear.
Quantum’s impact, since its launch in 2017, has been significant at the cutting-edge of the roster of 3d printed collections – particularly in the technically focused combination of titanium with Polyamide, and its patented hinge design using a minute spherical component which connects the titanium temple to the polyamide front. The frames are available at selected opticians and in Copenhagen at the brand’s flagship store. For more details about Ørgreen Optics, visit www.orgreenoptics.comCN
In time for summer – l.a. Eyeworks has launched FICTION Sun – stunning prescription sunglasses from the California label. Now FICTION designs are available in both optical (Eyestylist.com 25th April 2019) and sun options. Whether your preferred summer activities include parks and picnics, or sand and sailing, the contemporary styling of the new FICTION Sun styles adds fashion flair and exciting charisma. Timeless yet trendy, cat-eye frames transcend the decades. Dress (above) in Blue Wiggle is a jaunty frame with gentle contours, and relaxed comfort.
Acetate and metal unite in Wake, with a curved double bridge in metal, and acetate frame front. The finely crafted frames merge the latest technology, with precise details, and sophisticated colours.
Among the contemporary designs in the capsule collection of eight different frames is the desirable NOTCH, in Tokyo Tortoise. Tortoise is an enduring colouration in eyewear, and the creative colour play in Notch, with a metal double bridge and retro hints, ensure a frame with self-confidence and expression. Visit www.fictionframes.com to see more FICTION styles, and the label’s diverse variety of innovative frames. JG
The post-war years are frequently referenced in fashion and eyewear – the 1950’s in particular was the era of the wasp waist, the emergence of stylish casual attire, and cat-eye spectacles. Götti Switzerland introduces a modern-day allusion to the cat-eye with Maya, designed with a feminine silhouette in warm, translucent acetate, and matte-gold stainless steel temples. The frames are extremely lightweight, very comfortable on the face, and a pleasure to wear. Hand polishing provides a radiant, glowing finish. Maya is shown in glossy violet, and lovely tones of olive and brown are also available. Discover more Götti innovations at www.gotti.chJG
The two year old Kensington optical boutique The Eye Establishment continues to lead the way in bringing fine eyewear collections to their local community – with an astutely curated selection of brands from around the globe – and the best optical parties in town. Located in a busy street near Earl’s Court, the shop itself stocks frames by L.G.R, Garrett Leight, Celine, DITA and Japanese label Eyevan 7285, among others. They have a beautiful selection of chains by Frame Chain, the trendsetting British accessories brand who have turned the eyewear chain into a must-have fashion staple. Photography by Cesare Riccardi for Eyestylist.com. All rights reserved.
Last week’s party brought together guests and regular customers for a full showing of the Garrett Leight Collection (GLCO) for Spring/Summer. The LA-based brand has sparked particular attention this season thanks to appearances by Leonardo DiCaprio and Brad Pitt at Cannes in their sunnies (Beach Sun and Calabar Sun) for the premiere of Quentin Tarantino’s Once Upon a Time…In Hollywood.
Unisex designs with a square shape and graduated lenses, cat eye silhouettes and quirky multi-sided shapes like the Jacqueline Sun (pictured above) were a big hit with guests. The crystal acetate sunnies are also doing well for the summer, particularly when paired with colorful lens tones of pink, blue or berry. Vintage touches lend a touch of old-school design, which everyone seems to love, with features like a defined keyhole bridge adding style and a comfortable fit.
The Eye Est. is run by Nadeem Rob and his wife, Fahmida Kamal. For more details about testing at the Eye Est. and to purchase frames online visit: www.eye-est.com. California party design exclusively for The Eye Est. by the Event Builders @theeventbuilders. Eyestylist.com thanks the Eye Est. for a warm welcome at their summer event.CN
Combining historical charm with a twist of new ‘pink’, model Audrey (above) by Oliver Goldsmith is the ultimate summer accessory. Crafted in an acetate material of the highest order the frame’s bold oval eye shape and thick rim are combined with the subtlest of lens tints with the ultimate UV protection (by Zeiss).
Originally, model Audrey (1963) was named after and designed for Hollywood superstar, Audrey Hepburn; Oliver Goldsmith designed frames for many of her movies such as ‘Charade’ and ‘How to Steal a Million’. For OG, Audrey is one of the pioneering “trendsetting” frames which helped spread the popularity of the statement oval sunglass shape, a classic look with everlasting appeal.
The two beautiful new summer colourways – Black Tortoiseshell and Pink Tortoiseshell (pictured above), have been released for some of the most popular styles in the collection, which also include The Manhattan and Sophia styles. For more details and for the online shop visit www.olivergoldsmith.comCN
Generous linear proportions, delicious colours and luxuriously sculpted, Finest Seven proposes glamorous sunglasses for summer adventures. Designed by New Zealand couple Ainjali and Jesse Fine, the frames are crafted in beautiful materials with dedication to exquisite details. For the latest campaign Ainjali commented: “We wanted a high summer shoot with lots of colour.” The frame silhouettes in Finest Seven designs are exquisitely formed with distinctive variations on contemporary shapes. In the above photo, the male model wears Zero 13 with blue gradient lenses. Colour variations of the lenses are beautifully expressed in Zero 14 with Tequila Sunrise lens, worn by the female model.
Sunglasses are a powerful – as well as a protective – accessory. Travel escapades enable people to follow the sun, and captivating sun specs are the ultimate fashion accessory. Ainjali and Jesse appreciate vintage eyewear, and Zero 16 (above) highlights this with a gentle cat-eye in a superbly slim, yet voluminous shape. Tequila Sunrise lenses give instant charm and charisma to summer fashions.
Finest Seven designs pursue romantic, mysterious, and contemporary concepts. Graphic streamlining in Zero 15, is complimented by a thin double bridge. Baby Pink Mirror lenses embolden the sunglasses with characteristic Finest Seven style. Discover more unconventional shapes, colours and dramatic details from the collection at www.finestseven.comJG Photos by Elisa Teichtmeister All Rights Reserved
A very dear friend in Rochester, New York keeps an “eye” on what might be intriguing in eyewear. He alerted Eyestylist to this forward thinking, fashion savvy boutique in the American city that is closely associated with the industrial, cultural, and philanthropic endeavours of George Eastman, the Kodak founder. Tamra Asmuth (above image) is creating her own legacy in the Northern New York State city, nestled on Lake Ontario, with a distinctively elegant boutique – One Hip Chic Optical. Nowadays, customers are looking for something “different” – an experience that is personal, with speciality items, and excellent service. Asmuth delivers: with beautiful eyewear from artisan creators, and handmade shoes.
Everything about One Hip Chic Optical is individual, with custom furniture, complimenting her unique taste in eyewear. Several years go, Asmuth moved to the present location on Monroe Avenue, and spent six months overseeing the renovations. She describes the techniques she utilised in creating the boutique. “A large wall covered with custom-made wallpaper welcomes each visitor to One Hip Chic Optical. Underfoot, a plywood floor cut in a mosaic pattern is a continuously changing art piece as layers of paint colours and textures are added. One of the first things I did in this house – built in the 1930’s – was to commission a local fine furniture maker to craft sets of drawers made of quality cherry wood. The drawers, each lined with handmade paper, contain the frame inventory. I take orders at a custom-made stainless steel desk, and dispense glasses at a glass desk. People can relax on a soft, pink velour couch. Since day one, every choice made at One Hip Chic Optical has been with the creative person in mind. Each detail is meant to appeal to the senses.”
Independent labels are the highlight at One Hip Chic Optical. “I’ve long been a fan of theo and Anne & Valentin,” said Asmuth,” and have recently fallen in love with styles from Blake Kuwahara. I also carry Colibris, the German label for small faces. And I happily discovered Metronome from Japan. I am continuously looking for a new and unique “voice” in eyewear.”
With Asmuth’s fashion sense it was only a matter of time before her optical business evolved into another realm. “My customers often consult me about various style choices. I was recently asked to help design a dress for a formal event for one of my customers. Last week, another customer asked for hair colour advice. Based on this fashion aspect, opening a complimentary business to One Hip Chic Optical felt right.
Asmuth continued: “Immediately following the renovation project of the new location, Sole by One Hip Chic was born. The second floor of the business location houses handmade shoes from around the world. The shoe business is very different from the optical business. The seasonality of shoes and the variety of sizes offer a challenge the optical business doesn’t have, but it’s a challenge I welcome.” Asmuth’s vivacity, enthusiasm and style statements bring exciting new dimensions to the expanding possibilities for eyewear boutiques. www.onehipchic.comJG
Craftsmanship, creativity, and fine design are the benchmarks for independent eyewear designers exhibiting at Hall of Frames Zurich in September. Organiser Nathanaël Wenger said: “The show has made a name for itself as a meeting point for independent opticians and eyewear designers.”
“For the first time,” continued Wenger, “the event will take place in September – Sunday 15th and Monday 16th. Our location remains the same – the historical Papiersaal in Sihlcity in the centre of Zurich. Many of the exhibitors are among the pioneers who have shaped the eyewear market over the years.”
Wenger noted that diverse collections to be seen at the event include designers and brands with selections in acetate, metal, stainless steel, wood and horn, plus 3D technology that have set new standards for alluring eyewear.
Among the participants are Blackfin from Italy (top image) Swiss labels Götti; Von Arkel; Nirvan Javan; Baselli and Fassungswerk; Orgreen from Copenhagen; German brands Dusseldorf; You Mawo and Matze Marpe; Rolf Spectacles from The Tyrol in Austria and Andy Wolf; Randolph Engineering from USA; among other exciting labels.
Demand for high quality, innovative eyewear remains strong. “In general, the mood among independent specialist opticians is good,” said Wenger. This optimistic attitude is a reflection of the distinctive, desirable eyewear designs beautifully crafted from international creators. Save the dates! 15th and 16th September, Hall of Frames Zurich at Papiersaal. Additional details at www.hallofframes.chJG
Eyewear material inspires limited edition furnishings for the home
A new exhibition by Italian designer Giovanni Botticelli explores a classic Italian eyewear material by the well-known company Mazzucchelli in the design of objects for the home.
By revisiting a material he knows well, cellulose acetate, the designer combines concepts, design, and formal purity with focus on welding and bending techniques. He mixes two or more colours by joining acetate slabs through compressed acetone. Thermal bending is the technique commonly used for curved-front eyewear. The colour palette also draws on independent eyewear design, with chic clean contrasts between tan, transparent monochromes, and opaline hues.
The installation resulting from this in-depth investigation is presented as a scaled transposition of architecture’s typical expressions and forms, suggesting correspondences between essential style codes and pure geometric shapes. Displayed in the gallery are wall bookcases, tables, and boxes — furnishings conceived as places where memories dwell, places meant to safeguard the precious memory of our things.
In Botticelli’s collection, the absolute precision of design meets experimentation to raise the material’s creative potential. The HABITAT collection was designed exclusively for SWING Design Gallery and produced in a limited and numbered edition.
The design project is supported by Mazzucchelli 1849 (www.mazzucchelli1849.it), the historic company in Castiglione Olona founded in 1849 as a small factory for the production of horn and bone combs and buttons. It went on to become a world leader in the production and distribution of cellulose acetate.
About Giovanni Botticelli
Giovanni Botticelli was born in Rome in 1987. He studied Product Design at IED Rome (European Design Institute) from 2006 to 2009, focusing on eyewear design and the craft and industrial processing of ceramics, glass and sheet metal. He expanded his technical expertise through training at ENSA Limoges and Abate Zanetti Murano. Since 2009, he has worked with companies throughout Italy, designing and overseeing the production of eyewear and sunglasses for Mondelliani and other brands exhibiting at international fairs. In 2010, his design for the Oled lighting systems for PPML was chosen for the ADI Codex Lazio publication and won the competition put on by Alstom in collaboration with IED. After his thesis project, he developed products for DMG Spa’s collaborations with Schindler Group and Otis Elevator Company. In 2016, he took part in the Salone Satellite in Milan and started to work at IED as an assistant and teacher. For further details:www.swingdesigngallery.it / www.giovannibotticelli.euCN
The exhibition is open until 31 July 2019 in Benevento, Italy. Photography by Danilo Donzelli – www.danilodonzelli.com.
History plays a role in the latest designs in Collection 1880 by Morel. The concept is a reference to the year that the French label was launched – 1880. Designs for men and women reflect Morel’s continuing passion for beautiful eyewear. Homère 4 (above on the male model) is crafted with the frame front in HD acetate highlighting vintage contours, and metal sides. All Morel frames are artfully fabricated in the Jura region of France. The Homère 4 will be available in September. Women’s designs in Collection 1880 include Concept Tydée 6 – refined, sleek, and streamlined with a nod to the 1960’s. A lovely colour palette includes tints of anthracite and cognac; or crystalline tones of rose and white; plus shiny or matte black. Timeless designs, stylish colours, advanced materials and technology combine harmoniously in Morel’s sophisticated Collection 1880. Visit www.morel-france.com for more details. JG
Glamorous girls and glasses by Anna-Karin Karlsson sparkled at The Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival, celebrated in California. Rock, hiphop, indie, pop, electronic dance, continuous live music, sculptures and art – Coachella has it all. The showcase for musical artists is also a style show with photo-op outfits that often launch new trends. Fun, fashion and frolic highlighted the festival visit for Marie Rosell from the AKK Team and her friend Sofia Sandelius. “It was so much fun,” said Marie, and the girls looked ravishing in their luxurious sun specs by Anna-Karin Karlsson. Marie wears Half Moon (top image) in Japanese titanium plated with Rose Gold, and adorned with hand set crystals.
Anna-Karin’s elegant, sleek adaptation of the aviator shape is worn by Sonia (left above image) enhanced with a graceful butterfly at the nose bridge, and a linear brow bar, all crafted in Japanese titanium, with Carl Zeiss sun lenses. Visit www.annakarinkarlsson.com to see more captivating designs for cruising or city life, beaches or boulevards, and fun festivals! JG
Classic shapes are confirmed as the ultimate accessory for men this summer. Not only do these designs define an outfit and look good on most faces, their beautiful colorations, details and subtleties, particularly in the superior acetate materials, make a design statement in themselves.
Emerging label, Lunettes Alf has created one of the most easy-to-wear artisan collections of timeless designs, made in France and signed with a small red thread woven by hand into one temple tip as a reminder of each model’s provenance, quality and refined detailing.
Inspired by famous faces of the past, and a touch of the elegance of James Dean and the refined humour of Woody Allen, the e18.02.008 in crystal embodies an old-world 1940s charm with its half-ring profile and riveted hinges. For more details: https://lunettes-alf.com/collection/?lang=en#alf_2
Unisex model e18.04 – available in several classic colours of tortoise, black and crystal, is inspired by the soul and hip hop street culture of the 1980s and like the other highlighted models features the brand’s signature photochromic mineral glass sun lenses. More details: https://lunettes-alf.com/collection/?lang=en#alf_4
Eyestylist shot on location in Florence, Italy. Photography by Gennaro D’Elia (@genndel) exclusively for Eyestylist.com. Model: Alex Mancini (@mancini_alex). Sunglasses by Lunettes Alf. https://lunettes-alf.com CN
Free-spirited and adventurous, RIGARDS launches their latest exhilarating designs with bold, distinctive silhouettes. Designer Ti Kwa is fascinated with the work of H.R. Giger, the Swiss painter also acclaimed for his amazing special effects in the film Alien. The intrigue with Giger’s concepts led to Sentinel (above), moulded in natural horn with larger than life dimensions that ensure the frame is all the more imposing. Sensuous sculpting on the frame front adds to the dramatic, luxurious and impressive effect.
A favourite childhood film – Clash of the Titans – is the inspiration for RIGARDS striking design Nite Owl. The mechanical owl in the film – Bubo – influenced the stunning, painstakingly crafted frame in lightweight aluminium and magnesium. Deftly cast with a beak-like bridge, flowing sweeping curves, and ribbing details, Nite Owl fully expresses RIGARDS masterful accomplishment for powerful, unorthodox eyewear. Discover more avant-garde, splendid designs from the independent creator at www.rigards.comJG
Vinylize, the artisan label specialising in eyewear made from upcycled vinyl records, is offering a unique opportunity to make bespoke frames from your chosen LP. The finished models which are made to order are presented in custom designed coffers. The design above, recently shipped to Norway, was made from the client’s own album, Tungtvann. The shape of the classic Vinylize Brubeck model was customized for an ideal fit for the owner with an eye size enlarged from 55mm to 58mm. Progressive lenses were fitted into the vintage blue havana acetate lining the vinyl front by the company lab. Vinylize frames are chic, artisan products perfectly in tune with our growing ecological preoccupations. The collection is unique in that it is the only high-quality range to focus on vinyl products and has seen extraordinary success in Europe and further afield. For more information on the bespoke service visit www.vinylize.comCN
In England it’s been pouring, so Pitti was the place to be this week. Florence buzzes when the men’s collections show in June, and if our images offer an indication of what’s happening in men’s eyewear, then old-school updated seemed to be the most prevalent trend across the board, with the natural linen suits, wide brimmed or bucket hats and colorful summer shirts – some white, some gaudy, lining the entrance, inside and outside the fair grounds. Above: sunglasses trends: angular metal rims or round in thick acetate. Photography by Gennaro D’Elia exclusively for Eyestylist.com. All rights reserved.
Classic shades, and the shapes we’d expect… wayfarers, aviators, round shapes, and ovals (Francesco Monte wore small oval sunglasses in gunmetal with dark lenses) dominated the accessory line up, while a few slightly more extravagant or unusual vintage designs with colored tints or prominent key hole bridges attracted media attention.
Also popular are the beautifully finished tortoiseshell frames with clip-ons. In contrast, a few men sported oversized shields (Prada Sport or Oakley visor), which appear to be taking over from last year’s mini 1990s inspired Matrix sunglasses.
Pitti Uomo takes place in Florence, Italy twice a year (www.pittiimmagine.com). It is described as the world’s most important platform for men’s clothing and acessory collections and for launching new projects in men’s fashion. Eyewear brands exhibiting at the fair include Delirious (Italy), TBD Eyewear (Italy) and Percy Lau (Hong Kong). CN Photography by Gennaro D’Elia for Eyestylist.com. For more images at Pitti visit our Instagram page @eyestylistmagazine.
Travel is synonymous with eyewear creations from KBL. The spirit of discovery, exploring, and adventure permeates in every design. Proficient craftsmanship by Japanese artisans ensures that frames are meticulously produced with exceptional premium materials; distinctive original shapes; and colours with dramatic richness. Sun selections include dynamic and expressive frames that infuse KBL’s quest for streamlined, eloquent and refined designs.
Experimenting with Havana variations, Alex (top image) is shown in Orange tones, and is also available in Green Horn, Crystal Clear and Champagne acetate. Photographed against Berlin’s prominent landmark – the tall, 365 metre TV Tower – built in this vibrant German city, is a reflection of KBL’s attitude and spirit to a modern, fresh, urban approach to eyewear – with exciting, innovative ideas.
Generous shaping in Kudamm reveals a glamorous design that combines acetate and titanium, with flattering graphic contours, exuding a sophisticated aura.
Immerse yourself in relaxing summer afternoons, wearing KBL’s amply shaped butterfly sunglasses – Love Parade. Crafted in Titanium and superbly lightweight, the frames are shown in Gold, and also available in Dark Gun and Rose Gold. KBL showcases a creative, diverse selection of sleek designs in both sunglass and optical versions. Visit www.kbleyewear.com for additional discoveries. JG
Children’s sensitive, vulnerable eyes require special protection in particular with summer sunshine. Lafont Paris features stylish and protective sunglasses for the young set with quality UV lenses in uncluttered shapes and festive, fun colours with plenty of kid cool. Equinoxe in vivid red sports decoratively printed sides. Fit, comfort and durability is indicative of – and complements all – of the Lafont children’s designs. Visit www.lafont.com and explore the variety of styles, shape and colour options in optical and sunglass designs. JG
The Barbados brand by Alicia Hartman, Peoples from Barbados joined sustainably sourced leather accessories label Far From Lost this weekend for a London Fashion Week event at the prestigious Sanderson hotel. The evening was co-hosted by Geoff K. Cooper and Chimere Cisse. Above: dinner guests / London Fashion Week Men’s (#LFWM).
Peoples from Barbados, created and designed by optical entrepreneur Alicia Hartman, was launched in 2018. The brand is committed to producing high-quality designs (made in Japan) with unique patterns and colorations and exceptional technical details that ensure a longer lifetime. The sunglasses are available in leading fashion and optical stores in New York, London, Barbados and Jamaica.
Far from Lost sources the world’s finest remnant leather – before it is discarded – to create limited edition wallets by hand. Set up by Michael Menninger, the label’s luxurious, sustainable designs are made by Mark Hanks using traditional artisan leatherwork techniques. Far From Lost has its headquarters in San Francisco. For more information about both collections and to purchase directly from them online, visit www.peoplesfrombarbados.com / www.wearefarfromlost.comCN
Exquisite Swiss precision, luxurious materials, design sensuality and streamlined silhouettes are signature characteristics in Von Arkel’s eyewear creations. The latest designs are stunning collaborations of man and machine: uniting traditional spectacle skills with the most advanced technology. The following video elegantly illustrates the beauty, refinement, precision and perfection that infuses the Von Arkel spirit.
Sleek sun styles include statement Valencia (top image) the new Caliber 4 Outline frame that embraces lightness, special attention to every detail and meticulous polishing borrowed from the watchmaking industry. Simplicity and alignment is an art form at Von Arkel achieved in the masterfully crafted designs. The silver frame features silver temples with crystal end tips and polarised green lenses.
For women in the Calibre 4 Outline selection is the beautifully contoured Verona, smoothly polished with the essential hinge mechanism stripped down to its core. The superbly stylish silver frame features crystal rims, with polarised solar lens in grey and blue. Discover more distinguished designs from the acclaimed Swiss brand at www.vonarkel.comJG
Taking the eyewear accessory trend into a new era is the Japanese label Diffuser Tokyo, whose range of accessory products provide the perfect balance between style and functionality, and all the right qualities to pair with the finest eyewear and sunglasses on the market. The label has arrived in Europe at some of the most gorgeous optical shops already including Lunettes Selection (Berlin), KLAR (Darmstadt, Germany), Milan Lunetier (Paris) and Une histoire de lunettes (Montpellier), and it’s about to make its mark very quickly as a brand to watch.
The selection of designs by Diffuser includes soft fabric cases, leather cords, cords with silver engraved holders, novel ‘wearable’ eyewear cases and protective leather frame boxes. All the designs are made in Japan and make use of special high-quality materials with much variation including Italian leather, Japanese cow leather, suede, Japanese silk and metal parts in silver, brass or 18k/24k plating in precious metals such as rhodium.
Diffuser launched in 2012 as a fashion brand for men and has quickly expanded to produce unisex designs for men and women. Masaki Hirose, who had been working in eyewear sales in Japan, joined with a team of creatives and their products saw instant success at fashion retailers and leading department stores in Tokyo for the balance of quality design and price that has given them immediate immediate appeal for the design-driven eyewear enthusiast.
Diffuser Tokyo will be exhibiting for the first time at Silmo in September 2019. The fair takes place from 27th to 30th September. For full details on the collection visit www.diffuser-tokyo.comCN
NYC events, new stockists in Miami and a special tour of Jamaica. Just a few of the things that optician/designer Alicia Hartman has been busy with since we last caught up with her in April. And with that has come some glamorous new eyewear styles, as well as plenty of colourful sunnies.
We first met Alicia in 2018 (and before that we had been in touch via social media for some years). Now she is one of the most successful opticians to launch her own collection, which includes models suited to sun or ophthalmic lenses. The new model PFB 13 (above in red/tortoise effect), pictured on a girl at eyeQ Jamaica, offers a combination of glamorous elegance with the rich effect of the high-end acetate; it has a particularly individual look when glazed with optical lenses.
Unique screwless flat stainless-steel hinges and beveling techniques, along with signature end tips matching the fronts have the effect of deliberately complementing the matte finishes of these designs – a detail achieved by special lamination techniques and Japanese polishing – no corners are cut in this very chic detailing. The frames can be glazed as opticals or fitted with a subtle gradient mirror and flash lens, just right for beach wear and summer parties.
The brand is now available in some unique stores including Selima Optique (NYC) and Eye Q Optical (Manor Park, Kingston, Jamaica). For more information about Peoples from Barbardos go to www.peoplesfrombarbados.com and visit Alicia’s store Eye Q at Limegrove Lifestyle Centre Holetown, Barbados. CN
The Iconic Series-4001 In Collaboration With Stephanie Pfriender Stylander – featuring Kate Moss
Christian Roth’s reissue of Series-4001, the dramatic, otherworldly eyewear silhouette that defined the look of a decade as featured by Kate Moss in 1992 comes as no surprise.
Interest in the Series-4001 soared with the publication of “The Untamed Eye,” a fashion monograph released by photographer Stephanie Pfriender Stylander in September last year. The book’s cover features a black and white photograph of Moss, then 17, and a relatively unknown talent; she is lifting the Series-4001 sunglasses over her eyes to reveal a gaze that has since graced an unprecedented number of magazine covers and fashion campaigns.
“Kate, during her early years, had an innate magic mix of vulnerability, curiousness and determination,” Pfriender Stylander recalls. “When I shot these pictures, we were at the beginning of our careers. We were young and unknown, and the story plays homage to that — romanticizing this period of youthful innocence.” The story, commissioned by Harper’s Bazaar Uomo, was one of Moss’s first fashion editorials, and quickly set the tone for the gritty, restless style that became synonymous with the early 1990s.
The successful launch of “The Untamed Eye” inspired Christian Roth and business partner, Eric Domege, to collaborate with Pfriender Stylander on a reissue of the style from the cover. “Stephanie’s photographs are nearly three decades old, but the ideas and emotions they capture — young love, rebellion, curiosity — are timeless,” Roth explains. “After speaking about her work and its significance to our label’s heritage, it was clear that the time had arrived to share a piece of our history with a new generation.”
Set the beaches sizzling when wearing elegantly sculpted Re-Belle by bespoke frame artisans Plein Les Mirettes. Crafted in Normandy in beautiful acetate with a lustrous sheen, Re-Belle is a symphony of sleek colours – navy silhouetted with accents of orange, white and sea foam, with a three-dimensional character. The unique colourations in Plein Les Mirettes are among the many specific and luxurious details infused in the frame creations by the independent label. Visit www.plein-les-mirettes.fr for more discoveries in distinctive eyewear designs. JG
Independent optical store owner and eyewear expert launches own collection with NA eyewear
Dana Prekopova opened a boutique style optical shop in Slovakia in 2005 – a time when very few independent collections had reached her home town of Bratislava. “The beginnings were not really easy,” she explains. “Slovak clients weren’t well educated about “independent eyewear”. I began to introduce individual pieces gradually.”
The first original, handmade frame collection stocked by IOKO came from French artisan designers Vue dc. “At that time this was a young brand as well and the people behind it seemed to me extraordinary and original. We first met at Opti – the trade fair in Munich, and we immediately had an incredible connection.”
As her business grew, Dana became more and more enthusiastic about unique independent brands and she started to organize events “IOKO Meets…”. “I later started to invite all the independent manufacturers of spectacles we represent in our shop. My idea was supported by the Slovak National Gallery, an incredible place for a presentation of original design and the people behind all brands. For three years we hosted designers like Jason and Karen Kirk, Fréderic Ferrant, Chris and Yoma Mascre, Allan and Bettina Petersen, Sergio Eusebi and Livio Grazziotin, and Veronika Wildgruber, who won the prestigious Silmo d’Or 2017 the same year she was presented at one of our events. Our latest event was dedicated to our new own label. In October 2018 we launched IOKO & NA eyewear – this is a personal passion set up as a small creative start up.”
“IOKO x NA Eyewear is my dream come true” – above, photoshoot featuring the new collaborative collection
Asked to explain her plans with her own line Dana tells the story from the beginning: “I should tell you that Slovakia, after the dissolution of Czechoslovakia in 1992, didn’t have any eyewear production or history in this field, on which we might have built or drawn ideas. When we used to be Czechoslovakia, the production of spectacles was located in Czech and there it remained.
The aim of the IOKO events in cooperation with the Slovak National Gallery was to speak not only to the public but also to young designers, who might be interested to start a business in this field. I eventually came across one young ambitious Czech jeweler who decided to produce handmade spectacles under her own brand: NA Eyewear. Connected at first on social media, after some time Dana visited NA’s founder in her studio. “I really wanted to get to know her work and hold the final product in my hands.
I travelled to Prague to meet Nastassia Kahotski Aleinikava and Pavel Kahotski. From that moment I knew that together we could develop a perfect result…and this is when the new IOKO collection was born. This day became one of the most special days of my life, and on the way back I was sitting in the train drawing first proposals for new frames.”
The first IOKO x NA collaborative collection is launched with six models, each one produced with three alternatives, in colour and design. Each frame is exclusively handmade and, in the method used, there is zero waste. The frames are produced in Mazzuccheli’s bio acetate, and presented in an original jewellery box or a compact textile packaging by designer Lea Fekete. “Her works are special because of the textile produced through a special technique of layering wool and silk.” The collection is now available exclusively at IOKO, launched with beautiful portrait imagery featuring Dana herself. For more information visit www.ioko.sk and www.naeyewear.comCN
Pearly items are the thing to wear this season – according to British Vogue, who positively love this trend for earrings, bags, hairclips and the like. Trend-focused brand Frame Chain has been working the look for several months, and continue to reintroduce new pearl accented chain designs which immediately sell out! Favourites include Pearly Queen (above) featuring hand sourced fresh water pearls and the recent addition to the collection, Teenage Kicks, a necklace style chain with small Keshi pearl – the colour and texture of which are similar to sea shells.
The London brand – created by female design duo Vanessa Harrington and Ann-Magret Kearney, has successfully paved the way for a new style of accessory that perfectly enhances the coolest and most stylish eyewear designs available. Catch their summer designs (if you can!) at leading stockists such as London department store Liberty’s (https://www.libertylondon.com) or visit the Frame Chain website for the latest releases and special editions. www.framechain.co.ukCN