On the surface: aged, natural + hand-finished

Buffalo horn. Fabric. Rubber. Acetate. The eye is drawn to the individual qualities of these materials in contemporary eyewear as young innovators highlight the form and structure of the product with special tactile details and deep nuances in coloration, some of these qualities, just visible with the naked eye.

In the Icons Line at Hapter, the rubberised surface featured has been developed to offer an exclusive tactile aesthetic and feel, with a retro inspiration and a slightly “aged” elegance. Italian founder Eric Balzan has invested years’ of research and development into collections that, for 2019, are further enhanced with a newly patented 8-GON Hinge. The brand will exhibit at Mido in the Design Lab (Pav 4 Stand S11) www.hapter.it Above: RBBR002 – the Icons Line – HAPTER

Rigards – buffalo horn

Rigards has attracted much attention in the last 12 months with their avantgarde collection, and in horn, they highlight the natural qualities of the material, the asymmetrical colorations and the beautiful striated patterns and effects where the surface is hand polished or left in its more natural state. www.rigards.com

Explorer – Delirious

Delirious Eyewear, the Milan label, produces buffalo horn frames with a distinct, light touch and artistic aesthetic: designed in Italy, the frames are made from natural Indian water buffalo horn. The process begins by milling two small boards of the same material; one for the front, and the other, for the temples. All the parts are ‘tumbled’, to smooth the little parts and surfaces in a process that can take up to a week. Finally, the artisans put the design together, polishing the surface with pads that highlight the details of the material and the brilliant surface. www.deliriouseyewear.com

Tactile by Tavat Eyewear

In a similar vein – studying the possibilities in surface finishes worked by hand, TAVAT Tactile includes models that have been hand scratched and designs worked on with a pin-stripe laser treatment – mimicking the lines of the iconic Italian “Riva” boat. The frames are made in Italy and designed to offer the utmost comfort on the face. www.tavateyewear.com CN

Find these and other innovators at Mido – the Milan trade fair – from 23-25 February 2019.