Swiss design, Sol Sol Ito: 044 DF

Swiss design label Sol Sol Ito has some memorable shapes amongst its ‘Original’ collection, of which the 039 and 035 are two of the standout shapes (find more of the models at https://www.eyestylist.com/2019/05/sol-sol-ito-captivating-sun-styles-that-sizzle/). This month, another standout one has joined the series, based on a classic teardrop pilot shape with a beautiful double bridge. A close inspection reveals a slight lift on the upper rim and a svelte ‘sculpted’ lower rim, typical of the 1970s (both the acetate and metal designs in this genre).

044 DF: the makings of an icon at Sol Sol Ito, Switzerland

Colours at Sol Sol Ito come together as if from an artist’s palette, with some of the most outstanding yet subtle graduated tones we are currently seeing and a choice of rich hues as well as transparent ‘crystal’ pastel tones. The new 044 DF frame is offered in hand polished yellow-green, brown-orange and beige-gold – paired with the lightweight modular ‘click-in’ temples,  the design of which Sol Sol Ito has become especially well-known.

Sol Sol Ito glasses and sunglasses are produced by design duo Monika Fink (designer/sculptor) and Sandra Kaufmann (co-head, industrial design, Zurich University) in Switzerland. Their sun and optical collections are stocked by some of the finest opticians worldwide including Auerbach & Steele (London). For more details and further stockists, visit www.solsolito.com. Above: Photography for Sol Sol Ito by Hans Hansen.

John Lennon’s glasses in London auction

Sotheby’s to auction items from across The Beatles’s career including iconic Oliver Goldsmith wire-framed sunspecs

Described by the auction house as “The most iconic sunglasses in rock and roll history”, the round metal rimmed glasses were given to Lennon for a role in the film ‘How I Won the War’ and caught on as his signature look. They later came into the possession of The Beatles’s’ chauffeur, Alan Herring, left behind in the back of his Mercedes.

John Lennon sunglasses by Oliver Goldsmith c. 1966 – owned by chauffeur Alan Herring and now going to auction

“In the summer of 1968 I had picked John up with Ringo and George in Ringo’s Mercedes and driven the boys into the office,” recalls Herring. “When John got out of the car I noticed he’d left these sunglasses on the back seat and one lens and one arm had become disconnected. I asked John if he’d like me to get them fixed for him. He told me not to worry, they were just for the look! He said he’d send out for some that fit. I never did get them mended – I just kept them as they were as John had left them.”

Archive image of model Cluj – which was available in three colours. Image by kind permission of Oliver Goldsmith Sunglasses

The glasses themselves were a version of the model ‘Cluj’ (see above) and an example with the same gold finish is still to be found in the Oliver Goldsmith Sunglasses London archive, according to Claire Goldsmith, Oliver’s great granddaughter and custodian to an extensive rare collection of Oliver Goldsmith original frames with a rich and fascinating history. Claire said: “John Lennon was renowned for his eyewear and in particular the round metal frames we made for him. To be the brand that designed them is something we are very proud of.”

An original silkscreen poster, 1200 x 905mm., c.1967, pinholes in each corner (from the Apple Boutique) – with reference to John’s iconic round eyeglasses

The Beatles sale includes a number of other curious items including the psychedelic portrait of Lennon by Larry Smart (above). Also up for sale are a semi-acoustic guitar owned by George Harrison (guide price £40,000 to £60,000), shirts worn by the band, a parking ticket, and a collection of items from the homes of The Beatles, which include a toaster.

In 2007, a pair of Lennon’s sunglasses – worn during the band’s 1966 tour of Japan –  were expected to fetch £1 million pounds, according to The Telegraph. The final amount paid for the glasses was never disclosed.  (https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/1559161/John-Lennons-sunglasses-sold-at-auction.html).

The Sotheby’s auction takes place online from 2pm GMT on 6th December 2019 – 13th December 2019. For more information visit www.sothebys.com . All rights reserved. Photography: @ Sotheby’s Auction House / PA

Innovation 2020: opti Munich, Germany

Must-sees at the Munich fair – a packed fair is coming for January 2020

The Munich fair is expecting a busy turnout at the start of 2020. From emerging labels right through to historic eyewear brands, the showcase of eyewear collections at this important event gives a thorough overview of design developments, shining the spotlight on young innovators, creators as well as a host of high-profile fashion eyewear designers.

One of the standouts every year at opti – for artisan frames – is Res/Rei Italy, a small label with a dedicated following, owing to their creative style and close collaboration with Mazzucchelli which results in some very unique and detailed acetate materials. Their products are excellent with many unique and creative shapes and timeless qualities. We also particularly enjoy their covetable jewellery line – made from the leftover acetates – and offering a very chic and special design, with colours that match up with frames. Above: model Begonia from the nature-inspired Flowers collection at Res/Rei – different acetates combine and overlap with each other like the petals of exotic flowers. The frame is pictured in a pink/light pink colorway matched with plain grey lenses. Find out more at www.resrei.com

Eton Mess by theo – © 2018 copyright protected Artworks,
Photography & Graphic Design!

Belgian design innovators theo have had a particularly spectacular raft of designs launched through 2019, with highlights including their mouth-watering Layer Cake series – featuring titanium plate designs created with two different layers.

At opti, theo will release a completely new “typically theo” eyewear family which they tell us is “warm, soft and comforting yet strong, powerful and unyielding, like….sand.” Check their new website at www.theo.be for more details about their collections.

The sleek Alium Race 2 by FACE A FACE – advanced aluminium eyewear, inspired by the sports aviator shape

The Alium collection is always a must-see at the FACE A FACE stand. This is a very distinctive line with focus on men’s eyewear where a balance of technological excellence and a modern approach to colour offers something quite beautiful and different to wear. See more Alium frames at www.faceaface-paris.com

We Are Annu return to the opti boxes for 2020

We are Annu launched their collection at opti this year (check our Eyestylist opti review 2019 – www.eyestylist.com/2019/02/exceptional-design-at-opti/). We admire both the imaginative concept of paper clip inspired frames and their commitment to innovation and team success. A must-see for opti – find out more at www.weareannu.com

SALT. Optics: designed in California, made in Japan

SALT. Optics travels from California for the opti event, with a collection inspired by nature and produced with rigorous Japanese quality driven techniques. Alongside the main line collection, the brand has launched some must-see fashion-focused collabs, which include SALT. + Second Layer and SALT. + Fred Segal where attention to detail and shared values such as quality materials have resulted in exceptional limited editions. www.saltoptics.com

opti – the international trade show for optics & design, takes place at Fairground Munich from 10th to 12th January, 2020. Registration is now open to trade visitors at www.opti.de. Written by Clodagh Norton – all rights reserved.

Gift guide: Diffuser Tokyo accessories

Gift guide: Diffuser Tokyo eyewear accessories and leather jewellery for men and women

Diffuser’s range of accessories is part focused on eyewear, and part jewellery in its own right. Designed by Masaki Hirose who saw a lack of well-designed products in natural materials such as leather, the collection is extensive and well curated, expanding into neck cords and bracelets, as well as cases and cotton eyewear pouches in chic two-colour palettes.

Accessories at Diffuser Tokyo

Already popular in capital cities and stocked by department stores including Daimaru in Tokyo and the most exclusive optical retailers such as Decora, the brand has been recently “discovered” by European retailers and is gradually becoming more widely available in cities such as Paris and Berlin. Find them at Schoenhelden (Berlin), KLAR (Darmstadt, Germany), L’Artisan du Regard (Paris), Dunoyer Opticiens (Paris) and Bromptons Brighton (UK). Click on the link to view more products: https://diffuser-tokyo.com CN