Boutiques

10 questions: Conor Heaney, Manchester

Conor Heaney is an optometrist and owner of Jones And Co. Styling Opticians in Manchester (UK). His practice has an average dispense value of more than £1300, over five times the optical industry average. The store stocks an eclectic choice of frames created by some of the finest independent eyewear labels from around the world.

1/ What would you say is your favourite part of running Jones And Co.? I went to university to learn how to be an optometrist but what I’ve fallen in love with is the business that is wrapped around that. I love that we get to choose what kind of practice we want to be, what we want to specialise in, how we want to treat people, and figuring out every aspect of our business philosophy. What I enjoy most is seeing the difference we make for our clients and seeing the growth and fulfilment of the individuals on my team, and seeing how inspired they are about doing what we do in the way we do it. It’s a joy to be part of a high-flying team that sets high standards and big goals and then strives to achieve them. It’s hard work! Often painful! But worth it. Our path is littered with things that didn’t work, but that’s how we grow and learn. Above: Conor Heaney (left) and the practice team at Jones And Co. Styling Opticians

Eyewear gallery at Jones And Co. – the store specialises in independent eyewear brands

2/ What’s your personal story when it comes to eyewear? When I decided to open my first practice (Seen) with best friend and fellow optometrist Tareq Moustafa, we thankfully realised we knew nothing about the world of eyewear. This was in 2004. Before we even had a location, we set off to Silmo and Mido and Opti-Munich and discovered a new world of independent eyewear. The passion of people like Jason Kirk and Mik Sommers, Shane Baum and Christophe Gilabert, Gregers Fastrup and the guys at Ørgreen rubbed off on us. I think most optometrists open a practice because they think they can do it better than the rest. It’s an honourable intention. It’s driven by the desire to do something better for the client. To delight clients. But saying it is easy. Delivering it consistently is hard with a capital H. It requires real commitment to the cause. You cannot deliver a world-class experience in our business unless you are working with the best of independent eyewear. Too many practices lack this excitement and passion for eyewear. To overlook this is like trying to be a Michelin star restaurant but using only the cheapest, blandest ingredients, and being afraid to offer anything different. So I got into eyewear design because I wanted to offer our clients the best experience. As much as it pains my fellow optometrists, our clients and patients care more about how they look and feel in eyewear, and the experience and treatment they receive as a customer, than they do about anything else. They only tolerate the optometry geek-speak. That’s not what wows them.

3/ Has Jones And Co. changed much since you first opened ? Jones And Co. Styling Opticians has been going since 1989 or so when it was first Angela Campbell Opticians. There was a bomb in Manchester city centre in 1996  that caused so much damage that the practice had to move to a new building in a different part of the city. The business struggled after that and went through a series of four owners in 10 years. Tareq and I bought the practice in 2009 and through blood, sweat and tears we were lucky enough to make a success of it. I’ve been the sole owner since 2014 and Tareq is the sole owner of Seen, just around the corner – and also thriving.

Has it changed much over the years? That question would make my team laugh out loud because we change so much! It is unrecognisable. The skill is to figure out how much change will frazzle the team and cause nervous breakdowns and just dial it back a notch so that doesn’t happen. But it’s been a constant journey of change and improvement. Not change for the sake of change. But change in search of making something better and keeping things fresh and exciting for the team and the clients.

Illustration of Jones And Co. – Manchester – featured on a cleaning cloth

4/ Regarding your own personal taste in eyewear, what frame are you wearing this season? I’ll start with a secret confession. I have no prescription, but I wear glasses anyway. After a few years of dabbling in, but not really wearing them, I forced myself to wear them all the time for work. If I’m in the practice, or at an event with clients, or on stage presenting to other optometrists I always wear them. I think that’s the best bit of advice I can give here, more than what frame I am wearing at the moment. This goes back to the client experience again. If a client is being served by someone who looks great in their choice of eyewear it is reassuring, even inspiring to the client who cares about how they look in glasses. It is a clear demonstration that you know what you are talking about. If I want my team to all wear glasses all the time, then I must lead by example. One of my team came to work one morning, a few weeks after starting at Jones And Co. and said “Sorry, Conor I forgot my glasses at home.” I asked him what he would do if he discovered on his way to work that he wasn’t wearing any trousers? He said he would RUN home in embarrassment to get dressed fully. I explained that at Jones And Co. his glasses are his trousers. I don’t want to see naked faces and staff walking around with their noses hanging out. Trousers must be worn at all times!

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ROLF – substance – a popular choice at Jones And Co. in 2022

5/ What do you think of current trends and do you have a favourite look in 2022 My team are enjoying Rolf’s Substance collection this year. We’ve worked with Rolf and their wooden frames for years but the new 3D printed collection made from plants really puts sustainability and design and technology at the forefront. They’re a joy to wear and have been really popular with clients. We also linked up with a local charity focused on planting trees and managing woodlands and we donate just under 10% of each Rolf Substance frame sale to the charity.

Another new addition to our collection this year that has the team giddy with excitement is Sabine Be, an extremely expressive and colourful collection that makes a strong statement. Whatever ranges you bring into your practice have to align with a well thought out eyewear philosophy and there has to be a strategy behind it. There is so much amazing eyewear out there that you have to be strategic about what you are doing and why. Collections with depth and breadth like Theo are fantastic because there is so much you can do with it and it just keeps going and going with always new evolutions every season.

6/ What is your best tip on choosing eyewear? In a word; enthusiasm. Selling is the transference of emotion. If the person doing the selling and serving is not enthusiastic neither will the client be. Eyewear can be boring, or it can be exciting and inspiring. It’s a simple choice that makes all the difference. Too many independent practices still haven’t grasped the significance of the eyewear opportunity they have. Eyewear and optical is an afterthought and it shows. If eyewear is an after-though that has just been tagged on in your practice as a distant second to optometry, it is extremely obvious to me and to your clients. That’s why average spend, and conversions and referrals and recommendations are low. That’s why clients walk out with their prescription and continue their search for eyewear elsewhere. The crux of the matter is your approach to eyewear and the standards you insist on in your practice. Without that foundation all the tips in the world will make little difference. The good news for readers of Eyestylist is that if you’re here reading this, you get it. I salute you!

7/ As well as running the store you run the OSA (Optical Success Academy) – what is this organisation and what made you set it up? Optical Success Academy is a place I created for open-minded, ambitious, individualistic optometrists and opticians who want to take their optical practice to the next level. It’s not enough to just have the right products and create the right environment. Warby Parker has inspired a troop of great looking stores with appealing products that sell at low, low prices and with a big online presence. Independents need to be better than that by being more sophisticated about every aspect of their business. The big differentiator is our people – the staff who deliver the customer experience. Doing that at world-class levels doesn’t happen by accident. It’s hard to do that consistently day in and day out. The staff need leadership. They need processes that work and that make it easier to get the desired results. They need systems. They need to learn how to sell and really master that skillset. There needs to be a culture in the practice and a vision that drives everything. And there needs to be a clear understanding of marketing and how to attract the specific type of clients you want, and making it clear why you are worth what they’re going to spend with you and why they can’t get that anywhere else.

Being a practice owner myself, I learned all this the hard way through research and experimentation and testing and spending my own money figuring out what works and what doesn’t. As well as being inspired by the greats in our industry, I’ve had coaches and mentors from many outside industries who have influenced me and how I’ve differentiated my practice. After being invited to speak at various optical conferences in the UK and Europe I started putting everything we do at Jones And Co. into a format that is easy to share with other like-minded independents so they can benefit from it too and we now have a monthly program with about 130 practices where we provide monthly coaching calls, staff training, marketing examples, and four live events a year. Readers can find out more at www.opticalsuccessacademy.com – we have a podcast and a bunch of resources at www.theopticalentrepreneur.com. (more…)

10 questions: Johnnie Rousso, Athens

Coming from a family of opticians, Johnnie Rousso was always destined to travel down the optical career path. Since its establishment in 2016, his eponymous, bar-themed boutique has become widely regarded as one of Europe’s premier optical stores. Eyestylist speaks to the eccentric, extroverted founder and visionary following a personal visit to the store in Athens in February 2022…

1. Tell us a little about yourself, and the career path you’ve taken to where you are today? So, I’m an optometrist with a BSc from Anglia Ruskin, Cambridge, where I studied from 2001 to 2005. I worked there for a year as well, in the city centre’s Boots Opticians; that was my first experience of working as an optician and in the optical world in general. I then moved to New York in 2005 and stayed until 2010. There, I pursued an MSc from NYU in International Business while working full time as a retail salesperson, going on to become a manager in the years to follow.

This environment introduced me to the world of fashion and business at the same time and, of course, the vibrant and diverse lifestyle of New York inspired me – it continues to inspire me still. Next, I moved to Greece until 2016 when Johnnie Rousso opened its doors to the public. My team and I developed the business plan of what we wanted our store to be, and implemented the final idea of the Optical bar. Six years later, Johnnie Rousso is recognised across the industry as a bespoke optical store as well as for its services in behavioral optometry.

2. You seem like an incredibly extroverted and creative person, did you always envision yourself going into eyewear? Firstly, yes – I guess I am a people’s person! Secondly, also yes – I come from a family of opticians, my late father was an optician, so the idea of progressing within this field came naturally, but my love of retail began in New York. I realised that I loved meeting and coming into contact with people, something that has always been interesting to me, and it is very embedded in the culture of this city. Above: Johnnie Rousso wears the Drake by In Barberia – Bottega Ottica

Bespoke eyewear: Drake by In Barberia (Treviso) – available at the Athens store

3. In the store you have created an amazing opportunity for bespoke frames made in Treviso, Italy. Tell us more…In the first lockdown of 2020 I first made contact with my colleagues Marco and Antonio from In Barberia – a fantastic shop in Treviso, Italy. Even though we couldn’t meet in person at the time, our passion for eyewear and our similar business philosophies brought us together. So, we started collaborating on this very unique project. Making acetate frames from scratch and satisfying every customer’s need in sizing and colours is very important, but also very difficult to satisfy in today’s environment.

Although handmade frames are available quite easily, handcrafting eyewear from scratch is a forgotten craft due to the impossibility of satisfying today’s market.

So, the collaboration with In Barberia Treviso gave us the opportunity to offer this fantastic service to our customers who want something really unique, completely handcrafted and made to their own specified needs. It’s a really great project to be part of and I am very proud to be involved.

Johnnie Rousso’s Athens store: the main entrance

4. Your website speaks a lot of your experience in both New York and London, why did you choose to start your venture in Athens when you felt so inspired by these two cities? Athens is my hometown, it’s where I grew up and lived until I was 18 years old. It’s becoming a very cosmopolitan city and the decision to be here in the city center came naturally as a result of our need to be international, conveniently located and diverse.

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5. Your approach to social media marketing is more ‘out there’ than a lot of other companies, you tend to go down a personal / comedic route, why did you make this decision? Well, I generally find social media in our field very “sterilized”, if I can refer to it that way. We all take ourselves too seriously sometimes, and I believe in a more fun approach when it comes to marketing. I believe this is more memorable and at the same time more entertaining for people to watch and interact with. It’s also based on the fact that we are opticians and we are selling glasses, I don’t believe that’s something that sparks people’s interest enough to engage in videos on its own. To watch content that is spontaneous, though, is more intriguing, especially since we always post the first take of the video and upload it as raw as it can be.

The stylish interior of the store was designed by Darch Studio

6. In outlining your process for meeting clients and finding their perfect frame, you lean heavily on the personal aspect – an emphasis on the coffee / drink to discuss wants and needs – of the customer / salesperson relationship. Why do you think this is such an important part of your process? Customer experience is always key in selling anything, and luxury eyewear is no different. The clients have to feel comfortable first and foremost, this is why we started the design of the store with a bar. In a good, elegant bar you stay to relax, to meet people, to have a drink, chat away and enjoy. We wanted the same energy to radiate throughout our store. Even the lighting is dimmer than usual stores, the music is bar-like and of course we serve drinks and coffee as part of the experience. This relaxes the senses, takes the guard down and brings us closer to our customers. We build their trust through this process before moving on to discuss eyewear, then they can choose the best frame to suit their needs.

7. What do you look for when selecting a brand / frame to stock in store? We select labels based on their philosophy, as well as taking the people behind the brand into consideration. We don’t care about “brand names” and what is “popular” or not. We are only interested in originality and design, that’s where we find our inspiration.

8. Do you include a selection of vintage frames? We have a few collectible vintage frames in store which are not really for sale; they are part of our archive. I strongly admire the many advantages of vintage collections, and that has to do with quality and originality most of the time. Nowadays, many brands try to copy instead of being original. This bothers me, so we are very careful to avoid stocking new labels like this when we choose a contemporary brand. We need to be inspired, so that we in-turn inspire our friends and customers alike.

9. If you had to select one frame that symbolises the typical Johnnie Rousso customer what frame would that be and why? There are a few to choose from, but if I have to choose, it would be the Cazal 607. Why? Because of the history of its creator and designer Cari Zalloni alongside the entire story behind this fantastic model. I have to mention Kuboraum, though, due to the immense inspiration we are getting from our Italian friends, Livio and Sergio. Their first model A with the comet-like stones and burnt texture is massively influential to us, too.

As worn by Johnnie Rousso: Jean Paul Gaultier vintage sunglasses (left) and the 607 Cazal sunglasses (right)

10. What frames are you wearing today? I like to own many frames, but I mainly wear the Drake model from In Barberia Treviso, the Cazal 607 (of course!) and a vintage Jean Paul Gaultier Junior frame (pictured above) among many, many others. For more information about the store visit https://johnnierousso.gr/en/

An interview by Victoria G. L. Brunton exclusively for Eyestylist.com. All rights reserved. 

Kuboraum’s 10th Annniversary: “10 years of travelling”

Special anniversary celebrations for 2022, and a new store in Milan

On the occasion of its 10th Anniversary, Kuboraum has celebrated the journey that started in Berlin in 2012 with a year-long series of events, exploring the brand’s relationship with eyewear, music and art. The event invites everyone to leave behind preconceptions about reality and go beyond the physical world, to embark on a journey that aims to create a strong sense of community. Ultimately, the goal of the project is to trigger a movement which will encourage people to dig deeper and reveal their personal inner self, as Kuboraum’s manifesto ‘We Travel To Know Our Own Geography’ recites. Sharing these common values, Kuboraum & Terraforma have presented a co-curated event series as part of ‘10 Years Of Travelling’ which will take place throughout the year in different spaces in collaboration with various multidisciplinary artists. This project will involve evocative locations and will explore the relationship between music, art and the urban dimension. Above: interior of the new KUBORAUM + INNERRAUM store in Milan (Photography: @piercarloqueccia DSL Studio)

A ‘patchwork’ wall of plaster sculpture in the new Milan store (@emi_maggi)

After a successful first event in Venice during the opening of the 59th Venice Biennale, Kuboraum announced a ‘10 Years Of Travelling’ event in Milan on April 28th at CASA FLASH ART, along with the inauguration of the new KUBORAUM & INNERRAUM Flagship Store in the centre of Milan. Besides an exhibition of Kuboraum’s Eye Couture masks, which focused on precious Italian handcraft and follows the brand’s genesis and evolution, the artists involved in this event were AGNES QUESTIONMARK (Agnes?), who presented her new performance SIRENOMELIA, and a DJ set by PAN label head Bill Kouligas.

Agnes?, born in Rome and based in London, with her SIRENOMELIA explored the depths and limits of identity and evolution, which stem from her own personal exploration. Depicted as an aquatic hybrid creature, she wishes to portray a metaphor for body and identity as liquid entities that constantly change in form and shape. Bill Kouligas, founder and artistic director of the multidisciplinary platform and record label PAN, investigated identity in terms of music, embarking on a journey into the unknown through other-worldly sounds that define conventions of ‘genre’.

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Details: interior, KUBORAUM & INNERRAUM Flagship Store – Milan

The KUBORAUM & INNERRAUM Flagship Store opened at via Bigli 24, in the centre of Milan, and consists of two rooms, with a powerful design that goes beyond the usual concept of retail. As a post on the brand’s Instagram page explains, one room features Kuboraum and presents a patchwork wall of plaster as a tribute by founder Livio to the Italian Neo Classical sculptor Antonio Canova, and sculptures by artist Emiliano Maggi that combine psychedelic scenarios with mythological symbolism and rural iconography inspired by fairy tales and dreams. The second room houses Innerraum and has a sci-fi style light box with a glass bookcase made by Glass Italia in collaboration with the architect Andrea Eusebi.

Via Bigli 24, Milan, Italy

A feature by Alberto Massaro exclusively for Eyestylist.com. Images by kind permission of Andrea Eusebi, architect. Sculpture by @emi_maggi. Photography; @piercarloqueccia – @dsl_studio. All rights reserved. 

A sustainable vision: Optanicals, Weimar, Germany

A new German store specialising in sustainable eyewear

Bringing a new meaning to ‘sustainable eyewear’, OPTANICALS considers their impact on the planet in every aspect of their business model – even their name takes inspiration from Mother Earth. With frames in wood and beans to styles in recycled repurposed materials and strictly fitting their store with old furniture – to name just a few of these endeavours – the company truly sets a bar for optical businesses looking to make a step towards a greener future.

“Our motto is “sustainable optician” explain owners Tina and Paul.  “We are usually looking for sustainable producers exclusively. In fact, the options in this area are rather limited and therefore the selections we do make are also smaller. Our brands are made from recycled plastic, metal, ocean plastic, wood and even beans – we have created our own brand, and we also sell Rolf Spectacles, Sea2see, Dick Moby and neubau. The materials have special properties and have a long product life, which are both very important to us. We think that fast fashion is receding more and more into the background, and we want to avoid that.

“…we hope that our concept will be well received and that more projects with sustainability in mind will be implemented in the optical industry in the near future. Our goal and wish is that we can open more shops in Germany and thus enable more people to choose new glasses with a sustainable approach.” Optanicals

Optanicals – a new sustainable eyewear store in Weimar

Optanicals have even gone as far as creating their own brand, crafted in wood and manufactured close to the Weimar store. “We can adapt the glasses individually to each customer and our frames are characterised by their comfortable fit as well as their lightness. We also stock Rolf frames that are made from castor beans and are incredibly strong; they’re made from the castor bean plant using 3D printing. You can sit on them, tie the temples, and even twist the temple hinges completely without breaking the frame. Other frames we stock are made from recycled metal and plastic, these have a very comfortable fit and are mostly unique. Some especially individual frames, are Sashee Schuster´s range – she works with flowers, grass, feathers, and coloured peppers.”

Asked if there was a particular moment or turning point that stands out in terms of when they realised they wanted to live and work more sustainably, the co-owners are open. “Both of us, independently of one another, have already become attached to and hold sustainability at a very high level of importance. The problem at the beginning was more ‘how do we make this  accepted’ and then ‘where does  it make sense to try out our concepts?’. Above all, the idea was not well received by everyone. People met us with criticism, they might talk about “greenwashing” or make comments like “can you eat the frames then?” from time to time. But our decision was made during a hike, when I called Paul and said: “No risk, no fun. We’ll  just do it now….” – and so, our  sustainable store was born.

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On transparency and the development of sustainable collections in eyewear, the team is knowledgeable, passionate and open. “Every pair of glasses made from newly acquired, raw materials is a step in the wrong direction, and the packaging and production methods are just as much a part of the product” they explained to Eyestylist. “You should always look at the whole picture, not just one part of it. The glasses are not just a product in themselves, they represent the manufacturer’s attitude towards sustainability and its implementation; think about transport routes, production methods and materials. All of this should be completely sustainable, which it is not right now; only at that point will we have reached our goal!”

“We are trying to implement an entirely sustainable business model,” they explained. “From frame materials, to shorter transport routes and production within Europe. It’s also important to us that the manufacturers control the direction of CO2 neutrality. This is why we decided to use Zeiss lenses, made for our customers in Germany. Zeiss also chooses ‘blanks’ that do not produce so much waste. As we mentioned, we decided on fitting our shop out with strictly old furniture and materials, on top of that we are going completely digital, avoiding paper waste. Our glasses cleaning set consists of a linen bag that Paul’s mum sewed for us, and we refill the glasses cleaning spray free of charge. Oh, and our neighbour will soon be making glasses ‘cords’ for us from old garbage bags. We also hope that we can afford a new filter system for our grinding machine in August, this would filter any plastic from the water circuit of the system. What is filtered out can then ultimately be recycled and thus found a new use – as you can see, we have done a lot, but we know we still have a lot to change.”

Optanicals in Weimar is run by Tina and Paul

For store design, the simple approach is a breath of fresh air, original and clear with the sustainable message.  “Our colour concept was already in place before we even found our constructor. Since the theme is sustainability and our name “Optanicals” is made up of the words ‘Botanicals’ and ‘Optician’, a green colour scheme felt only natural. When we were looking for our interior designer, one thing was of absolute importance; no new furniture. So, we found an interior designer via Instagram who knew how to give new life to old furniture; he took up the colour concept and implemented it with vintage furniture. We were more than lucky finding him and we know no one could have been a better fit. Each piece we have is unique and his eye for the overall aesthetic was really outstanding. A favourite example is our till: old doors were converted in such a way that it would have a new use. Our business is uniquely sustainable and there is nobody like us in the world!” For more information about Optanicals, visit www.optanicals.de

Kaufstraße 18, 99423 Weimar, Germany

Co-written by Victoria L. Brunton and Clodagh Norton. An exclusive feature by Eyestylist.com.

10 questions – Daniel Brunson: Hicks Brunson Eyewear, Tulsa, Oklahoma

In a new conversation series with personalities in optics, we talked to Daniel Brunson, the owner of Hicks Brunson Eyewear in Tulsa – whose taste for great glasses and luxury brands we’ve come to enjoy @hicksbrunson and @daniel.g.brunson on Instagram. The store is located at 2020 Utica Square, Tulsa, Oklahoma 74114. Above: Daniel wears Orion by Masunaga x Kenzo Takada

1/What’s your USP at Hicks Brunson? We carry a wide selection of independent eyewear that skews towards the high-end luxury segment, and we take opticianry seriously.  We take as much time as needed to style and fit our clients, and we get to know them on a personal level so we can understand their unique needs.

2/From where has your taste for luxury eyewear grown and evolved? I brought Tom Davies eyewear into my store in 2007, and at that point I realized the importance and the value of working with independent designers.  I met Tom in person a few years later at Vision Expo West in 2009, and I realized he was someone I wanted to continue to partner with.  I eventually carried his luxury horn and sterling silver frames.  I even carried two sunglasses he once made that had salmon skin on the frame fronts.  He and I reminisced about the salmon skin frames at Vision Expo East this year, and we both agreed that we don’t think anyone else has probably ever used salmon skin on a frame.  I eventually went on to carry luxury brands like Leisure Society known for 18K and 24k gold plating.  My most recent luxury brand acquisition was bringing in T Henri this year at Vision Expo East.  I am very excited about working with Tyler and his beautiful line all inspired by the world’s rarest performance vehicles.

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3/What frame are you wearing today? Today I am wearing my newest frame, which is a model by Gotti Switzerland called Pieper.  It is actually a sunglasses frame that I converted to an optical by making Transitions XTRActive Brown lenses for it. It is a navigator shape in matte gold titanium.  The coolest feature is the Spin & Stow temples.  The hinges have a spin feature so you can rotate them 180 degrees before folding them so they lay perfectly flat against the wrapped frame front. This allows them to fold up in a more compact way so as to fit into a smaller case than would otherwise be possible.

Daniel wearing T Henri Continental in the color Vapor

4/ Do you have a go-to frame for special events and parties? That would my signature special event look, which is a frame by Masunaga. It is the model 000 in classic black. I love this frame for the bold and thick silhouette, the seven-barrel titanium hinge, and the fact that it has been made since the 1960s which makes it iconic in my mind. I have recently updated the lenses to the new Transitions XTRActive Polarized technology.

5/ What’s you best tip on finding a classic frame that REALLY suits the wearer (it’s not always easy finding THE ONE in a short space of time….) You have to ask questions to find out what they like and do not like about their current glasses.  Once you have a general idea of the direction to head in, then you starting trying things on.  I usually like to see two to four shapes on their face, and look at bridge fit to determine the best size, shape, and fit. This gets easier with practice. After enough fittings you come to recognize face shapes that look best in certain frame shapes, and you absolutely have to know your inventory.
 
6/ Color of 2022 (for you personally this year)? How do you choose just one?  I feel my best in black, especially when it’s a heavy statement frame like my Masunaga 000.
 
7/ Favorite frame silhouette and why? I love the navigator shape, whether as  sunglasses or an optical. It’s so classic, and not as commonly worn as the aviator.
 
8/ Most interesting fact about your store and its historic origins “since 1952″? Our founder Hicks G. Brunson, who was my great grandfather, was running an American Optical store in downtown Tulsa in the years before he founded Hicks Brunson Eyewear.  AO was going through a period of selling off many of their optical dispensaries and he bought the store he was managing and changed the name to Hicks Brunson.  So in that way we are connected to the quite old and iconic American Optical brand.
Hicks Brunson Eyewear in Oklahoma
9/ Next foreign trip, holiday or optical event for work and why? I’m sure by the time this feature has published it will have already happened, but shortly I am headed to Orlando, Florida for Transitions Academy.  This will be my seventh time attending and it is easily one of my favorite optical events.  I think it may be one of the industry’s best kept secrets.  I have seen fantastic speakers there.  The kind of speakers who give TED Talks. I have also connected with some of my best industry friends from whom I have been fortunate to learn much over the years.
10/ What’s next in the world of Hicks Brunson Eyewear?  I’m really excited about the new luxury brand T Henri that I picked up this year at Vision Expo East. The metal is all pure Japanese titanium from Sabae, and it is 18k gold plated.  Each frame is part of a limited-edition production, which means they only make from 40 to 99 pieces at most in any one colorway.  Each frame is engraved with the production number, and comes with a certificate corresponding to that number.  They are all really beautiful, and as I said before, Tyler Henri designed the frames by taking inspiration from the world’s rarest performance vehicles. The label has been doing really well with our clients, and we are excited to be one of the exclusive retailers to carry it.
For further details about Hicks Brunson Eyewear, visit www.HicksBrunson.com
This feature is an Eyestylist Exclusive. All rights reserved.