Boutiques

Grotesque Frame KG, Villingendorf, Germany

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5th May 2011 German eyewear designers Grotesque Frame KG have created a new optical store inside two 40 foot seacontainers. The shop is located in Villingendorf in southern Germany, and stocks Grotesque frames, alongside IC! Berlin, Orgreen, Tipton, and Herrlicht. The store has decided to take steps not to represent brands producing in territories they refer to as “low wage” countries.

 

“We wanted to create an eye catcher from the outside, but a noble, relaxing, clean look on the inside,” explains Daniel Benner, founder of Grotesque. “It has taken us 12 months to create the shop; when you go inside you feel like you are in a very special place, not a container, the contrast is exciting and very unexpected.” CN

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www.grotesque-frame.com

Jones and Co. Styling Opticians, Manchester, UK

Fine eyewear comes to Manchester

The former Bank of England building on Manchester’s King Street is the impressive location of one of the UK’s most exclusive optical stores. Jones and Co. Styling Opticians has undergone a major renovation project this year, and now boasts an interior that rivals some of Europe’s finest optical retailers.

Attracting a style conscious and successful, professional clientele, the store offers impeccable service and a structured styling service, to help people choose their glasses. “We want the customer to enjoy a relaxing yet inspiring eyewear experience,” explains director Conor Heaney.  “We only display around 30 optical frames at a time, to excite our customers a taste of what’s on offer, and we change this display every day. We recommend frames to each individual using a well refined and structured styling process that depends on many factors. Our approach is such that the customer generally tends to find something better than what they were expecting, in a sumptuous stress -free environment, with a décor that is evocative of an old-fashioned private library. We are also very clinically minded and offer state-of-the-art testing facilities.”

 

Vintage furniture and an elegant decor at Jones and Co.

 

Jones and Co. offers exclusive brands, some of which are not easily found in the UK. These include Alain Mikli, Chrome Hearts, Etnia, Face à Face, Gold & Wood, l.a. eyeworks, Lindberg and Theo. The new interior was opened just 2 months ago after a refit lasting 4 months. Designers ‘93ft’ from Sheffield have created three separate yet unified areas: the reception, the testing rooms and the eyewear gallery. The optical frames are situated a considerable distance from the sunglasses, also intentional, allowing customers an uncluttered space where the product can then speak for itself. Handpainted wallpaper, industrial storage cupboards and retro furniture, deep, warm yet subdued colours with touches of vibrant yellow and an intentional feeling of open space instead of cluttered shelving gives an overall effect of quality, design appreciation and attention to detail. A welcome addition to the UK’s independent optical retailing business, Jones and Co. Styling Opticians has cast a new direction for the consumer who wishes to explore an interesting selection of creative eyewear designers and lesser known luxury eyewear brands. CN

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Jones and Co. Styling Opticians, 82 Upper King Street, Manchester, M2 4WQ T 0161 834 7798

www.jonesand.co.uk

 

Little Opta, Paris

An eyewear boutique ‘just for kids’

Tucked away in the atmospheric environment of Montmartre is an adorable children’s optical boutique, the inspiration of Parisian optician Annette Hoffmann. The enterprising Hoffmann has three other optical locations in Montmartre, but she has a particular philosophy for youngsters.  “Children have their own shops for clothes, shoes and toys, so I thought ‘why not a boutique just for children’s optics?’ I believe that children need a special place of their own to try on eyewear.”

Display of sunglasses, Little Opta

 

Hoffmann opened the little jewel of a boutique – it’s just 25 square meters – four year ago, on a lovely tree-lined street in Montmartre, an area beloved by painters Renoir, Van Gogh and Picasso. The shop’s sparkling white interior is enhanced with antiques, another passion of Hoffmann’s. As the leading optician in the area for decades, she knows the value of offering superior quality frames and personal service.

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“We like to make appointments and spend time with parents and their children; kids love to look at the frames and then pick out what they want to try on.  Children like to wear glasses now, because it is really cool.” Little Opta offers only the crème de la crème from companies, as Hoffmann points out that creating quality frames for kids requires technical knowledge of a child’s face. The boutique stocks Lafont, ic! berlin, Karavan Kids, and Eye’DJ, among others. Little Opta is a charming oasis for kid’s frames, and opticians Jennifer and Victor are on hand to provide a warm and professional optical experience for both parents and their children. JG

Little Opta, 81, rue Caulaincourt 75018 Paris Tel: +33 (0) 1 4254 12 60 www.opta-createurs.com

J.F. Rey in New York

French brand opens own store 

6th March, 2011 The French spectacle brand J.F. Rey has opened an optical boutique in Manhattan this Spring…run by a well-known optician called Joel Name who has been working in the business for many years. The shop can be found at 448 West Broadway, New York NY 10012.

Created by designer Jean-Francois Rey, J.F. Rey frames have a unique look about them – the designs are very trendy, often quite futuristic in shape and concept and feature very accomplished detailing. All J.F. Rey frames are produced in France. The company also produces a label called BOZ, which is very feminine and decorative, again with a unique touch typical of the J.F.Rey design studio. CN

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www.jfrey.fr

In A White Box, Strà, Veneto, Italy

Avant-garde store conjurs up some exciting surprises

There are multifarious reasons to visit Venice – the beauty of the Grand Canal, immortalised by Caneletto, Guardi and other notable painters: the illustrious La Fenice, the opera house intricately woven with Venice’s past, and the splendour of Basilica San Marco, a noble reminder of the city’s Byzantine connection. The amazing history of this region moves inland as well.  Creating its own modern day legend is In A White Box, an electric, avant-garde optical boutique in Strà, 30km from Venice. Situated on the gracious Brenta Canal, and fabled for the luxurious Villa Pisani, with its Tiepolo-frescoed ceiling, the town was selected by In A White Box founder, Nico Vettore so as “to enter into a new way of conceiving optics.” This Vettore has accomplished – with a highly original boutique all in white that serves as a backdrop and art form for the 110 square metre shop.  The interior is a blank canvas, where frames become precious objects for customers to admire and try on.  You may find frames decorously strewn atop a hard-back chair that is swathed in a white sheet. The concept of “surprise” is evident in the surroundings as well as the crème de la crème of eyewear designers – including Oliver Goldsmith, Blue Magic Eye, Dita, Ic! Berlin, Orgreen, Mykita, and Belgian designer Martin Margiela.

If you are in the Venice area, take a side trip to visit this fresh and imaginative optical boutique.  The magic of Venice continues inland! JG

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www.inawhitebox.it