McKenna by Lowercase NYC

When an architect, an investment analyst and a craftsman combine the result is apparently founding a quality-driven, on-trend and up-and-coming eyewear brand in the Big Apple: Lowercase NYC. Gerard Masci first realised his passion for eyewear as young as 13. Years later, he was connected with Brian Vallario and then with Ryan Langer – the three used their respective industry acquired skill sets to forge a team unmatched in artistry and individuality creating a collection of pieces that showcase exactly that.

The team’s passion for quality and style is obvious in each aspect of their small-batch product design and manufacturing; using an immersive approach they source high quality materials – such as Italian and Japanese acetate, Carl Zeiss sun lenses and German engineered hinges – and a mix of technology as well as handcrafting techniques to deliver each pair of glasses with their onerous stamp of approval. Aside from the physical materials and labour that play a part in the production of each piece, Lowercase maintain an intimate level of knowledge in each step of the journey – from design conception to send-off – a 30 step process to be exact, all done over the course of two weeks from the comfort of their amazing Brooklyn Army Terminal workshop.

Victoria wears the McKenna frame by Lowercase NYC – in Ox blood

The workshop itself is iconic and like no other – standing since 1919 it was once the largest US military supply base during the Second World War. Now, in Brooklyn – the most ambitiously creative and diverse district of NYC, it houses artists, designers and makers from all stretches of the industry – each working alongside one another and inspiring each-other to create – and yes, it is open to visit.

I have the McKenna frame (Ox blood colour) – a striking style with a subtle cat eye lens; the subtlety means they maintain the sharp finish and statement impact desired in a cat eye shape – but make it less intense and more rounded. These frames are versatile, there is no outfit that these won’t adapt to or improve. The quality is noticeable…Carl Zeiss sun lenses provide 100% UVA/UVB protection, and the barrel hinges and coated screws ensure long-lasting accident proof structure. In spite of their high-fashion, fun and delicate appearance these sunglasses block out UV rays and rest firmly and comfortably on the face; the levels of quality in each part of the design, manufacturing and production process can be seen and felt.

Lowercase have an engaging and immersive website which allows customers to experience every aspect of the brand and its collection including a step by step video on the production of the glasses within the Brooklyn Army Terminal – right up to them being delivered into the customers hands, as well some further information on some interesting initiatives the brand takes in their endeavour to be as sustainable as possible. For more information visit https://lowercasenyc.com and find the McKenna – in Ox Blood, Powder Blue or Gold Flake, at https://lowercasenyc.com/products/mckenna. A review by Victoria G. L Brunton.

The Friday edit: a piece of paradise (PFB)

Peoples from Barbados: sunglasses + glasses for beach, city or paradise holiday

The sea, the sun, and the sand….Peoples from Barbados is the first independent Caribbean eyewear label with a colour palette inspired by the natural elements of the beautiful island, the culture and the daily life.

Hartman’s joie de vivre and love for her homeland is translated into her designs with precision and passion, to create statement eyewear that is both stylish and different. The leading boutique optician on the island, she has taken careful note of what her customers love and translated those qualities into designs with a luxury feel and a lightweight build.

“My handmade frames embody the spirit of the island and my passion for this beautiful place. Every colour and texture, every combination and creative detail has been inspired by the beauty of Barbados…” Alicia Hartman, Peoples from Barbados

Style PFB-13 (above) has a delicately bevelled or sculpted surface, and a cat-eye inspired shape with soft edges combined with the signature stainless steel temples. The colour combinations include the stunning lilac tones inspired by a Bajan storm, and a deep red/tortoise combination that combines perfectly with gold stainless steel temples. Take a look at the whole collection at https://peoplesfrombarbados.com

Sustainable: plant-based at Rolf Spectacles

Part of the Substance collection announced in May 2020, the new frame designs in this modern, functional line are defined by refined contours, slim temples and strategically placed curves. The finish of the material has a natural surface texture and colours are paired down, with gentle hues that complement skin tones. Above: model wearing GILA (in stone grey).

The styles are made from a species of the Euphorbiaceae family and as a material it is both versatile and good-looking.

“The plants are grown in tropical climates without any kind of genetic engineering, they don’t compete with food crops, and they can grow very tall, very quickly: where aspruce or a beech will only grow a few centimeters taller every year, this remarkable plant will shoot up six metres in just four months, and it comes back every year,” explains company founder Roland Wolf. “This makes the material more sustainable and kinder to the environment than ever–and the perfect foundation upon which to build a new collection of glasses…meeting the current demand for more climate-considerate products.”

ROLF’s award-winning Flexlock hinge is a feature here: printed at the same time as the frame using 3D printing technology, ROLF artisans can make each of the parts all at once keep the number of external suppliers to a minimum. In addition to the high performance of the screwless and patent-pending Flexlock hinge, glasses wearers will also benefit from the flexible, natural, and skin-friendly properties of the plant-based frame.

ROLF Spectacles are available worldwide in specialist optical boutiques. The new unisex Substance collection is coming to stores soon: find out more at www.rolf-spectacles.com

The Friday edit: discover 3QUARTERS

3QUARTERS is a 5 year old sustainable brand with a concept that is as unique and creative as the designs that it makes: the upcycled materials used to make the bags are remnants of awnings used in Athens on apartment balconies.

Committed to the principles of sustainable design, and small-scale artisan production, the label works to raise awareness about slow, ethical, socially and environmentally conscious fashion, through timeless designs with a modern attitude and range of colours.

3QUARTERS upcycled collection – handcrafted with care

The awning fabrics are almost exclusively synthetic and in Greece there is no infrastructure for recycling, disposing of, or repurposing these fabrics. So far, 3QUARTERS has reclaimed and reused at least 2 tonnes of unwanted materials. The brand has a zero-waste policy and creates no waste whatsoever. All leftover fabrics, threads, and metal parts are repurposed into new products or donated to affiliated organizations.

About the brand: 3QUARTERS has a retail presence in numerous countries around the world, is a founding member of Fashion Revolution Greece and in 2019 was awarded the Common Objective Leadership Award for “having the courage to do the right thing – and doing it well. The CO leadership awards put the spotlight on businesses with great products or services – that maximise benefits to people, and minimise the impact on the environment.” In 2020, one of the co-founders of 3QUARTERS was selected as one of the judges for the 2020 European Commission Social Innovation Competition, entitled “Reimagine Fashion” and focusing on the future of the fashion industry. Find out more at https://3quarters.design/

Handmade in Brazil: Lapima’s Cora sunglasses

Bug eyes! Snug on the face, brightly toned or classic white, with a contrasting lens hue for an enhanced elegant style : the bug eye sunglasses had their heyday in the 70s and 80s and today we’re seeing them return to the catwalk – smaller, neater and all the more quirky – this look is here to stay – for ’21!

Cora in mint, by Lapima – a favourite in the Lapima SS20 collection

Lapima’s beautiful Cora – reminiscent of the ‘bug-like sunglasses’ – is created with a sharp, modern aesthetic, narrow, elongated and fitting over the eyes with a mask-like effect. The chic sculpted artisan frame by the Brazilian couture eyewear label is much like the handmade sunglasses of the 60s and 70s, with a stunning glossy, smooth finish and pointed end tips that could only have been worked and shaped by hand. The UV protective lenses come in pretty, matching or contrasting tones – a gorgeous off-white acetate is paired with a yellow lens, the mint comes with a brown gradient lens, the ultra violet has a solid green lens….another 8 colours are also available – each colour pairing offering a distinctive character and style.

Lapima packaging: the minimal white protective case is produced in leather

Lapima is a luxury sunglasses brand founded in 2016 by Gisela and Gustavo Assis. The brand works to unite cutting-edge technology with handmade craftsmanship and has proven to be a disruptive presence in Brazilian design. By overcoming traditional aesthetic limits with an avant-garde vision, the label is an invitation for individuality with geometrical lines that play with volume, light and shadow in frames carved by hand in Italian acetate. With the highest quality of materials sourced throughout Europe, Lapima sunglasses are handmade using a 28-step process at their in-house atelier in Sāo Paulo, Brazil.

The brand is available at boutiques including Moda Operandi, The Webster, Tasoni (Switzerland) and Gogosha Optique (LA), with celebrity supporters including Anne Hathaway, Cate Blanchett, Jessica Alba, Kate Bosworth, Katie Holmes, Kerry Washington, Kristen Bell, and Olivia Palermo. For more information about Lapima sunglasses, and to browse the online store visit www.lapima.com

The Friday edit: Soru Jewellery

Statement pieces – ideal for summer – which balance colour and classical details with gemstones and pearls, Soru Jewellery’s Treasures Collection is influenced by ancient Italian treasures and historic heirlooms. Made using 18ct gold plated silver with an organic finish, the line encompasses delicate necklaces with minute detailing, bold, oversized rings and finely crafted earrings with a tasteful yet opulent Sicilian infused style.

Gold features prominently in the line. The coin motifs of the Roma earrings pair beautifully with other unique pieces. The Coral style (below) is one of the highlights, with sparkling golden and opal Swarovski crystals on an 18 carat yellow gold vermeil on a sterling silver base. Across the collection, a nostalgic love for handmade quality and Italian design flair is evident along with a desire to create a decorative, yet wearable jewellery style for everyday and all occasions.

Summer style: Soru Coral ring and Roma earrings – which feature 1980s Italian lire coins and St Cristopher ‘medallino’ embellished with baroque style pearls

Soru, meaning ‘sisters’ in Sicilian, was founded by English-Sicilian sisters, Francesca Kelly and Marianna Doyle in 2013. Each Soru piece is ethically handmade in Italy or Turkey using gold plated sterling silver and semi precious gemstones. The brand has an impressive and diverse celebrity following counting HRH The Duchess of Cambridge, Chiara Ferragni, Negin Mirsalehi, Rita Ora, Jessie J and Millie Mackintosh. Soru Jewellery is available in the UK at Selfridges, Harrods, Fenwick and Harvey Nichols. Or visit the online store at www.sorujewellery.com and Instagram @sorujewellery

@searchingforchinook with @sea2see

The sustainable eyewear label by François van den Abeele is lending support @searchingforchinook to save the orcas of the Pacific Northwest

The SFC Chinook collection features 5 different styles produced in Sea2see 100% recycled marine plastic. The initiative is focused on supporting @searchingforchinook in documenting the fight for survival of the last 72 Southern resident orcas and inspiring people to take action to prevent their extinction. The project is directed by Game of Thrones actress Maisie Williams (Executive Producer), Alexandra Johnston (Executive Producer/Presenter), and Maria Nangle (Producer). Above: model Alex by Sea2see – the frames are made from recovered marine plastic. Sea2see has created its own program to collect the waste plastic from the marine environment in Europe and Africa and recycle it into raw UPSEA™ PLAST pellets which can then be turned into new colourful eyewear designs.

Games of Thrones actress Maisie Williams in Sea2see ‘Alex’ sunglasses

Find out more about the project to save the orcas at www.searchingforchinook.com or follow the team @searchingforchinook on Instagram. Find the Chinook sunglass edition at www.sea2see.org

For all face shapes: Morel 80002A sunnies

Multi-sided shapes have been increasing across product lines – the versatility of the styles for different face shapes and their stylish look which balances classic with quirky is great for men and women alike. The latest style in this genre at the French eyewear company Morel is an example of a look that gives a nod to the 1990s, minimal and well-proportioned (not oversize) with a slightly elongated octagonal eye shape and a UV protective lens – in a range of colours for all tastes – black, emerald green and pink. The frame comes from the Azur collection – a dedicated sunglass line which balances tradition and know-how with some notable technical attributes including 100% polarized lenses (by Italy’s Divel Italia) with an internal anti-reflection coating – available on all men’s and women’s models in the line for the current season. Find out more at www.morel-france.com

The Friday edit: lode.jewellery

Chris Cooper’s jewellery line brings another style of glasses accessory into the optical arena. Produced in metal materials such as silver, tarnished silver, gold finish and raw brass, the pendants are designed to keep specs safe while having a unique style as a piece of minimal jewellery. Above: Gemi pendant with an oscillating feature – available in a choice of finishes

Lode loop: model Apse with gold finish

Each metal loop design comes in different finishes and is supplied with a 60cm snake chain or black thread. The label pays special attention to the finish of the raw material and a style and quality to match favourite specs or sunnies. Find out more and visit the web store at https://lode.store

Cat-eye frames: Karyn by BOZ (JF Rey)

Cat-eye frames remain a fashionable statement in 2020 and there’s usually a style to suit us all; 1950s, elongated and upswept, or bold and modified to create dramatic head-turning sunnies.

At the independent French label BOZ, a brand synonymous with a chic and flamboyant, colourful style, the latest collection highlights Karyn, a classic cat-eye shape designed with a prominent metal brow featuring a delicate Deco twist. Above: the expressive frame silhouette we continue to love – KARYN cat’s eye by BOZ (France)

KARYN8065: the BOZ collection boasts exclusive acetate colours this season

A combination frame in metal and acetate, inspiration comes from the 1960s and superstar Marilyn Monroe. As well as the quirky silhouette reminiscent of frames she wore, a small rhinestone is featured on the temples as a tribute to the actress and her uniquely glamorous and sassy style. Find this style and more by the Marseille label at https://www.jfrey.fr/en/boz/

The Friday edit: Lisa King masks

Face masks: the new essential accessory and fastest evolving product category in fashion

Beautiful, artistic masks – to wear with statement eyewear – are now a category of their own. Many fashion companies and designers are launching their own lines, many of which have been created from existing fabrics and remnants from other lines.

London-based print artist Lisa King’s styles are upcycled from fabrics used in previous collections. Made from 100% silk and produced in London, Lisa is working closely with a family run factory; the creation of masks also meant that Lisa could continue supporting workers, following the devasting effects on small businesses from Covid-19.

Each mask has been designed for a snug fit with double layered silk and adjustable ties, with an inner pocket which can hold a disposable filter for extra protection.

The collection of masks – with designs for men and women – showcases Lisa’s signature prints which are hand printed in Worcestershire, UK and retail at £30. In support of the London based artist and offering their customer access to a conscious and considered face covering option, on July 2nd renowned British department store Fortnum & Mason launched an exclusive selection of Lisa King masks online and in store. Above: the artist modelling her own new mask design

Lisa King masks: unisex prints and colours – 100% silk

Echoing the brand’s philosophy on conscious manufacturing and sustainable efforts, Lisa King produces products on demand and creates pieces as a canvas for her art in her London based studio. Following a limited number of masks that are now available on the brand’s website, Lisa King adopts a made-to-order approach which results in waste reduction and minimises their environmental impact. In addition, Lisa King uses compostable or recyclable packaging throughout her products.

Lisa King distributes 10% of proceeds of face masks made through the brands website to The Black Curriculum – an initiative that teaches Black history all year round in schools for students aged 8-16, alongside the Emergency Designer Network – a volunteer-led collective supplementing PPE stocks for the NHS (UK) in the fight against COVID-19. For more information and to purchase online visit www.lisakinglondon.com

YM® x TVR® SERIES 2 2020 Edition Preview

Clean lines and a diamond cut finish, handmade in Japan

The collaboration between Japanese label TVR® and Yamada Mitsukazu®, the eponymous brand of the Japanese craftsman Yamada-san will see a second edition launch this September  — Yamada Mitsukasu® x TVR® SERIES 2 French Panto Diamond Cut.

Based on an iconic 1940s French panto shape, the style combines a high hinge and full-bodied base, a detail which creates a wide pantoscopic view for the wearer. Complementing the vintage shape, traditional rivets from the 1920s are added to give an elegant, old-school finish to the fronts.

Yamada Mitsukazu® x TVR® SERIES 2

Distinguished by  diamond cut edges that contribute to the clean lines, simplistic 90-degree angle with smooth curves and protruding hinges — the bold and masculine structure is balanced with wide library temples tapering to flared tips.

The upper part of the frame is derived from a square shape, meticulously hand-cut with precision in mind. The use of an 8mm front perfected using the diamond cutting technique also ensures a beautifully flat bridge surface and excellent fit of the temple. The diamond edge finishing is also another feature that’s perfected by Yamada-san himself who has over 60 years of artistry and experience of spectacle-making.

Yamada Mitsukazu® x TVR® SERIES 2 French Panto Diamond Cut is also an expression of ‘East meets West’, where traditional Japanese handcrafted artistry paired with vintage French design. Above: Yamada Mitsukazu® x TVR® SERIES 2 

Yamada Mitsukazu® x TVR® — SERIES 2 – luxurious pure gold plating on seven barrel hinges and arabesque metal detailing

The frame fronts also undergo a special polishing process that lends a certain artisanal handmade quality to each frame. “You can say that the polishing skill is based on my ‘sixth sense’ because it is entirely based on what you see and how you feel. There is a lot of attention in the detail involved in the making of this collection,” explains the master craftsman.

The Yamada Mitsukazu® x TVR® — SERIES 2 French Panto Diamond Cut 2020 edition will be available online and in selected stores in Autumn 2020.The collection comes in four individual colours — Black Diamond, Brown Beer, Olive Crystal and Yellow Crystal — vintage tones which have a true. www.tvropt.com

GIVEAWAY – @eyestylistmagazine (Instagram) today, we’re Giving Away a stunning 1 Pair of TVR 504 glasses (with plano lenses ready to be fitted with lenses at your local optician) – made in Sabae, Japan. Visit our Instagram profile today to take part.

Alisio by GOOD’S

The Architecture Collection in M49 bio acetate – a first collection from Good’s in Naples (Italy)

A fascinating appreciation of art history and references to architecture have had a consistent influence in the making of a first collection at GOOD’S, where contemporary taste, culture and a refined and researched artisan style play a part in forming something new, quality-driven and intriguing with a design style that combines vintage-infused looks with eco-friendly materials comfortably – and with auspicious know-how. This first line features seven models in six different colours, each one inspired by Neopolitan architecture and architects, after whom they are named.

Alisio in black – vintage inspired gold cello metal and M49 bio acetate

Model Alisio – inspired by Giancarlo Alisio (1930-2005) – is a tribute to the eminent university professor of the History of Architecture in Naples. Other models are the result of detailed studies of Napoli’s rich architecture and specific buildings which include the Baroque church and monastery San Gergorio Armeno, the church of Gesu Nuovo and the landmark Certosa di San Martino on the Vomero Hill.

This small creative Italian label is led by Piero Buono (Co-Founder), Walter Engle (digital director) and Francesco Maria Stazio (architect and creative director). A second line – the Book Collection, is already in the pipeline and will launch in September 2020. Find out more: www.goodseyewear.it By Clodagh Norton

The Friday edit: Nannacay

305 familes producing hope, bags, hats, and pompoms in Brazil, Peru and Ecuador

This week our Friday spot is dedicated to Nannacay, a trusted sustainable accessories label – by business woman turned creative entrepreneur, Marcia Kemp. With a passion for travel, fashion, and community work, Kemp’s idea for the brand was to create a social fashion project, with benefit to communities in Latin America through their unique craftwork and artisan skill. The brand goes as far as providing orientation and training to the craftsmen and women who work on the styles.

Kemp collaborates with the communities to create a fashion line that is brightly colored and bold, handmade with a modern style that has become well-known in international fashion circles.

“Nannacay was awarded the Eco-Age Brandmark in recognition of strategically enhancing the lives of those involved in the creation of its products. Nannacay aims to preserve culture and improve its communities’ lives through fair trade.”

Above: Aura S/S 20 collection:Brigit Bag

Nannacay – Aura s/s 2020 – Irene Clutch

With carefully  selected sustainable materials such as wool, cotton, and recycled textiles, the handmade designs in the collection including this season’s Aura series, also feature exceptional designs using macrame and crochet derived from communities in Brazil. The label also continues to research new possibilities for the introduction of pieces featuring recycled materials.

Nannacay – meaning ” sisterhood of women” in the Peruvian indigenous language Quechua – is a fashion brand born to transform peoples lives through the making of unique accessories; the bag designs have far-reaching appeal for their balance of style and simplicity, with handmade details that are playful and tasteful, always with a gentle nod to the tribal patterns and time honored crafts from where they are born. Find more designs at https://nannacay.com

 

The Friday Edit: “total relax” summer essentials

These particular products are on our wish list for the summer days ahead…

Preparing for staycations, balmy days of summer, moments of quiet relaxation, reflection or just a good read? In our Friday edit this week, we highlight three unique yet simple products that will lift your spirits and sense of well-being in the weeks to come. Above: Morpho + Luna’s silk eye pillow from “Les Irrésistibles” line

Freija pillow by Morpho + Luna – handmade in Italy
1. The “Les Irrésistibles” line of eye pillows makes use of archived fabric from past collections. As with the silk pieces at Morpho + Luna, the pillows are made in Italy from 100% pure silk and filled with meticulously cleaned wheat grown in Lancashire which helps to soothe and relax tired eyes whilst also being gentle on skin. Put a few drops of a favourite essential oil to the inner cotton pillow for added relaxation! https://morphoandluna.com
Reading glasses by Frank and Lucie – Ocean Odyssey Collection – inspired by the colours of the sea

2. For reading glasses and sunglasses, Frank and Lucie (Netherlands) have updates in their collection, which explore pretty, delicate tones of aquamarine, seaweed and natural “watery” transparencies of ‘laguna’ and ‘morning swim’. Shapes are easy and well-proportioned with panto and round designs inspired by classic spectacles of the past. The collection also features sunglasses for reading and fun new eyewear chains. Find all the latest designs at www.frankandlucie.com

SHED Soy Candles: luxurious, pure and kind to the environment – handmade in the UK

3. Alongside those moments of reading and rest, the Shed Soy Candle is a wonderfully luxurious treat with pure essential oils selected for their therapeutic and calming properties. The high quality scents will add an immediate feeling of wellbeing, while the design is unpretentious and minimal fitting perfectly with any decor – for home or work environments and a perfectly unique and elegant gift. Find our more: www.shedsoycandles.co.uk

 

Maurice by neubau

3-D printed bio-based sunglasses

Being a young and admittedly unseasoned fashion journalist – prior to working with Eyestylist, I had made my assumptions about the obvious rising ‘trend’ of environmentally friendly products across every aspect of the fashion industry. Be it in manufacturing, labour, materials – the emphasis and importance on where, why and how our clothing and accessories are made has never been so highlighted by the consumer and by the world. That being said, my expectations for ‘sustainable eyewear’ brands were minimal – if any. Sustainability and environmentalism within fashion has been an interest and niche of my own for a few years now and even so the number of sustainable eyewear brands releasing on the market came as a complete surprise – a very pleasant one at that.

neubau is known by most as the creative epicentre of Austria’s capital – similarly, with the 100% bio-based line of optical and sunglass frames ‘neubau’ eyewear – the independent lifestyle eyewear brand could very well be at the creative epicentre of progress in the sustainable eyewear segment. Their range is diverse – with anything from a minimal optical frame to a statement sunglass available.

neubau sent me the Maurice frames from their three-piece special edition collection; the other two styles are Romy and Alain. The Maurice style comes in evergreen matte/graphite or black coal matte/graphite frame/lens – I have the evergreen frame / amber lens and that particular colour pairing is beautifully different and eye-catching. The amber lenses are light on the eyes but succeed in blocking out harsh rays just as well as a black or dark grey lens – it must be noted that the lens production is equally technical in it’s own right; made of polycarbonate and providing 100% UVA/UVB UV400 protection – the optical clarity is flawless. The frame shape is sporty, sleek and lightweight with no compromise on comfort or durability. These particular sunglasses are made using neubau’s natural3D process – with an entirely natural material in a 3D printer. The material used is an oil extracted from castor oil plant seeds layered repeatedly with any excess material being made into other frames – ‘innovative’ does not do this completely circular, scientific and almost magical process justice. On top of the modern aesthetic, scientific facts and the physicality of the frame, the natural origins of the material means that the surface is basically pore-less and sits comfortably on the skin.

For further details and deeper insights into how neubau works I also thoroughly enjoyed the neubau blog, where enthralling stories, product details and updates on their See & Do Good initiative make for an engaging and informative read and explain how the sustainable focus is at the heart of this stunning collection and in neubau’s evolving story. Website and blog at www.neubau-eyewear.com  A review by Victoria G. L. Brunton

 

The Friday edit: La LOOP La Mask

Elizabeth Faraut expands accessories collection with LA LOOP mask chain

As the market floods with new styles of mask in all shapes and sizes, Los Angeles-based entrepreneur Elizabeth Faraut has added a new mask accessory combining functionality and style in her beautiful luxury accessories line. LA Mask is a hand-designed solution to today’s need to wear masks in public places and helps keep track of them, says Faraut.

The concept for LA Mask came when Faraut was faced with trips outside her home on weekly runs to the market and it was too easy to leave her mask behind. “As the LA LOOP is the simple way to hang one’s eyewear around the neck, LA Mask performs the same function for the personal health mask.”

LA Mask by LA LOOP

When worn with a mask, LA Mask can hang from one’s neck with the mask hanging against the chest so that it is at one’s fingertips ready to be put on at a moment’s notice. When the mask is removed (by unclipping the clasps) LA Mask is a necklace or can be wrapped around the wrist and worn as a bracelet. For wider social benefit, through June and July, LA Mask will be donating a percentage of the proceeds to Downtown Women’s Center (DWC), an organization in Los Angeles focusing on serving and empowering homelessness and formerly homeless women. DWC envisions a Los Angeles with every woman housed and on a path to personal stability. LA LOOP has a long history of supporting the charity.

LA Mask is handmade in Los Angeles. The Vintage masks collection by LA Mask features fabrics like Guatemalan Indigo, seersucker blue, white pin striped cotton and Italian linens. The Classic collection masks are 100% cotton blend.

Along with this functionality, LA Mask’s creator says the product is connecting consumers and community. LA Mask customers are placing gift orders, asking their purchases to be sent directly to loved ones. Faraut is handwriting gift notes with orders that read: “Stay safe and healthy. I love you.” Find out more at www.laloop.com

Titanium trends: Annie by Blackfin

Slim, pared down, and as light as can be. The new Annie model from Blackfin, the Italian independent brand, is part of the label’s Razor “retro-infused” collection created from 1mm Japanese titanium sheet and made in Italy. The eyewear producer has developed special micro mechanical processes to create the frames which, it says, have been custom-engineered to achieve a technically sound construction and finish – one of their lightest yet.

Annie by Blackfin, the Italian independent label: lightweight, timeless design

Blackfin is often ahead of the game in its launches and new high-tech titanium eyewear proposals – and even in these difficult and challenging times, the Razor concept represents a clear expression of pushing forward through innovation and bold design, for those who seek quality, technical construction and detail.

The colour palette for the Annie style ranges from the more sombre monochrome black to metallic powder pink, metallic blue, metallic Burgundy red, bright metallic violet and optic white – plenty of choice for all tastes and moods this season. Two-tone versions include white/polished silver, dark metallic bordeaux/polished silver, or Nano-Plated Champagne Light Gold combined with raspberry or bright metallic blue. Check out Blackfin’s full ranges at www.blackfin.eu

 

SoupCan Milled: new from Tavat

The new Milled concept for 2020: performance, design + innovation – in Bronze edition

Tavat Eyewear’s individualistic Soupcan design – first released in 2015, is back with the introduction of a new Milled concept – in bronze. The frames were one of a series of avantgarde eyewear innovations due to show at the cancelled Mido fair in Milan in February – but nevertheless launched and now available, heading out to leading optical stores as we write.

Model Retros – an oversized panto from Tavat’s new Milled line – in 3mm bronze

Each frame has been milled from sheets of bronze and through elaborate machining techniques unique to the company’s production in Italy, the SoupCan design has reemerged with a fresh and modern guise. Contemporary architectural shapes and elegantly balanced metallic colours fuse alongside Tavat’s precision and refinement in production and hand finishing for the ultimate contemporary artisan line. Tavat frames undergo more than 100 production and artisanal steps with meticulous quality control throughout each work cycle. The sunglasses are fitted with Melanin sun lenses to offer enhanced contrast, sharp vision and high level protection for the retina.

Model Tank in Tavat’s Milled SoupCan range

Model Tank is conceived to embody the “live larger than life, dream larger” ethos. In line with former SoupCan editions, model Tank and all other styles in this series are built with specific technical details including an anti-rotation screw (inside the watch-crown hinge) a rim-lock under the nose, and Tavat’s signature temple made from Niclafor®, a flexible, easy to adjust material that gives a lasting high quality finish. For more details about the technical properties of these new state-of-the-art Tavat designs in the SoupCan Milled edition, visit www.tavat-eyewear.com

The Friday edit: leather design / Beaumour Paris

Eyewear accessories which serve another practical purpose are unique at Beaumour. The Paris brand has tapped into convenience alongside quality, with a nicely balanced design finesse for products which carry a mix of personal essentials.

Above: the collection is produced in naturally dyed leathers. Founder Quentin Stubbe has created timeless artisan-made designs adjusted to the modern lifestyle.

Card holder glasses case at Beaumour Paris

The range includes a card holder glasses case with space for up to 4 credit cards, a compact design made of full-grain natural leather (above).

Glasses wallet at Beaumour Paris – practical and minimal

The lightweight glasses wallet has the appearance of a slim eyewear case – on the inside there is space for eyewear, credit cards and bank notes making it ideal as a way to carry around essentials without the need for several individual accessories.

The range is made from sustainable raw materials including natural tanned leathers free from chemicals and made to last. For more information and for the online shop visit https://beaumour-paris.com/pages/notre-histoire

 

The Friday edit: Orris London

Bio acetate has become a hugely desirable commodity in fashion eyewear, and optical accessory designers are also making it their own. The Orris London range is produced in a material made from wood pulp and cotton fibre. It’s kind to the skin, petroleum-free and 100% natural and biodegradable.

“Sustainability is at the core of orris London,” says founder of the label Tara Shen. “Designed in our London studio, each chain link is individually laser cut, shaped and hand-polished, with pieces taking up to seven days to finish. Long-lasting design and ‘buy better, buy less’ are mantras we live and work by.”

One of several designs, the bio-acetate Spaghetti chain (pictured above) launched in Paris for SS2020, is the most original design in the collection, with a super-sleek silhouette to fit all styles of glasses and sunglasses. Available in Liberty’s, Le Bon Marche Paris and selected independent fashion + optical stores you can also buy these designs for purchase on the Orris London website. To find our more about Tara Shen’s designs, made in the UK, visit www.orris.co.uk

Vysen model Panache

Described as a favourite within the collection, Vysen’s latest colours for the unisex Panache style are eye-catching and brave, a new spin on a design that is one of the strongest futuristic highlights in this collection by the independent label from Miami.

For quality finishing, these Vysen sunglasses, which feature a double rim and open section below the lens are made with a versatile, ultra-light, durable stainless-steel.  The new colours combine black and rose gold with a rose mirror lenses or black and silver with a silver mirror lens, both of which bring a luxury finish to the unique, avantgarde shape. Find out more about Vysen sunglasses at www.vysen.com

Friday edit: Jellyfish headpiece by JCN Fascinators

Handmade fascinators by Italian designer Claudia della Frattina / JCN Fascinators, Rome

In a world of its own accessory fantasy, Claudia della Frattina’s Seaweed collection, a concept first launched 2 years ago, explores nature and sea life in rich colorations with adornments and beads. Combining a hand blocked round base in three layers of sinamay, with sinamay strands below, each delicate thread has been hand finished with minute crystal beads, creating a dazzling almost magical light effect.

Handmade headpiece by the Rome based designer – JCN Fascinators

The double headband is trimmed with raffia and has several big AB glass beads, balancing the overall effect and reflecting rainbow colours onto other surfaces when hit by the sun.

Claudia della Frattina makes handcrafted hats, fascinators and head pieces from her atelier in Rome, Italy. Her work is featured every year in the UK at the annual X Terrace press preview  – an event for designers and innovators in millinery and hat design from around the world (For details visit: https://www.eyestylist.com/2020/03/to-the-future-and-back/). Find out more about JCN Fascinators at www.jcnfascinators.com

Celebrity style: Decadent Too by Anna-Karin Karlsson

Spotted on celebrities including Paris Hilton, Kris Jenner, and Giovanna Engelbert, Decadent Too sunglasses by the renowned Swedish designer Anna-Karin Karlsson are the model of choice for overstated jewellery style. Impossible to slip by unnoticed, these striking sunglasses are adorned with a crystal setting over lightly toned Carl Zeiss sun lenses. This extraordinary quality and finish is achieved through the craftsmanship and expertise of individuals with passion and pride in their extraordinarily accomplished metier.

The Anna-Karin Karlsson eyewear collection is created for an exclusive audience with designs produced in only 20–100 pieces worldwide. An authenticity card is provided with each frame and they are individually numbered. Find out more at www.annakarinkarlsson.com

The Friday edit: Morpho+Luna eye masks

Tired eyes and too much screen time in quarantine? Created by Cécile Gavazzi, Morpho+Luna eye masks have become our go-to accessory for relaxation and deeper, more restful sleep. These beautiful eye masks are made by hand in silk, with light padding for the ultimate comfort. Above: blush tone eye mask with a silk snow piping and elastic strap. Ideal to block light during a daytime garden siesta or for better quality relaxed sleep at night.

Made in Italy: Morpho+Luna eye mask

Morpho+Luna is a womenswear brand specialising in sleep and homewear. The name comes from the combination of a vibrant blue Morpho butterfly and a delicate white Luna moth—inspired by a rebellious baroness: an adventurer who constantly sought out a new space for her ideas, her expression, and her very being.

Deep Blue Silk Eye Mask: a limited edition silk mask from Morpho+Luna

The products are made in Italy with a careful focus on design, craftsmanship and fine quality fabrics and prints. Find out more : www.morphandluna.com

‘The Friday Edit’ at Eyestylist is a new review series of elegant accessories and lifestyle products for the weekend and beyond. Watch this space.

Fine-jewellery sunglasses: Subsolar by Falvin

Jewellery embellishments bring exceptional luxury finesse to handmade eyewear. At the Danish independent label Falvin, precious black diamonds with a chic, rare coloration provide the contemporary mood and sparkle for the new Subsolar edition, a women’s sunglass shape balancing exquisitely feminine lines and technical finishing.

Falvin Eyewear: black diamonds are a glamorous feature of the new Subsolar – shot by Henrik Adamsen

Falvin Eyewear has special expertise in luxury frames with jewellery settings. Founder and designer Birgitte Falvin seeks out unique materials for her contemporary collection which is produced exclusively in Japan. The diamond settings – assembled by a leading jeweller in Denmark, are mounted using traditional techniques to ensure a long-lasting quality. Find out more: www.falvineyewear.com

Blackfin model Lynn Haven

Tricks with titanium are part of the mastery and craftsmanship of Italian label Blackfin. The bas-relief effect of model Lynn Haven – achieved through a state-of-the-art micro mechanical  processing technique – allows for a two-tone colour scheme, in this case balancing delicate pink and blue/green. Comfort is a key to the design with a lightweight construction and several special features such as tilting nose pads, and overall the styling delivers a smart, modern, clean-cut elegance that reflects our era whilst maintaining timeless aspects popular in today’s eyewear selections. This women’s frame is also created in red/blue, silver/gold, brown/magenta and silver/black. The design is recommended if you have sensitive skin as the materials are non-toxic and bio-compatible, free from residues of nickel or other heavy metals. To find out more about Blackfin eyewear read our latest post at https://www.eyestylist.com/2020/02/brand-storytelling-blackfin-italy/ and visit www.blackfin.eu.

Accessory love: Diffuser Tokyo – Japan

The Japanese brand continues to lead the way in the production of stylish leather glasses accessories and related design pieces

Japanese accessories experts – Diffuser Tokyo – add to their collections for the coming  season with new leather cases and cords for men. The Diffuser range now includes two-tone stitched leather cords which come in khaki and yellow, orange with bronze and red with dark brown with carefully finished metal details with a ‘tarnished’ like vintage effect.

High-quality hand-finished ccessories from Japan: Diffuser Tokyo

The brand has also introduced a natural leather book mark, and the Horween leather eyewear case inspired by traditional natural leather spectacles cases with an envelope style lid, fastened with a popper. Diffuser Tokyo is now stocked worldwide in luxury optical boutiques. Find their products at high level optical stores and concept stores including Bromptons Opticians (UK), Lunettes Selection (Berlin), and Selima Optique SOHO (NYC). To purchase online visit https://diffuser-tokyo.com