Reviews

Men’s glasses: Haffmans & Neumeister, ULX Collection

A “most wanted” effortless shape in Spring 21 – quintessentially 1970s

Young label Haffmans & Neumeister have risen quickly in the world of glasses design. The frames like Harrington, in stainless steel sheet, are pure, minimal and effortless – technically focused, with the smallest components and “reduced” hinge design concepts, in narrow and delicate constructions. Built on timeless classics and well-known spectacle shapes of the past, in this case a 1970s square, with an architectural expertise, the glasses are nonetheless as much a reflection of contemporary style with functionality and the kind of comfort and performance that works for every day.

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Described as “a straight shoot all the way” – Haffmans & Neumeister model Harrington in the ULX collection – pictured in champagne – a material thickness of 0.7mm is impressive

About the brand: Haffmans & Neumeister is a Berlin based brand creating frames characterised by innovative technical solutions, aesthetic and timeless design and high-quality materials. Concentrating on the essentials of design, the glasses are practical, accessible and ageless. The brand was founded in 2016 by Daniel Haffmans, brother Philipp Haffmans and Jean-Pierre Neumeister. Find out more at www.haffmansneumeister.com/about-eyewear-handmade-in-berlin

Men’s glasses

Elegantly ‘bespectacled’: men’s glasses at Lafont Paris – SS 2021

With chat about a revival of more formal attire, and a return to semi-normal life on everyone’s minds, a smarter dress code and timeless heirloom or keep-sake accessories are billed to enjoy a rise. In men’s eyewear, “lasting” design, and classical shapes have long been a part of the established “work” wardrobe. Oval, round and rectangular tend to offer a stylish and professional air when created in fine materials, and the countless renditions of these glasses ensure that matching face shape, personality and specs no longer comes down to a few limiting rules about proportions of the face. Above: model Harlow by Lafont Paris – described as a sporty panto, this delightful shape with key hole bridge is one of the new “classics” by the Parisian label: it comes in blue, green, beige – with a transparent appearance – and tortoiseshell as pictured. https://www.lafont.com/model/58903/HARLOW-4051/

Haussmann by Lafont Paris: a combination design

With larger proportions and a distinguished narrow brow line, the two-tone effect of Haussmann is both modern and elegant. Much like the tone and textural contrasts in the fabric of a suit, this style balances, fresh colours and materials with a very fine structure that offers lightness and long-term comfort. Haussmann sums up the menswear mood for Spring 21 with its “smart casual” versatility and touch of brighter colour on a brown metal base. https://www.lafont.com/product/59022/HAUSSMANN-5507/

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Windsor rims  with 1920s + 30s origins are now on-trend: Casanova by Lafont Paris – a titanium design with vintage saddle bridge

Casanova is an all-time favourite at Lafont and a permanent feature of their Reedition collection. Windsor rims of this calibre are consistently sought after for their intellectual refinement and crafted finish, and in 2021 already, this shape appears to have a new found desirability among all ages. Whether that’s because it is part of an historic cultural notion of fine dressing and vintage refinement, this style of eyewear continues to be associated with handcrafting and artisan details even now with the more widespread use of materials such as titanium or stainless steel. The Casanova model in titanium has some different colour choices, ranging from  golden to grey, silver to tortoiseshell. www.lafont.com/product/57802/CASANOVA-006W/ For more information about men’s glasses trends and our selection of fine specs and sunglasses for 2021, click on the Eyestylist bulletin: https://www.eyestylist.com/eyestylist-trend-bulletin-issue-2/

Joyful colours: Kirk & Kirk Centena collection

New hot-pink and purple tones!

Pink has always been prized in the Kirk & Kirk collections, a highlight for a window as well as a talking point to wear. Their unique acrylic material lends itself to strong, statement colours, characterised by a light-reflective translucency with a tendency to brighten skin tones. For Spring 2021, the UK label continues to put out small and frequent new releases in what Jason Kirk describes as “a new mode of working most successfully in the current climate”, and two new colours light up the ranges  – at the candy end of the colour spektrum.

An homage to the singer, colour ‘Prince’ offers a beautiful burst of fresh purple while the new Cadillac tone offers a hot even more punchy variety of pink than we’ve seen before at Kirk & Kirk, judged as just the colour to provide a lift or boost in the current climate – and particularly so in a statement shape. Above: Photographer Kathi Harman wears model Cecil in colour ‘Prince’

Esme at Kirk & Kirk: the new hot pink tone Cadillac
Miriam at Kirk & Kirk  in the new ‘Prince’ tone

This season, Kirk & Kirk have also issued a new matte “ice” tone – another variation that works well in the acrylic material – creating a soft ‘glowy’ effect that is striking and unique.

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About acrylic eyewear at Kirk & Kirk: the British company is the only eyewear label using acrylic to produce their eyewear collections in France. The benefits of the material are practical – it’s comfortable and lightweight to wear – and aesthetic – it can be produced in beautiful bright colours which will enliven and ‘accessorise’ different outfits or looks. The use of 10mm acrylic is also a benefit for those needing the more challenging and “thicker” lens prescriptions. You won’t need to compromise on style as these lenses work perfectly in these statement designs!

To find out more visit www.kirkandkirk.com – to read more about the brand on Eyestylist, visit https://www.eyestylist.com/2020/09/kaleidoscope-of-colours-kirk-kirk/

Pursuit of the senses: Padma Image

The Japanese label by Meiji Hasui adds new colours for the asymmetrical ‘Shichisan’

Simplicity. Artistry. And a delicacy of style. The Japanese label Padma Image first appeared on Eyestylist in 2014 and is gradually growing, under designer Meiji Hasui’s careful eye.  Breaking with conventions and traditional design features, the label’s new collection (available in Japan and local markets to Japan) includes one of the classic styles in the Padma Image repertoire – the asymmetrical model Shichisan, inspired by a traditional Japanese hairstyle – a Japanese ‘look’ characterised by a parting to one side. Above: Shichisan frame on model. The design was first introduced on Eyestylist in 2015: www.eyestylist.com/2015/06/eyestylist-talks-to-yuuki-hasui/

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Shichisan by Padma Image: made in Sabae

“Like an asymmetrical and natural side parting, I thought that even if the upper half of the glasses were asymmetrical, there would still be an elegant harmony with the eyebrows,” says Hasui, who has produced several asymmetrical style frames in the last years, including the Ue-Shita and the Moku-Moku, featured on Eyestylist. “We work with a small factory in Sabae which uses advanced technology and skillful craftsmen for absolute quality design.” To read more about Padma Image in English click on the link: https://www.eyestylist.com/2019/12/ue-shita-by-padma-image/   For more about the brand visit www.padmaimage.com

Jean-François Rey’s 2932

Jean-François Rey highlights a fresh, colourful style in this ladies’ design exploring architectural volumes.

Geometric, lightweight and colourful, the JF2932 has all the signature traits of a design by Jean-François Rey, the Marseille-based eyewear designer and a trend-oriented attention paid to details and distinctive design. The inventive work with the metal material is achieved through the skill and expertise of French manufacture while the creative colour pairings are  applied by hand.

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JF Rey: 2932 – a modified cat’s eye design

The JF2932 – an elegant woman’s cat eye shape, comes in several colour combinations, from gold with black and gold with blue to the vibrant red and turquoise – pictured above. Creative director and colour specialist Joelle Rey describes the colour pairings as an effect that looks as if two frames have been fused into one, in tones established through absolute creative freedom and a dedication to elegance and quality. To find out about more of the latest styles in this French design collection, launched for 2021, visit www.jfrey.fr

Lunettes Alf: style a20.01

a20.01 – alf’s artisan design inspired by American safety glasses

Lunettes Alf’s style a20.01 is a distinguished design in its acetate collection, a frame for men and women with a thick rimmed panto shape. The glasses which were inspired by the design of protective safety glasses of the 1960s has a striking bridge detail and visible pins on the frame front, a classic feature of the French artisan label.

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a20.01 Lunettes Alf – made in Normandy, France

Lunettes Alf presents spectacles which are designed in Paris and produced exclusively in Normandy, in one of the country’s most prestigious factories for handmade eyewear. The quality of the featured materials is reflected in the choice of Japanese acetate and photochromic mineral sun lenses. Precise in their desire to create timeless designs, alf is inspired by the most beautiful frame designs of past eras, with a sober and clean style – with inspiration dating back to the designs of the 20s and times when spectacles first became an accessory of style and design excellence. a20.01 is available in 6 colours including crystal (above), and elegant variations of dark and light tortoiseshell. Find out more about the brand at www.lunettes-alf.com

Eyestylist trends: Shimmer and sparkle at Seraphin

Eyestylist update: The US label Seraphin Eyewear is known for its decorative designs, with stunning embellishments and sparkling jewellery accents. Today the collection is designed by Chief Creative Officer David Duralde, OGI Eyewear, and features the new Seraphin Shimmer, a capsule adorned with dazzling crystals by Swarovski. Eyestylist observed that the company has launched a try-on option on their website to browse the frames and see how they look on your face.

Apt for the festive season, but just as desirable by lovers of luxury through the seasons, Seraphin Shimmer expresses a mood of 1920s vintage glamour and high-fashion refinement. Above: model wears Shimmer 1, a modified rectangular butterfly with artful 1920s deco line decoration and hand-inlaid crystals.

Shimmer 1 by Seraphin Eyewear – adorned with sparkling accents

The Shimmer 1 style by Seraphin, like other frames in this series, features a delicate pattern of inlaid Swarovski crystals – the effect of which is both uplifting and illuminating on the face of the wearer. The two delicate colourways are inspired by the jazz age and the rich yet subtle fashions and finery of a Scott Fitzgerald novel.

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Shimmer 1 by Seraphin Eyewear – art deco inspired eyewear for a modern trendsetter

Seraphin Eyewear has been quick to embrace new technologies in 2020 and offers virtual try-on direct from their website at  https://www.ogieyewear.com/try-shimmer

The new campaign was shot by Mike Carreiro with model Lana Zakocela and art direction by David Duralde. Seraphin Eyewear is produced by Ogi Eyewear. See the Shimmer styles at www.ogieyewear.com/seraphin-shimmer/

3D graphic statements: FACE A FACE

Stripes for the face: Bocca Pixel 3 and Bahia 3 by FACE A FACE

A few gorgeous and graphic horizontal striped frames have come to our attention this season, as the fashion trend for bold stripes – horizontal, vertical and/or zigzag, wide narrow or even classic marine styles  – really holds renewed appeal.  Whether it’s because it’s a trend that’s viewed as a safe and easy staple, the slight nod to the popular 1990s fashion era is also in its favour.

Among the stripey glasses highlights we spotted at the independent labels are modern acetate editions Bahia 3 and Pixel 3 by French label FACE A FACE – both using a translucent lined acetate with a delicate yet “digitalised” look that presents a graphic and bold illusion of movement, right across the front. Above: the Bahia3 by FACE A FACE in stripes with red detail; this chic style is also available in two other color variations, a striking blue and a bright fresh turquoise. The frame concept is inspired by Op Art and comes in four different wearable shapes.

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BOCCA Pixel 3: a one-of-a-kind visual treat – with a pixelated edging and horizontal narrow lines in transparent striped amber acetate

The Pixel 3, a style in the well known Bocca collection is the most out there of the two “striped” designs, with its extraordinary edging, in a series of steps inspired by the labyrinths of the Dutch artist, M.C. Escher. The cute end tips, once “heels” or shoes” – are now abstracted – replaced by a pixel form with tiny highlighter toned fluo details. BOCCA Pixel 3 comes in a total of 5 amazing colorways, including transparent striped amber and a very exciting graduated frozen bordeaux.

FACE A FACE glasses are available at fine independent optical retailers. To see more of our latest “favourite finds” in the FACE A FACE collections click on the link: https://www.eyestylist.com/2020/11/op-art-inspired-face-a-face-hollow/ For more details and to locate your nearest stockist, visit www.faceaface-paris.com. This feature was written by Clodagh Norton. All rights reserved.

Retro classic style: Fleye – Edward

Fusing modern materials together in one small spectacle design is an art, and one at which the finest of the independent labels excel. The modern style of the Edward frame by Fleye Copenhagen – one of Denmark’s leaders in fine frame creation – is an example of a combination in raw carbon fibre, colored wood and beta-titanium, where each material complements another, balancing lightness and comfort, alongside contemporary style and design. Above: model Edward by Fleye Copenhagen – a round eye shape with narrow beta titanium bridge and hinge detail

Close-up of model Edward by Fleye Copenhagen – 3 materials in one frame

“Each frame is the intersection of craft and art, representing our vision for modern designs, crafted to last.” Fleye Copenhagen

Part of the Elements of Art collection, a range designed as a tribute to the Thorvaldsens Museum in Copenhagen, achieved through a thorough and complex project of experimentation and creative research, this frame offers a shape suited to men and women, with exceptional refinement in the finish and the surface pattern of the wood and an interesting minimal colour palette, reproduced with skill and precision in different artistic combinations.

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For more details about the Fleye Copenhagen collection “Elements of Art” click on the link: https://www.eyestylist.com/2020/09/fleye-copenhagen-elements-of-art-2/

Animal magic: a classic print from Lafont Paris

All focus on the animal print

The extraordinary versatility of a frame as an accessory, the possibility of wearing chic animal prints or exciting shapes on the face, unusual colour combinations and fashionable designs that are as graceful and decorative as they are bold in making a statement, this is a world we continue to study and admire, across trends and seasonal expressions – in the world of fine eyewear.

For animal-inspired prints, with an air of distinguished quality and Parisian know-how, with the special attention to detail and colour typical of a fine fabric, Lafont Paris remains a remarkable leader – bringing its history and heritage into the style, and reproducing it for the modern wearer. Often playfully incorporated as a trim, as in the recent Gauloise model (100), the leopard prints are always particularly spectacular, with a level of definition and colour precision in the material that is difficult to find elsewhere.

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Gauloise by Lafont Paris – in chic black with leopard trim – the frame is also available in pink, beige, and tortoiseshell

Lafont Paris is an historic leader in French eyewear design, and all their frames are produced in the renowned spectacle-making region of the Jura. The boutiques in Paris – in Boulevard Raspail, Rue Vignon, and Rue de Sévigné represent the ongoing life and creative vitality of the Lafont collections alongside its rich archive, fully displayed at the original Rue Vignon shop, where the evolution of their exotic and chic prints can still be studied and admired today. Find out more about Lafont on Eyestylist at https://www.eyestylist.com/2020/10/lafont-paris/ Visit the Lafont Paris website at www.lafont.com

 

Eyeglass styles 2020: Paradigm

In homage to the scholarly, distinguished appeal of eyeglass styles of the 1950s, new model 20-22 by Paradigm, part of a grouping of frames from this independent label, offers eye-catching eyewear chic in interesting, contemporary colours. Above: model wears 20-22 by Paradigm. The frame is one of four new optical styles and four new sunglasses from the brand – designed to complement a wide range of faces

Paradigm 20-22, a winter launch at Kenmark Eyewear – pictured in “umber”

The smart shape of 20-22 uses a popular metal/acetate combination construction successfully incorporating vintage lines and modern colours of sky, grey, and umber.

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Paradigm sunglasses 20-61

Paradigm’s focus on comfort, wearability, flattering shapes and predominantly light translucent colours is further enhanced in this series by delightful new detailing and something unexpected, particularly in the sunglass releases where playful tricks with acetate inserts and strong shapes are beautifully articulated. Our current favourite? This reimagined aviator (20-61) in the sunglasses series (it is also offered as an optical), a style which boasts a classically shaped lens enhanced by  unusual acetate edging for a special style-driven statement. Find out more about Paradigm at https://www.eyestylist.com/2020/09/paradigm-emerging-trends-vintage-inspo/ www.kenmarkeyewear.com

Winter Sun with Oliver Goldsmith Sunglasses

Millinaire, an original shape from the OG archive, first launched in 1968

In 1968, when Millinaire was first launched designer Oliver Goldsmith was already dressing the stars and providing innovative statement eyewear for men and women with a taste for fashion and unique attention-grabbing style. They were appearing on magazine covers, were worn by the likes of Grace Kelly, Peter Sellers and Michael Caine, and famously popped up in movies such as Breakfast at Tiffany’s (on Audrey Hepburn in 1961).

Millinaire in classic black – the frame is also available in lilac or “anchor” grey

Today the Millinaire model has returned – reintroduced into the Icons Collection at OG as part of the brand’s unique Winter Sun edition for 2020/21.  The small oval shape – typical of the 1960s – is one of the classic shapes that remains integral to the evolution of the brand and its exciting history. The fine handcrafted detailing and design features such as the thick and elegant acetate temples and small subtle metal pins, on front and sides, are carefully reproduced as they were in their original form – and paired with state-of-the-art modern Zeiss sun lenses with especially light tints –  to suit the winter sun.

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The original Millinaire model from 1968 is one of over 70 pairs of glasses and sunglasses held at the V&A Museum in London – find out more at https://www.vam.ac.uk/articles/the-oliver-goldsmith-glasses-collection#slideshow=61993239512&slide=0 – To view the new Millinaire online visit https://www.olivergoldsmith.com/product/millinaire-ws/

 

RES/REI: The Essences Collection

Like a perfume, created by mixing and matching beautiful scents, the Essences collection is conceived through the balancing of transparencies and hundreds of unique colour compositions

New release: The Essences collection by Italian eyewear creators RES/REI is inspired by the magical world of perfume – with a delicate spirit and careful study of light effects with an interplay of colour. Just as fragrances are created by blending different ingredients, the eyewear in the Essences collection is the result of a careful equilibrium of design details and the balance and contrasts created through transparency and vibrant colours. Above: model Anise in dark havana, purple, green and shiny silver.

Almond by RES/REI in grey havana, red and green

With delicate shapes, embellished with metal temples in light shades, the styles – such as model Almond have complex bi- and tri- colour combinations which, when seen on the wearer appear to have a coloured line floating on the face, framing the eyes.

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Model Amber by RES/REI in dark havana, purple, green with shiny silver temples

RES/REI’s philosophy puts design, colour and attention to details at the centre of its creative direction requiring a deep and focused approach to research and innovation, to provide contemporary spectacles with a consistently surprising and artistic style and individuality. This season, the brand, whose collections are made by skilled artisans in Northern Italy has launched several new lines in addition to The Essences collection. They include the Diamonds Collection and The Galaxies Collection. Find out more about RES/REI at www.resrei.com

Colour edit: Gunn by Erker’s

This season, conversations around colour and colour directions for autumn/winter into 2021 point to a need for versatility and optimism, with tones that are pretty, soft, flattering and enjoyable to wear appearing alongside the statement-making bright tones with a more fashion focused appeal. And with that in eyewear comes a reinvention of the classics – with crystal doing well – particularly those with a gentle infusion of colour such as lilac or pink, as well as those welcome autumn/winter tones which add warmth to winter complexions and flatter natural tones of the skin.

A frame like Gunn at Erker’s, the Saint Louis framemakers – shows that the same shape – in its different colorways – adapts to different requirements. This is a cat eye frame with a classic acetate front combined with stainless steel temples offered in four colours. The burgundy (above) with gold finished temples is what we’d call an ideal classic for the winter months, a confident colour that also has the ability to flatter skin colours indoors (rainy days) and outdoors in the months when there is less natural sun light.

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Gunn by Erker’s – delicate pink infused crystal

The delicate crystal version (above) – an altogether different look – is equally sought after as a style statement this season, paired with gold metal accents which add a stylish contemporary elegance to this unpretentious easy-to-wear design. Gunn also comes in classic black, a very easy choice with a distinguished effect or a ‘patterned’ navy – in line with this year’s flattering and reassuring Classic Blue – the tone that Pantone voted in as colour of the year. For more frame styles at Erker’s, visit the brand directly online at https://erkers1879.com/products/gunn-1

Handmade in Italy: Essedue 8c

Handmade eyewear has an instant allure, and the Italian independent labels producing artisan collections of high calibre continue to show their magical creativity and commitment to tradition, even in these harshly competitive and difficult “Covid” times.

One of the new models at the Italian label Essedue – the 8c – combines the classic inspiration of a cat’s eye shape with a beautiful sinuous style derived from looking at flowers in their natural setting. Made in a substantial Mazzucchelli 1849 acetate, the small family-owned Essedue factory (located in Irpinia near Naples) has become one of Italy’s best kept secrets in eyewear production, creating designs born out of love for craftsmanship and a passion for authentic Italian elegance and  individuality in style. The frames carefully balance comfort and design, with attention to details and small inserts of colour on the frame front and temple ends, defining a special and uniquely crafted character. Each frame has a small red ‘logo design’ on the inside of the temple tip, a signature of the brand and a sign of authenticity and style finesse.

Essedue 8c – the new cat’s eye style from the Italian label

To see more new styles and visit the online shop visit www.esseduesunglasses.com. To see our top 10 frames of the month visit Eyestylist.com on Pinterest.

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Autumn/winter colour: Morgana by Tree Spectacles

As the seasons change, rich acetate colorations of magenta, cinnamon, rust, berry and maize, and a touch of pattern offer flattering looks with a wintery vibrance. At Tree Spectacles, the Acetate Bold Series by TREE Spectacles conveys both colour and a soft touch of decoration – similar to a marbling effect – with delicate transparent pastels through to intense 1970s inspired reds, browns and soft aubergine hues. The line is produced in two classic materials, eco-friendly acetate and advanced Japanese titanium.

Morgana by Tree Spectacles: colours in sync with autumn/winter trends

Tree Spectacles is a small brand from Belluno in Northern Italy an area of outstanding beauty known for its spectacle making traditions. Their versatility in working with a wide selection of fine materials and their desire to achieve artisan perfection in everything they create has helped them to evolve as one of the leading family-owned eyewear companies in the region today. www.treespectacles.com

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3D printed + steel: Gotti Switzerland Dimension LITE

Combining materials with expertise

Gotti Switzerland’s economy of style and focus on the minimal aesthetic takes a new leap forward in the Dimension LITE collection and the combination of two outstanding materials, 3D printed Polyamide and filigree stainless steel. Above: Pasha – one of the  three styles (the others are Pata and Pine) which make up the new Gotti Dimension series combining Sandvik stainless steel with a 3D printed Polyamide front – made in Switzerland.

Pata by Gotti Switzerland in colour ‘stone’ – a modern hexagon shape

The frame designs in the LITE line, such as Pata above, use a screwless hinge which attaches to the polyamide element with a click and offers stability and strength in a design that comes in a wide selection of interesting organic tones, from natural elemental colours such as stone (above) and slate, to fruit or plant-inspired hues of berry or moss.

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Gotti’s Dimension collection is a tour de force of 3D printed design and performance, with a highly studied approach to comfort as well as finish and details such as matte surfaces with a distinctive velvety look. For more details about the stylish and sleek Dimension LITE collection, visit www.gotti.ch

Gogosha: capsule collab with eyewear label

“Familiar everyday forms inspired by daily architectural details, commonly expressed through wood and ceramic, translating the inspiration to the temples….” Julia Gogosha

Dimensional, textured, graphic, and tactile. A new super limited capsule by Julia Gogosha, owner of one of the most famous optical boutiques in the world, and eyewear label Baars, introduces frames inspired by ceramics, woodturning and glassworks. The frames have a new form of expression, with temples replicating wood turning and ceramic work or glass structures, and fitting to the front with a patented magnetic connection. Just 100 pieces have been produced, with the models photographed exclusively by Jimmy Marble.

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The capsule collection presents four neutral colours, inspired by warm skin tones (coffee, hazel, dune) and a cool clay hue. The UV lenses are created in colours which harmonise with the frame tones also allowing the wearer the intimacy of eye contact during conversation.

Julia Gogosha told Eyestylist: “It’s a proud moment and a long time in the making. To contribute a design, an idea to be part of a larger conversation. To question how objects are made and what inspires us to make them in our image, referenced by other objects. Eyewear is art to be worn and every component, element and surface is an opportunity to explore a new way.” Find out more: www.gogosha.com  By Clodagh Norton All rights reserved.

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.

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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.

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“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.”

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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

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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

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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)

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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/