26th June 2015 French optician Sabine Bégault-Vagner from Orléans turned to eyewear design in 2014, and hasn’t looked back. Her acetate frames and sunnies come in high volume hues, with distinctive graphic shapes – perfect for summer holidays. Colour pairings frequently include tortoise on neon purple, classic shiny crystal or shiny statement red. Flashy split combination colours on the fronts (see models be swag, be pretty and be geek) are a particularly fun option. Above: model be whaouh ! by sabine be. : a round frame shape, a square lens.
With a strong preference for Mazzucchelli acetate, Sabine has her own frame “signatures” including a round and square end pieces on each model, in matching or contrasting hues; all frames are made in France. To compliment the collection, be accessories include beautifully made summer-toned chains, cases and purses, featuring the same “signature” details to mix and match with eyewear.
Available at leading optical stores including Studio Optix, USA, Artsee Miami, Ottica Astrologo, Rome, and at sabine be, 21 Rue de la Republique, 45000 Orleans, France www.sabinebe.frCN
Leisure time and the holidays are enhanced with superb optical and sunglass designs by independent artisans. In Reviews, authentic international creators are highlighted who produce genuine handmade eyewear in natural materials including horn, wood and leather. An enthusiastic optician ignites the Boutique scene in Dijon, France, and our Designer of the Month hails from Rome. Discover the cultural significance of shoes in CITY GUIDES with a fascinating exhibition in London. Click and stay with Eyestylist for continual eyewear and accessory style alerts.
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12th May 2015It’s all about spontaneity. A drawing takes shape without me thinking about it very much. I want to be able to draw without limits.” Strook
In the world of theo eyewear nothing is impossible! The Antwerp label has announced a new collection inspired by Bruges-based artist Stefaan De Crook aka Strook – with a striking presentation of metal engraving across the frame.
Strook and theo met each other about four years ago through the platform for young designers De Invasie. Soon afterwards, Strook had a show at the theo Gallery in Antwerp and created a display window for theo-Somers Optiek (above).
The ensuing collection proposes four powerful designs inspired by one of the artist’s characteristic line drawings, linked to Antwerp: models named Zoo, Diamond, Hand and Fashion, each with a little piece of the symbol of the city in the upper left-hand corner. theo designer Bracké explains: “In order to come up with the forms for the glasses, I took inspiration from Strook’s interplay of lines. The models had been roughly sketched first, but the final result was completely different!”
Available in eight colours, and a choice of matt or glossy finish, the insides of the frames have a striking, sometimes contrasting colour scheme. All four stainless steel models can be fitted with optical or sun lenses, with a spectacular look, either way. For further information visit www.theo.be. View the video featuring the artist at https://vimeo.com/122090711 /www.strook.euCN
6th May 2015An exciting new chapter in ROLF Spectacles unfolds tomorrow – 7th May – when ROLF opens a chic little boutique in the heart of Vienna. Located in the historical Franziskanerplatz, only a few steps from The Stephansdom, ROLF’S eyewear gem features the original wooden storefront, perfect for a company that is the champion of natural materials. A cosy, friendly ambience is assured for the handcrafted speciality frames by the Austrian creators.
While at work on preparations for the boutique opening, Roland Wolf was pleasantly surprised when John Malkovich popped by (top photo) The shop is officially open for business on Friday, 8th May. Watch this space for further updates on ROLF’S latest adventure. www.rolf-spectacles.co/en/about-rolf/rolf-shopJG
24th April 2015 Red has long been a top contender in eyewear, alongside other classic shades of black, brown and tortoise. This season sees several glam interpretations that take the colour straight into the realms of out-of-the-ordinary. The Italian label Pollipo releases Style n. 596 this month, an acetate with a red pixelated effect on front and temples. www.pollipostore.com
At Anni & Anni Shades, optical frame Laura combines an asymmetrical colour pairing of violet and red – in fine dyed natural wood. Made by hand in the label’s workshop in Ohio, this frame has a wonderfully unique shape, and attractive matte finish. www.annishades.com
In the same vein, Topas by Veronika Wildgruber combines a minimal optical shape with flat top and two-tone effect where red is used under the horn-effect browline to circle the eyes. Dramatic and memorable. Wear as an optical or with sun lenses. www.veronikawildgruber.comCN
17th April 2015Slender, superbly light frames are among the cool and confident designs captivating spectacle wearers. Frames with a new perspective in colour nuances and shape bring fresh appeal to the designs. Spectacle Eyeworks in Canada blends modern and modish in the latest additions to the RETRO line with Sandra (above) in acetate with beautiful blue tonalities. “Dimension, not distraction,” says designer Mehran Baghaie. www.spec-eyeworks.com
Think Thin is the motto at Götti Switzerland. Lightness and shape perfection highlight wafer-thin frames that include Sunny in hand-polished purple acetate. Sunny especially emphasizes feminine contours with the sleek, dashing shape. www.gotti.ch
Winona by Orgreen makes a dazzling style statement in Emerald Green in a super-slender silhouette. The shape is generous in scale, but light as a feather. www.orgreenoptics.comJG
15th April 2015 Alongside the trend for metallic touches in accessories and fashion, metal frames are making a smart statement for the warmer season with sleek refined styling in evidence at the top end of the spectacle spectrum.
Veronika Wildgruber is an interior and product designer with a fascination for materials. She describes her own work as “simple and surprising”, a phrase that sums up her frames. The current collection – made entirely in Italy and France, includes metals used in unexpected ways, such as model Empty, where “empty space” defines the volume and produces a light, attractive filigree effect. www.veronikawildgruber.com/eyewear
A favourite classic themed sunglass shape this season, model Pratt by Salt Optics shows similar artistry in metal. This luxurious lust-worthy aviator – pictured in Honey Gold, is produced in Titanium/Beta Titanium in Japan and exhibits all the attention to detail and luxury finishing of a fine piece of handcrafted sunwear. Model Pratt is fitted with Polarized CR39 “Lovers Soul” Gradient lenses. Full details at www.saltoptics.comCN
13th April 2015Beautiful designs and details enrich optical frames, with a wonderful selection of styles, shapes and colours. Bold and dramatic is the theme for Ainjali Fine at Finest Seven (above), wearing Style 04 in black with a distinguished gold brow bar. www.finestseven.com
Travel is the inspiration for the elegant new Bridges Collection from Coppe & Sid. Lagoon blue acetate – Style VCE Venezia – transports the wearer to dreamy destinations, with handcrafting and luxurious details. www.eyedesignclub.com
Silhouette’s latest collection for men includes handsome frames that are ultra light – including the SPX Illusion – a true modern classic in tortoiseshell. www.silhouette.comJG
Lucia Pasin launched her stunning new collection in Milan – frames that are colourful and inspiring. Luxurious flowers blossom on cellulose acetate – an ecological raw material – with creative textures, powerful shapes, and fresh characteristics. Rose Flowers+Geometry Veruschka highlights care for details, and Pasin’s intuitive understanding for designs that are elegant, feminine and strong. “My frames are indeed for a woman who knows the pleasure of ornament,” says the Italian designer. More details at www.lupastudio.itJG
The acclaimed Mexican painter Frida Kahlo is a source of inspiration for Spectacle Eyeworks in Canada. Frida (above) comes with five different colours of Brow pieces, originally inspired by Kahlo’s quote: “Nothing is absolute, everything changes, everything moves, everything revolutionizes…” Frida represents agility and change with the varied colour “brow pieces.” www.spec-eyeworks.comJG
The Alium S 1 is the latest addition in this line of pure lightweight aluminium designs by the French eyewear design company. Impressively, the new Alium styles are 25% thinner than previous designs and each one features miniature air vents at the temple – invisible when worn, but technically exciting as there is no soldering – this creates a flex hinge that’s strong and durable. The Alium frames come in fantastic eye-popping shades as well as more conservative tones with bright inner linings. A perfect balance of design tech and modern fashionable styling, and one of our highlights at the shows this year. www.faceaface-paris.comCN
Vera Wang creations are the epitome of chic and contemporary fashion. The celebrated designer dresses an international clientele of sophisticated women who appreciate her understated styling in beautiful fabrics. Frames are also a passion for Vera Wang, and in an exclusive interview with Eyestylist, she shares her thoughts on fashion and eyewear.
“I’m always excited about eyewear – it can change the way you look; it’s like wearing a new cosmetic, and can change your whole mood. Eyewear is the biggest accessory, and eye protection is so valuable against sun levels. I’m into studying lens making and flat screen eyewear. It’s important to keep the quality going, and keep exploring lens construction. I’m bursting with ideas and excitement and fascinated with eyewear. Temples can be mixed with various materials, or take lenses used for skiing and adapt to sunglasses. It’s challenging, and competitive, but always exciting.
“Eyewear has always interested me, and I’m a hands on designer – very much involved, and I bring passion to what I do, and study what is going on in the market. I design from my heart. I’ve seen so much change – it is a staggering new world.
“A woman can express herself creatively, while protecting her eyes. Glasses give you attitude, and they make you look totally different. I design in the context of what I feel as a designer – and perhaps as an artist. I’m fascinated by it all.
“The focus on eyewear in Los Angeles is so obvious. It comes from loving sports. The vocabulary of eyewear has changed. Eyewear is a form of self-expression, and I always encourage women to express themselves, and also offer options and alternatives.
“I’m intrigued with jewelled eyewear. Diana Vreeland and Carrie Donavan (both editors and style icons at Vogue and Harper’s Bazaar at different periods) were defined by their eyewear – they saw the potential and power of eyewear.” www.kenmarkoptical.com / www.verawang.comJG