Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Fine eyewear your choices....

Eyeglasses, Lunettes, Lentes, Occhialli in all cultures this simple accessory eyewear dominates as a fashion necessity.

Ones look is not complete unless you have a full length image...meaning from top to bottom you have completed your style for the day.

What makes eyewear special are the many different nuances that many do not understand, in general, sales associates are not given the tools to edify clients as to what makes a collection different from a brand. Eyewear is simply not just "two circles and two sticks" as I have heard some clients describe.

Our goal is to share our appreciation of fine eyewear that all may appreciate as well as understand the differences between a "Brand" and a "Collection".

Runway piece Pierre Cardin circa 1960's
Branding 101:

Beginning in the late 1960's designers such as Pierre Cardin, Givenchy and Dior began to realize eyewear, especially sunglasses as a statement to complete a look.  Many times one off runway  sunglass pieces were designed as seen in photo above to create that unforgettable look. Clients wanted to own them and designer began to see the potential for yet another facet for their brand. While this seems logical enough and upon the inception of this movement the quality remained true to the designer who was creating the collections. However as things have evolved, eyewear manufacturers producing the products needed to assure shareholder's that profit margins were to be maintained. For the designers, a licensing fee was negotiated for attaching their brand to the eyewear.  This was a new age in eyewear and sunglass manufacturing. Different materials and manufacturing processes were introduced to the market allowing for less expensive and mass production into the market. As time progressed many consumers and fashionistas alike were only concerned of the brand not the quality nor the origin of manufacturing. This trend remains true still today.  However times are changing and consumers and fashionistas alike are becoming more aware and concerned with quality as well as origin of manufacturing.

Collection's 101:

Throughout this period of brand awareness the eyewear industry was divided into basically three sectors. You had your High End boutiques, your chain operations such as Visionworks, Lenscrafters and then the low end market that gave a no bones approach to low cost being the most important thing. This worked for many years however the cost of productions on quality goods in the 1980's and throughout the 1990's made it more difficult to maintain true to ones tapestry of carrying only unique and independent eyewear collections. Once again profit margins and turns of inventories of many independent collections became harder to manage and less desirable for some high end shop owners to carry and the lure of the brands took over. So a blending of what many shops were carrying became homogenized.  Basically one could not tell the difference between the two top tier shops
( the high end and the chains). The originality of high end eyewear boutiques became all but vanished yet not destroyed. Many collections and shops stayed true to their mission of quality and cut corners by downsizing or becoming more efficient in marketing strategies leaving the value and originality attached to their goods.

Recent trends in eyewear and sunglass fashion are much the same as apparel less interest with the idea of disposable fashion and more emphasis on classic well manufactured key pieces to ones wardrobe that will last and the investment is assured. This allows the item to become a valued piece as well as an object that is revered and cherished.
 These collection are some examples of fine eyewear manufacturing and designing.

Atticeyewear.com passion for collecting fine vintage eyewear has spanned a period of over 20 years . This being said we also have a deep appreciation for modern fine eyewear such as some of the brands listed above. Our hope is this article inspires you to "Look and See" and ask questions to find the true value of your next eyewear, sunglass, lunettes or occhialli purchase.

"Be your own Logo"
Couturier of vintage and fine eyewear

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