Monday, 1 February 2016

Lunar Eclipses And Eyes As Gems

photograph by Sylwana Zybura  

As the 2016 edition of 100% Optical approaches, I look back at one of my favourite project's, from the last edition of the fair's Royal College of Art eyewear design competition, where MA students where invited to submit their designs.

Honggang Lu's original concept for ‘Lunar Eclipse’ was a collection of adornments for the eyes in the form of a ring with a magnifying lens; this has now been developed into a collection of small sculptural objects that the wearer can interact with.

Honggang's poetic inspiration lies in the observation of different ways people position their hands near their face; the way we pull our hair behind our ears or the way we rest our face on our hand. "The method of wearing these eyewear pieces varies the interaction between the jewellery and the
wearer; as well as offering different ways of placing hands around their face and body", said Honggang.

From his first designs for the ring, he went on to create some more jewellery, like broaches and pendants to, once again connects the hand to the jewellery, to the eyewear and then the face.

photograph by Sylwana Zybura  

photograph by Sylwana Zybura  

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Monday, 28 September 2015

Percy Lau's Kepler

If you are in Paris this week be sure to check out Percy Lau's new collection called Kepler, at Showroom Romeo. More details here.

Percy has also launched a fashion film as a collaboration with award-winning actress and director - Tian Yuan. The film called Genesis, centres around a glass Mahjong gambling game and the actors feature some of Percy's past creations.

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Friday, 25 September 2015

Larke x Le Kilt

This year's Lonodn Fashion Week saw the unveiling of a new collaboration between Larke optics and Le Kilt.

'Stupid Girl', the collection's title, takes it's name from 1996 Garbage track of the same name and was accessorised with Larke's 1960s- inspired frames.

Against the backdrop of legendary live music venue, the 100 Club; playful fabric combinations allude to the youthful spirit of the collection, while the sunglasses embody the characteristic attitude of counterculture and nonconformity.
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Tuesday, 8 September 2015

All Eyes on Yaz!

Yaz has done it again. After the lip sunglasses, the hyper-creative force behind French brand Yaz Bukey lent her fertile imagination to a new collab with Linda Farrow Gallery. Mixing luxury with frivolous pop references; the result is...eye sunglasses, bien sûr!

I am sure Generation I will be much obliged ;-)

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Monday, 24 August 2015

Solid Denim

Just as every other brand is priding oneself on the Italian acetate used for their sunglasses, 
the design team at Mosevic decided to invent a new material for theirs.

Over the past four years of development, they have bought countless pairs of second hand jeans from charity shops and are looking to work with environmentally conscious suppliers, who are at the forefront of sustainable denim production and dying.

Each pair of sunglasses is made of layers of jeans fabric bonded with a special resin. Here is how they took the rich heritage of denim to the next stage!

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Wednesday, 5 August 2015

Wrapping and Tinkering

As a child Helio Ascari had a knack for tinkering with anything that could be disassembled. When he first got ahold of a bicycle, he immediately started taking it apart and figuring out how to restore and remodel it. As a tinkerer you instinctively develop a taste for exquisite design, Helio developed one for masters like Faberge, Carlo and Rembrandt Bugatti, vintage guns, swords and cars. His taste for finery inspired him to create Ascari Bicycles.

In addition to building bicycles, Helio started an experimental project with renowned vintage curator, Bob Melet from Melet Mercantile. They customised a small selection of vintage sunglasses using the “leather wrap technique” he uses on his bicycles and that his granddad had inspired,  “one day it came to my mind my grandpa, he used to make wicker baskets to sell at vineyards near our home and he would wrap leather around the handles. He was a simple man, but he always paid a lot of attention to detail, he would make everything as if he was making the most precious item, he was an artist that way and I was a willing and enthusiastic spectator.” It didn’t take long for the guys at Old Joe Brand, a Japanese brand that already had been selling Ascari Bicycles to see the sunglasses and propose a collaboration, which turned out to be a wonderful experience.

“ Looking back to move forward” – Helio believes that the essence of his creations can be found in this simple sentence. “We live a fast era, everything happens too fast, we should stop and look back to the past and bring the beauty of those glory years back to today’s date. That’s what I do, I am inspired by the sophistication and elegance of the 1930’s combining innovation, style and art to my designs.”

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Sunday, 26 July 2015

We take pleasure in looking

We all know that feeling of gazing and being gazed upon. Through a 16mm-shot, "Notes on the Gaze", Canadian filmmaker Chelsea McMullan asked herself what do women want when they gaze at other women; her question subverting the dominant male gaze of 70s European auteurs such as Godard, Fellini and Antonioni, who's male gaze wanted to possess women.

This is McMullan's conclusion, “I think I want to be other women, to feel what it would be like to change bodies; to have a different hair texture, eye color, or body shape; to see myself through the eyes of another women.”
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Wednesday, 15 July 2015

Generation I

photo Maxim Gagarin

When it comes to individual self promotion, mainly through Instagram, brands have embraced the new obsession and others based their entire aesthetic on it. Most of the long established fashion houses will throw generation-I(nstagram) a bone and design a couple of styles that will stand out in a selfie. The rest of their collection remains as bland as ever, to ensure the beads on their shareholder's abacus tally up.

Then came Fakoshima, who embraced people's desire to be visual, who buy a design, not a logo; they have the exuberance to do whatever you want, because they can. This echoes the same energy Bodymap bought into the fashion wold in the mid 80s.

Fakoshima is the nickname of the brand’s Creative Director, Konstantin Shilyaev. Each style in the collection is heavily influenced by Kontantin's background in graphic design and styling, as well as his love for Japanese culture....Instagram ready!

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