If you live in Perugia you may have had the privilege of having your glasses made by a true (and certainly rare these days!) artisan. His name is Gilberto and has been proudly making bespoke glasses for the past 60 years. He tells me that some of his customers have had their glasses made since they where little; they are now in their 20s and still have their glasses made by him! What I like about "Gli Occhiali di Gilberto", as his workshop is called, is that this is a neighbourhood service; old ladies, children, students...anyone who needs a new pair of glasses just walks in and orders a pair, like in days gone bye when people had their clothes and shoes made to measure.

Each frame he makes is truly unique and sitting down with him to discuss the design and the colours is just a pleasure. Gilberto tells me that making glasses is a very fulfilling experience, how many people can say that about their job?...So, 5 minutes after I walk into his workshop I am sold. I am going to have my very own frames made! As an eyewear designer I am lucky enough to have a collection of frames; in the morning, before I walk out the house I choose which glasses to wear. However, I have never had a custom made pair before, so I have a feeling that these are going to be memorable!

Gilberto's art is a rare combination of creativity as well as craftsmanship, he designs and creates his own new shapes but he is also happy for his customers to suggest any shape they like. You can choose a style form a selection on display (as I did, how un-designer of me!) or give Gilberto a sketch and after evaluating size and fit he will make them for you, even the craziest!

Inside Gilberto's workshop

There is a selection of gorgeous Italian acetates, and only a tiny amount available for each colour.

Gilberto's pipes

Gli Occhiali di Gilberto - Via Rizzo Luigi, 83, 06128 Perugia


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