Finding Eyewear (and quality lenses) To Suit You

Finding frames to suit you takes a little bit of patience but, like all good things, it’s worth the effort.

Forget all of the clichés about frame shapes suiting particular face shapes. You need glasses that reflect your personality, your mood and sometimes even eyewear that projects a very specific persona.
Look at it this way, in the mid 90’s tiny rectangular glasses were de rigueur but in the early 2000’s everything went over-sized and, around the time of the financial crash, everything went vintage and little round glasses were all you could find……..but at least you had the choice of tortoise shell or black.
So what is a girl supposed to do? Your face shape does not change as quickly as glasses fashion.

There are two aspects to buying eyewear: the glasses frames and the lenses.
No sacrifices should ever be made when it comes to the medical side of your eye test.
Seek out a well-reputed, INDEPENDENT optician that will give you a thorough medical eye examination. In most countries you can expect to pay for an eye test but a good one is worth the investment. If the optician has the right equipment they can see and even photograph inside your eye and tell a lot about your general medical health, not just your eye health. Neville Kirk, my Dad, saved several lives by spotting early onset diseases, even before the amazing technology that is available today.
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Check with your optician before the test whether they will give you the prescription to take away with you, whether or not you purchase frames in their store………they should but it is always worth asking.

Now the fun bit…….most people respond to the constant marketing of the chain stores. Not surprising really given the omnipresence of Specsavers or Pearle Vision.
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Yes, they do…….

What do you see when you get there? A bunch of familiar brand names and hundreds of designer frames so “this must be the place”. Most of these branded products are licenses so the brand associated with them has simply sold the use of their name to apply to whatever fashion glasses the big box company produce. Not all of them are bad or badly made but, hey, you decide.
Then a few years ago some very capable disruptors came on the scene.
People like Warby Parker and various copycat operations ‘cut out the middle man’ to offer inexpensive eyewear online, and now in bricks and mortar stores. They make some very good looking fashion glasses for the price range and they helped secure eyewear’s position as an important purchase, so I’m not going to knock them but, you get what you pay for and at $100 – $150 that is not bad value.
Nevertheless, most people do not buy glasses that often and finding a well made frame that makes you look and feel special is money well spent. Not forgetting that the quality of the lenses that you select will not only affect your vision and well-being but also how long your glasses will last. 
What could possibly go wrong with your lenses?
Well, believe it or not, opticians can get prescriptions wrong and labs can mount the wrong lenses. On top of that, your prescription has a central point which must be correctly positioned and this can be misplaced too which can cause all sorts of issues. Even when you get past that part, coatings such as anti-reflection, will quickly crackle or be ineffectual on a poor quality lens so, my advice, no shortcuts.

Now, back to the sexy bit, choosing frames. 

Do your research. Look online for an independent optical store that carries lines that you have probably never heard of. These are the real designers.
Apart from Kirk & Kirk, look out for names like Anne et Valentin, a French company making beautiful handmade frames or ROLF who make amazing wooden frames. Theo, from Belgium, also make bold, colourful eyewear. If you see these names, you can be sure that the store will carry an interesting array of genuine eyewear designers of quality. 
Go to the store and try everything!
If you have not seen them before, then you have not tried them before and new shapes and hues can often bring surprising results. The Kirk & Kirk collection includes colours like Sunset and Violet which can look amazing.
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In this pic, the lovely Barbi Tuckerman shows how to rock Lez in Violet

Choose frames that reflect your personality. What do you want to say about yourself?
When you put the frames on, how do you feel?
Naturally they need to look good but I can probably take you round most optical stores and show you fifty frames that look good but only one will make your face light up when you put it on.
It’s been said before but glasses are your most visible and memorable article of clothing.
Do you cut corners on shoes or bags?

If you want some guidance choosing a frame please contact us on [email protected]
Tell us a little bit about yourself and what you would like your eyewear to achieve and a photo would be helpful. One of our design team will come back to you and, if we do not have anything within our collection for you, we will always recommend other people’s collections or great optical stores where you will find top optical folk with excellent frames.

Posted by Kirk & Kirk

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