Even with a unique product it can be challenging for a small - or medium-sized business to set itself apart. Eyewear company Kirk & Kirk has come up with an unusual solution. To give its product a boost it has teamed up with Instagram star and pathologist assistant Nicole Angemi for a limited-edition line of eyewear that has raised a few eyebrows but exemplifies Kirk & Kirk’s willingness to think beyond the expected.
We live in times that place a premium on the next big thing, but there’s still some hesitancy when it comes to surprises. Do not look up Angemi’s account if you are squeamish. The American medical professional – who goes by @Mrs_Angemi on Instagram – offers a fascinating window on the gruesome injuries, diseases and decaying bodies she works with every day. Her feed has attracted a 1.4 million-strong following.
“Mrs Angemi presents a different approach to the way we think about life and death,” says Jason Kirk, one half of the husband and wife team behind the brand. “She’s also really into glasses, so we have common interests.”
Kirk & Kirk has a particular reason for wanting to stand out. “The media conversation at the moment is all about price and function and people lose sight of value,” Karen says. “We want people to reflect on the difference that quality makes.”
Handmade by artisans in France, with detailing by specialists in Birmingham, Kirk & Kirk’s frames are not cheap but Karen insists they are not luxury items: “Once you’ve got one pair of really good glasses, you understand why they’re worth having. We use materials like acrylic – which is one-third lighter than the plastics typically used – and we design our own one-of-a-kind colours.”Angemi has enthusiastically promoted the new partnership on her Instagram.