Eyewear and Trends: New Frame Products



Photographed by Nedjeljko Matura

Metzler International: Jeff Banks

Under an agreement with British designer Jeff Banks, known for his innovative fashion and accessories since the ’60s, Metzler International (USA) introduces the Jeff Banks Collection of eyewear to the U.S. market. Targeted to consumers in their early 20s through their 40s, the new line contains nine metal and plastic frames. Shapes are variations on bowties, ovals and rectangles and include a three-piece mount design. Eye sizes range from 44mm to 57mm. Colors consist of shades of bronze, gold, gun, silver, blue, green, plum, rose, gray, brown and black and combinations of brown and blue and black or tortoise and amber. A sunwear collection is planned for winter 2003. PHILOSOPHY: “Like the designer, himself, Jeff Banks eyewear exudes a pioneering spirit in sophisticated design and superb workmanship. This new collection embraces modern, trend-setting style at a moderate price point,” says John Castagnetti, Metzler product development manager. PRESENTATION: Merchandising materials include a five-place display, large and small countercards and a logo block. Each frame comes with a hard case.

Lawrence: Norman Rockwell Eyewear
Under a licensing agreement with the Normal Rockwell Foundation, Lawrence Eyewear Mystique launches Norman Rockwell—Classic Americana. The new line, which consists of eight unisex styles, combines retro-inspired styling with updated technology and colorations. Features include engraved eye wires, a laser-engraved Norman Rockwell signature on each temple and nosepads with the NR logo. Shapes are variations on rectangles and ovals. One style is a three-piece mount. Frames are offered in updated antique colors. PHILOSOPHY: “Norman Rockwell personifies the values, traditions and ideals of our country. We have styled the collection and point-of-purchase materials to invoke a feeling of nostalgia and familiarity,” says Lawrence vice president Michael Mandelbaum. PRESENTATION: Merchandising materials include one- and eight-place wood displays and two countercards reflecting the art of Norman Rockwell. Each frame comes with a hard case and lens cloth.

Colors in Optics: Laura Biagiotti

Colors in Optics presents Laura Biagiotti Eyewear. The line, which takes its name from the Italian fashion designer, consists of 14 ophthalmic frames and 14 sunglasses in plastic, metal and plastic/metal combinations. Shapes range from variations on ovals and rectangles to a rimless shield. Colorations are both classic and contemporary. Design features include the Biagiotti signature straight browbar. Some styles have stone accents. PHILOSOPHY: “Laura Biagiotti believes in clean, functional, quality design. Inspired by a seductive, high-fashion, Italian life-style, the frames and sunglasses combine comfort and wearability with dynamic styling,” says Colors in Optics vice president and designer Rhona Hutton. PRESENTATION: Merchandising materials include a four-place Plexiglas display and countercards. Each frame comes with a soft or hard case.

Sàfilo USA: Sàfilo Design

Sàfilo USA has created Sàfilo Design, a state-of-the-art ophthalmic line blending technology with minimalist sophistication. Crafted in Italy, the collection, which will launch in the fourth quarter of this year, consists of six ultra lightweight modern styles for men and women and incorporates Sàfilo’s exclusive new patented Tri-Mount System. The system features a single-hole design (available in the three rimless styles) that provides superior strength and a minimalist, unobtrusive appearance. This technology also enhances lens integrity, eliminating the potential for loosening with wear. Screw-within-a screw engineering and monoblock endpieces further increase stability. Temples are made of Trogamid, a lightweight, very flexible memory material. The bridge is composed of stainless steel. The fully rimmed styles combine stainless-steel fronts with beta titanium bowed temples. Colors range from rose gold, matte black, blue, brown and slate palladium in the full frames to combinations of blue, green, brown and gray, all with rhodium, and burgundy with gold in the rimless styles PHILOSOPHY: “We hope our customers will be just as blown away by Sàfilo Design as we are,” says Dick Russo, Sàfilo USA senior vice president sales. “This collection builds on Sàfilo’s success in the three-piece mount category.” PRESENTATION: Merchandising materials include a six-place display, Plexiglas counter graphics, features/benefits card and color catalog. Each style comes with a silver-colored hard case with a magnetic closure.

Cottet Morel: Jeweled Collection

Cottet Morel USA adds a collection of jeweled eyewear to its Mademoiselle and Madem lines. Targeted to mature women, the new collection contains eight metals and two plastics, all with pearl or Swarovski crystal temple accents. Shapes are variations on ovals, rectangles and upsweeps in eye sizes ranging from 48mm to 55mm. Two styles are semi-rimless. Colors consist of shades of gold, silver, demi amber, brown, blue, rose and lavender. Temple tips are mauve, cream or pearl. Features include monoblock split hinges, spring hinges and bowed temples. PHILOSOPHY: “In designing this collection, we took our direction from what’s going on in the accessories market and incorporated it into eyewear,” says Cottet Morel CEO Tom Castiglione. “Our objective is to enhance our Madem and Mademoiselle lines with subtly sophisticated ornamentation.” PRESENTATION:Merchandising materials include an easel-back countercard and a wood block with a slot for a countercard.

Hilco: RxSports

Hilco introduces RxSports, a turnkey sports eyewear program that includes a wide range of sports-specific and multi-sports eyewear, available in both Rx and plano. Included in the RxSports series are Sniper and Zoom. Designed for the smallest kid to the largest adult, these frames are independently PECC (Protective Eyewear Certification Council) certified to meet ASTM F803 standards (the recognized standard for sports eye protection.) The styles also have a patented SprinGuard™ lens retention system that out performs the standard “V” safety bevel and a patented Lens-Lok™ center-opening eyerim for effortless glazing. PHILOSOPHY: “Our objective at Hilco is to meet the retailer and consumer need for true sports protective eyewear that has been independently certified to meet ASTM F803 standards. ASTM F803 is sports specific and requires the product be labeled accordingly.  Zoom and Sniper are clearly labeled with the sports for which they are certified.  This is the only way to assure the consumer receives the right level of protection and ends the confusion often associated with sports products in the past,” says Hilco director of product management Donna Marasco. PRESENTATION: Merchandising materials include a nine-place rotating display, available with a 12-piece order, and three-place display, offered with a five-piece order. Consumer brochures are supplied with both displays. The frames are packaged in a canvas sport case with one-ounce Fog Buster anti-fog lens cleaner and a micro-fiber cleaning cloth.

Beloptix: Photochromics

Beloptix launches a line of photochromic lens products. Included are single-vision and progressive fashion photochromics and polarized photochromics in semi-finished and finished lens blanks. Fashion photochromics are offered in polycarbonate and in indexes of 1.50, 1.56 and 1.60. Colors include aquamarine, blue, orange, purple, yellow, brown and gray. Custom colors are available. The company’s proprietary coating process also enables it to produce a polarized, photochromic lens with continuous glare protection in 1.50-index single vision, progressive and plano. Suitable for indoor use, these polarized photochromics start at a medium tint for cloudy conditions and darken according to the amount of sunlight present. Color choices consist of brown and gray for everyday use, amber for hunting and fishing, purple for golf and green for tennis and baseball. All Beloptix photochromics feature a proprietary front-surface coating that allows excellent color intensity and extremely fast changing times. PHILOSOPHY: “Our unique coating technology allows us to offer an extensive array of photochromic lens types and colors,” says Steve Wood, Beloptix president and CEO. “We’re adding a whole new dimension to fashion eyewear and sunwear with brilliant jewel-tone colors, previously unachievable in photochromics. We’re especially proud of our polarized, photochromics, which provide the glare reduction and UV protection critical to serious sports enthusiasts.