Eyewear and Trends: New Frame Products


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IT Optics: Pure by Flair

Minimalist styling with maximum comfort
Flair USA presents Pure, a new rimless eyewear collection based on the philosophy of less is more. Distributed by IT Optics, a division of Italee Optics, the frames are made completely without screws and soldering points by using a high-tech biosteel material in conjunction with an innovative patented nylon lens-glazing technique. The lenses are fixed to the temples with a nylon thread that is crossed, knotting the lenses and temples together. No special tools are needed. The knotting technique increases options for lens shapes and thickness and is suitable for multifocal lenses. Frame components are made of biosteel, a material that was produced by the Flair team after several years of research. Biosteel is nickel free, almost twice as resilient as titanium and diamond-pulled in one piece, resulting in a very smooth surface. Pure frames weigh two grams and have a profile as thin as 0.8mm. The bridge coating and temple tips are made of soft, highly elastic, hypoallergenic silicone. Frames feature saddle bridges and are also offered with 19mm nosepads. All lab work for the Pure collection is done through Lab Italee.
PHILOSOPHY: “Pure is targeted to customers with high-quality requirements, the young and young at heart, to whom maximum clarity in all situations is essential—customers who are ahead of the game,” says Flair owner Eugen Beck. “Pure is the art of understatement. It accentuates the personality of the wearer with precision and dignity.” MARKETING: An eight-place display
is offered. PRICE POINT: $$$$. AVAILABILITY: Now. For additional information, contact Flair USA, (213) 216-7277; web site:

Alain Mikli: Titanium Collection

A titan of eyewear forges titanium
Alain Mikli presents his first Titanium collection, an innovative combination of technology and design. The browbars are created from one sheet of titanium, which is stamped and cut repeatedly in a process called impact stamping. Eye rims are manufactured by crushing a spool of titanium wire between two rollers. The wire is then shaped and cut to the appropriate dimensions. Hinges and nosepads arms are also made of titanium. All of the parts are assembled by using a high-tech welding technique that shapes the curves. The frame is completed with sculpted plastic temples and hidden spring hinges. The collection consists of three styles in cat-eye and rectangular shapes and is offered in six organic colors—black, blue, chocolate, khaki, plum and red—sprayed onto the frame.

PHILOSOPHY: “The Titanium collection projects a modern image—intelligent, artistic and technologically superior,” says Cedric Moreau, Mikli regional manager. MARKETING: Counter-cards, posters and a catalog are available. PRICE POINT: $$$$$. AVAILABILITY: Now. For additional information, contact Alain Mikli, (800) 829-8032; web site: www. mikli.fr.

Charmant: Fit

Creating a perfect fit
Charmant Group USA introduces Fit, a drill-mount design system that has been developed through a collaboration of opticians and Charmant’s product development team. The lens-mounting system revolves around special plastic prongs and a hooking process (patented in Japan, patent pending in the U.S.) The prongs are inserted into the lenses and heated. Each of the components, the bridge, endpieces and temples, is stainless steel and has a loop that is hooked onto the prongs. No screws are used. The collection consists of eight men’s and women’s shapes in a wide variety of colors, three bridge sizes and two sizes each for endpieces and temples. Retailers can either order a full frame or custom build a frame by ordering individual bridge, endpiece and temple components.

PHILOSOPHY: “The Fit design eliminates problems associated with drill mounts for both wearers and opticians. The absence of screws solves the ever-annoying complaints of lens loosening and frees the lenses from tension,” says Charmant USA product manager Michele Ziss. MARKETING: Each initial purchase comes with eight display samples with AR coated demo lenses, a full set of frames with hard cases, display with built-in spare-parts trays, lens mounting kit containing all items needed for easy frame assembly, step-by-step instructions, countercard and catalog. PRICE POINT: (Individual frame) $$$. AVAILABILITY: Now. For additional information, contact Charmant Group USA (800) 645-2121; web site: www.charmant.com.

Revolution Eyewear: Innovative Alter Egos

Revolution adds plastic clips
Revolution Eyewear introduces Innovative Alter Egos, a collection of  six metal frames, each with a plastic magnetic clip with AR back-coated polycarbonate lenses. Styles are retro-inspired designs in variations on cat-eye, oval, rectangular and square shapes. Frame colors include blue/bronze, espresso, olive/brown and red. Three of the styles feature brown, gray and G-15 lenses and three have flash mirror treatments in electric blue, firestorm and sunset.
PHILOSOPHY: “Our objective is to provide a sophisticated, professional-looking frame that immediately transcends into a hot cutting-edge pair of shades,” says Revolution president Gary Martin. “These frames lend themselves to tweens, Gen Xers and Baby Boomers or anyone who wants to look sleek and sophisticated indoors and ultra sporty outdoors.” MARKETING: Each style comes with an aluminum case with a clip compartment. PRICE POINT: (Frame and clip) $$$. AVAILABILITY: Fall 2003. For additional information, contact Revolution Eyewear, (800) 986-0010.

Maui Jim: Stainless Steel Collection

Designed for active consumers demanding
durability and comfort

Maui Jim introduces Maui Jim Stainless Steel, a collection of four
rimless designs. Made of stainless steel, the frames feature a new stainless-steel spring-hinge system and saddle bridge with adjustable, non-slip, silicone nosepads. Each style is equipped with de-centered polycarbonate lenses with the company’s proprietary Clearshell scratch coating that protects both sides of the lenses. As with all Maui Jim collections, the Stainless Steel line features patented PolarizedPlus technology, which combines polarizing film with an AR coating and bi-gradient mirror to eliminate all glare elements from above, below and behind. Lenses are available in neutral gray and Maui rose. Frame styles include modifications of oval, rectangular and square shapes in six- and eight-base designs and are offered in gunmetal and metallic gloss copper.
PHILOSOPHY: “The demand for lightweight, rimless, sporty sunwear continues to increase. With the introduction of the Stainless Steel collection, Maui Jim once again displays the ability to meet the needs of consumers without sacrificing the quality or fashion for which the brand is so well known,” says Maui Jim vice president of marketing Chris Abbruzzese. MARKETING: Merchandising materials include a countercard and poster. Each style comes with a blue clamshell case. PRICE POINT: $$$$$. AVAILABILITY: Now. For additional information, contact Maui Jim, (888) 628-4546; web site: www.mauijim.com.

Value Eyewear: Vivid Division

High fashion at affordable prices
The 18-year-old Value Eyewear launches its Vivid Eyewear Division. The new division concentrates on more enhanced technology and upscale styling at moderate price points. Lines in the Vivid Division include the signature Vivid Collection, containing 27 plastic triple-laminate styles in vibrant colors; Roma, European-inspired, sleek, monel frames; Takada, a trendy group characterized by edgy eye shapes; Ultralites, a series of rimless styles featuring five different mounting systems, including screwless technology; Euro-steel, stainless-steel frames for men and women; and Retroshapes, an urban-oriented collection.
PHILOSOPHY: “The new Vivid Division gives us a way to differentiate our two base product lines: the very economical Value Eyewear and Vivid Eyewear, the highly affordable, but more technologically advanced frame line,” says Value co-president Elliot Friedman. MARKETING: Countercards are available. PRICE POINT: $. AVAILABILITY: Now. For additional information, contact Value Eyewear, (800) 631-0188; web site: www.valueeyewear.com