MILAN — Moncler has turned to German eyewear manufacturer Mykita for the production of two unisex sunglass models bowing this month. The styles will be available for six months only at Moncler and Mykita stores and retail for $730.
This story first appeared in the December 5, 2011 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.
“These are highly technological and innovative glasses, with a very strong design concept, yet functional, both on the ski slopes and for a daily, urban use,” Moncler chairman Remo Ruffini told WWD.
He underscored the relevance and value of technology both in Moncler and Mykita, which is the reason behind Moncler’s decision to forgo a large, established eyewear manufacturer.
Although the model harkens back to goggles worn by mountain climbers in the Fifties, Ruffini said contemporary design was a priority. In particular, the brand refers to Lino Lacedelli and Achille Compagnoni, the first men to reach the summit of K2, the second highest mountain in the world, in July 1954, who were decked out in specially made Moncler down jackets.
Ruffini said he isn’t interested in stretching Moncler’s core business with a number of product extensions, and is focused on the perception of the brand. “Our idea is to do special projects and this is one of the best ever,” he said.
Moritz Krueger, chief executive officer and creative director of Mykita, said the two companies have “a shared set of values, a rather traditionalist approach and similar brand philosophies. Both brands combine style with constant technological research in order to improve and develop products that are ahead of their time.”
Krueger said Mykita brings long-standing eyewear expertise and very high-quality, state-of the-art product that is hand-made in Germany, while Moncler brings “a very exciting and challenging brief, which aims to marry in one product the extreme demands of nature and a stylish look.”
Mylon, the material developed and patented by Mykita after years of research, is an essential element in the styles. The polyamide-based material is being used in eyewear production for the first time and is light, extremely durable and adjustable to the wearer — key priorities for Ruffini. Mylon is “perfect for sports glasses but also outstanding for comfortable sunglasses for everyday life,” said Krueger. Right after its launch, Mylon won the 2011 iF material award.
Dubbed Lino and Achille, the two models feature a swept-back frame edge. Achille, with its straight top line and broad frame is the more avant-garde model. Lino’s sweeping top line and slim frame is a modern version of glacier snow glasses.
The looks are available in black, red and blue — the latter two the colors of the first Moncler down coats in the early Sixties. The frames are fitted with mineral glass lenses from traditional Italian manufacturer Barberini.
All lenses reveal the Mykita & Moncler logo when breathed on, and feature an antifog finish on the inside of the lenses and an antiscratch outer coating. The glasses come with a padded sleeping bag style carry pouch in addition to a black case and box.
Mykita has worked with designers such as Bernhard Willhelm, but has also collaborated with artist Agathe Snow on a Guggenheim edition, among other initiatives.