The designer already has numerous collaborations under his belt, including Off-White c/o Jimmy Choo for spring; Nike c/o Virgil Abloh the Ten, and Off-White c/o Warby Parker in July 2017, which was his first foray into the eyewear market. But the partnership with Sunglass Hut is a first for his brand in terms of size and scope.
“Sunglass Hut and Luxottica offer Off-White exposure to a wide audience that might not know about the brand,” Abloh said when asked about the reason to partner with the eyewear company. Sunglass Hut offers Abloh a reach on a global scale, including Asia, Mexico, Australia, the U.K. and the U.S.
“I’ve always thought of sunglasses as an important accessory in a fashion context. It’s a small object that can give you the nuances of a brand’s opinion on design,” Abloh said. “For me, I was looking to incorporate classic shapes from the past with a youthful modern elegance. All lenses are flat, which gives each style the same edge.”
The unisex collection, made up of three styles, are each constructed of extra-thick acetate and features a mix of retro curves, clean and angular lines, surfaces that curve inward and lenses with different color variations. They were shown on Off-White’s recent fall runway in Paris.
“The shapes are all unisex, but I wanted to play with the ladylike emotion of the runway show muse. It gave the concept for the eyewear a firm foundation, allowing the looks to be elevated by their different sunglasses pairing,” Abloh said about the pairing.
Abloh is often highly regarded as knowing what resonates with Millennials and the visuals, shot by Francesco Nazardo, feature a group of Off-White clad Millennials frolicking about and wearing their sunglasses, but strictly at night.
Asked if the two companies’ partnership will continue past the capsule, Abloh said, “In a number of ways this full rollout of this launch will dictate the future.”
The styles cost $179 and launch online as an exclusive for sunglasshut.com on March 20. Sales in stores both from Sunglass Hut and Off-White will follow from April 10. In the U.K., sales begin on March 26.