TOKYO CONNECTION: Not always does vision mesh with visionary, but when eyewear maker Alain Mikli chose to collaborate with Issey Miyake’s key clothing designer, Naoki Takizawa, the result was an innovative fusion.
“Dragonfly Glasses” are inspired by the insect, which in Japan symbolizes strength and bravery, happiness and victory. Three years in the making, the Japanese-manufactured frames fold at the bridge, while temple extensions glide over the temples. The retracted frames slide into a circular plastic case in a look altogether reminiscent of its inspiration.
The six sunglass and prescription styles are made from stainless steel, titanium, grilamid and acetate, in colors including silver tones, blue, red, green and purple. The line retails from $480 to $550.
This is a license for Issey Miyake, with Alain Mikli distributing and producing the line. It has a limited distribution, and in the U.S., 45 cases of 18 pieces are available, mainly for Alain Mikli and Issey Miyake stores and select opticians.
EYES ON KORS: “I am such a sunglass addict,” said Michael Kors, waving and signing autographs at his sleek, boutique-like Vision Expo booth.
The designer gave a personal appearance at the show to launch his eyewear line. Manufactured in Japan and Italy under license by the upscale CXD division of Charmant, the line consists of sporty and glamourous sunglasses and prescription frames in colored acetate and bright, shiny metals. Aviators, his personal signature, also play a significant part.
“I am such a trunk show aficionado with ready-to-wear,” he said. “This is the best way to meet retailers and those who get to carry my glasses.”
The industry, he noted, is still new to him, and Vision Expo was one way to get an overall feel of the state of the classification.
“You need rollerblades to get through all of this,” he said.