Blake Kuwahara laid out what many of us are doing wrong when it comes to wearing sunglasses and prescription glasses.
And the LA-based, celeb favourite designer – who’s an optometrist by profession – should know.
So when he was in town for the Canadian launch of his new eponymous eyewear line, we knew we had to get the inside scoop as to how we could better rock our favourite facial accessory.
His latest collection, after all, was inspired by his circle of friends who straddle the creative and the business fields – and their struggle to find glasses that reflected both their lifestyle and aesthetic.
“I was trying to blend the two when I came across this antique Chinese stool encased in Plexiglas. Here was something that was familiar, but when put into a different context became completely different and new again,” says Kuwahara of the collection.
So Kuwahara applied this concept to his eyewear to create the collection’s signature “frame within a frame” design. Handcrafted in Japan, the glasses are essentially a seamless blend of two frames.
But even when rocking a pair of glasses as beautiful as these, it’s just as important to make sure you’re wearing them right:
Take More Risks
Place more value on your eyewear other than their functionality – and gents, we’re talking to you. “Men are still hesitant to really dive into fashion and establish a look; they feel comfortable in a uniform,” says Kuwahara. “They are becoming more aware of fashion options, but they don’t want to take the big leap, rather stick their big toe in fashion.”
Switch it Up
You don’t wear the same shoes every day, why are you relying on the same pair of glasses? “With fashion, sometimes glasses can be an iconic reference to people,” says Kuwahara. “So, you do have people who wear them every day, and that becomes their signature look. But that doesn’t work for everyone.” He tells us that people generally change glasses once every 2.1 years.
“Eyewear really needs to be considered a real fashion accessory – you can’t rely on one pair,” says Kuwahara. “Typically people just pick up their glasses, get used to them, and that’s what they wear. We’re trying to target people to think in terms of eyewear styling and wardrobe. Have different pairs of glasses to match your outfits – whether you’re going for a serious, fun, or sporty look. It’s about changing it up. I think if somebody has 3-4 pairs, it’s a good place to start.”
Match Your Personality
Glasses can really change your personality in a quick and easy way – either adding to it or taking away from it. “My biggest pet peeve is when people wear glasses because they want to be on trend, but it doesn’t match their personality. It’s like ‘Ok, you read the latest issue of whatever, and know that’s the hot frame, but the rest of you doesn’t even go with it,’” says Kuwahara. “You’re better off to be consistent with your overall look, then to choose something that doesn’t work with your look.”
“Ellen DeGeneres is an example of somebody who has a very defined style, and it works for her. She knows what she likes and she gravitates towards it,” says Kuwahara. “I designed a pair of aviators and she gravitated towards them, and they became her go-to. It was a very authentic marrying of the eyewear with the personality – and she wasn’t paid to wear them.”
Make Sure they Fit
Like a pair of shoes, your glasses need to fit. “Glasses can’t just look good, they have to feel good and fit well. They may be on trend in terms of the overall look of the frame but it they don’t fit well, it’s distracting and not serving its function,” says Kuwahara.
You can pick up your very own pair of Kuwahara’s extremely limited edition frames (as in, there are only 100 pairs available worldwide) for yourself.