Vintage Glasses on Etsy: New Shops

November 23rd, 2010

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My last roundup of the best vintage eyewear shops on Etsy is here, but since I wrote it some excellent other players have entered the field. I would particularly like to spotlight the shop Peace Love Eyeglasses, which has some excellent quirky pairs from a variety of eras. Cat’s eye styles (which I think are poised for a major comeback, mostly thanks to Mad Men…I’m starting to see new cat’s eye pairs turning up in boutique shops) are abundant, but also the oversize/rounded “granny” styles of the 70′s and 80′s and some interestingly-shaped, off-the-beaten-track pairs. There are plenty of embellished frames, and the eyeglasses have all been well-photographed with measurements provided. Go check out this lovely shop – I know I will, since I’m due for a new pair myself.

Oversize Glasses Weren’t Always for Hipsters

May 29th, 2010

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Once again I cull content from Jezebel. This old TV commercial for Sears Optical is a gem – a parade of women wearing disconcertingly similar oversize styles.

Jezebel’s Tribute to Girls who Wear Glasses

March 22nd, 2010

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As a regular reader of Jezebel, I was delighted to see this roundup of iconic four-eyed ladies. Although perhaps I am part of the problem when it comes to the over-popularization of glasses as a fashion accessory:

There was a time — like, six years ago — when wearing big glasses was still an issue. When someone would liken you to Carrie Donovan or Anne Slater or some other kooky icon. Now, they see you and shrug — American Apparel, whatever — and turn away. Or, worse, they say, “Lisa Loeb!” And for those of us who’ve been into lenscraft for some time, it’s demoralizing. It’s enough, in fact, for me to break down and get the damn PRK.

Also, this somewhat sneering passage, devoted to people who don’t wear glasses, wearing glasses:

Has she ever pushed her specs repeatedly up her nose in an especially stuffy interview room, reached for them only to encounter the paradox of she who cannot see, cannot find her glasses? Slept on them or stepped on them? Wondered when to take them off pre-makeout? No, no, no and no. And you can tell that she and her specs are not One.

I’m a girl who wears glasses, for real – had ‘em since age eight, broken them, am perpetually on the hunt for the perfect cleaning cloth, had an ugly enormous pink pair when I was ten, and so on and so on. But I’m not opposed to eyewear-as-fashion – I don’t think my cred is under attack. In the age of contact lenses and lasers, the line between people who “need glasses” and people who don’t is blurrier than ever. And, of course, anyone seeking out vintage pairs is, at least in part, donning a costume and playing a role. But I know what she means. Me and my glasses have been through a lot together, and it stings a little to see “the lifestyle” reduced to an accessory.

My favourite in the Jezebel list? Carrie Donovan.