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Hot Winter Styles

If Silmo and Vision Expo West were any indication of what is in store for fall/ winter 2013-2014, then be prepared for customization and creativity.
An eclectic blend of frames mixed with a variety of materials designed to add new dimension and functionality are going to make recommending frames to patients a difficult, but fun task.
Colour remains a major factor as designers embrace vibrant primary colours and earth tones.
“Taking cues from the fashion runway, red is a huge accent colour for both men and women as is geometric prints,” said WestGroupe VP of Product Development Beverly Suliteanu.
Like clothes that are capturing geometric designs and patterns this season, so too will frames. Suliteanu said the collections at WestGroupe embody the individuality wearers are seeking while remaining trendy and functional.
“I think the new releases in all of our collections are really strong this year. We have incorporated even more vibrant colours and patterns and have pushed the envelope with regard to
styling across all brands. I think the consumer continues to be more and more demanding for interesting and fun eyewear and we are up to meeting this challenge,” she said.
Metals are also making a return to eyewear boutiques this season as many clients search for less imposing, traditional frames. But metal doesn’t have to be boring as patterns are once
again infused into the style mix.
“I think the biggest trend for 2014 is the increase in demand for metal optical frames. People are now returning back to lightweight metal frames with style,” said Richard Allen, VP of Sales for Optika. “As per our Nat and Coco NC1103 Bronze, we feature aluminum metal designs with leopard print, which makes a statement, and is very comfortable to wear.”
He notes the Mizyake Couture 4183 Black features a vintage acetate look, while being a super light weight stainless steel optical frame.
The Soho 3213 Black also feature acetates that are cut-out, showing the acetate colour below. This allows for original designs that make a unique statement.
He said eyecare providers (ECPs) should be looking at a number of factors when recommending a piece of eyewear besides just style to ensure customer satisfaction.
Allen adds Optika is always a fashionable and economic choice for ECPs to suggest.
“Optika offers the best price/value for their clients to have beautiful eyewear that can meet any budget, or craving for something original,” he said.
Ladies Only
Women remain the most discerning of eyewear purchasers. Brand savvy and fashion conscious, it is critical for ECPs to take the time to help choose a style that best reflects their clients personality.
“Vintage shapes continue to inspire, but they are brought into today with abstract, artistic and earthy patterns that give depth and dimension, and fun brow and temple treatments like logo emblems,Swarovski crystals, and sculpted metal accents,” said Ethan Goodman, President of Match Eyewear.
He added mixed materials still abound and contrasting rims and temples—in colour, texture, pattern and materials.
Women can expect to see more rich shades this season with a focus on deep saturated colours.
“Colour trends for women include rich shades of red, mauve and burgundy, along with jewel tones such as emerald, blue and amethyst,” he said. “Translucent and gradient colouring continues to be very big for winter”
A Man’s World
Men continue to play a greater role in inspiring designers this season.
“Sleek versions of Old School Clubmaster, Wayfarer and Aviator shapes continue their popularity, along with rounds and elongated geometrics,” said Goodman adding colour trends for men include vibrant blues and greens, warm mochas, chocolates and tortoise finishes in neutral earth tones, such as sand and grey.
Mixed medium is also making a frequent appearance with many designs incorporating leather, wood, buckle and stitched accents that are very hot for winter.
Goodman says the trend towards Spring 2014 will remain vintage inspired with silhouette styles taking on new proportions and angles.
Colour will remain the same, but will lighten for 2014.
He adds functionality and wearability will remain the key influencers overall as designers continue to develop new pieces to work with active lifestyles.
“The starting point is always the design, which must be beautiful and on trend, but also flattering and wearable. The design then dictates the materials, or the combination of materials,” he said. “Careful construction from the finest components ensures premium quality product. Fashion and function are absolutely vital to each other when it comes to eyewear”
Goodman adds Match Eyewear continues to offer ECPs and their clients a broad array of choices with a singular devotion to creating inspired and impeccable designs that truly work for the target consumer.
“It’s vital to know and understand the person for whom you are designing and never deviate from what they want,” he said. “Diversity also sets us apart. Our growing portfolio of fashion brands allows us to provide the perfect frame to virtually every demographic.” •

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