Opti 2014 has been an interesting show to start this new year for us, eyeglasses lovers.
The trade show took place from 10 to 12 January in Munich and saw over 24,000 visitors and about 500 exhibitors showcasing their products.
We were there to discover what’s new in the eyewear market, keeping our eyes open to spot new interesting materials, design solutions and production techniques.
Generally speaking, some of the trends we already saw last year in Mido and Silmo are consolidating and more companies are adapting to produce eyewear with materials that have just become more “trendy” for the market, which is a bit dangerous because they tend to “do the same thing”, but luckily there are some small surprises…
Also, we are glad to see that companies are showing a bit more awareness for ecofriendly and ecosustainable materials and production.
Surrounded by wood
The first big trend is wood.
In the last three years, wood have slowly but steady increased its popularity in the eyewear world: its lightness, nice feeling to the touch and infinite shades of colors and finishes are probably the main reasons why it tickled many brands to jump on the “wooden train” and craft their own variations on this beautiful natural material. Even if we still don’t see a lot of wooden frames on the face of people walking around.
Among the most interesting, we spoke with w-eye, from Italy, that showed us a stylish new collection made of wood and pearl, pretty interesting finish! Vision Wood, also from Italy, showcased us their interesting variations made of cork (flexible!) and some cork/wood hybrid models.
Among other brands using wood: Herrlicht with their 100% wood frames from Germany, Different with a nice colourful range of models from Italy, Kraa Kraa from Finland, Palens from Barcelona, Tree Spectacles, WooDone and Woo Class, all from Italy.
As you can see, there’s a lot of them woody manufacturers, and we didn’t even name them all!
Now a few pictures for your eyes… But keep scrolling, because after that there’s…
The most surprising and raising trend, however, are frames made out of natural buffalo horn.
This looks like the year of buffalo horn. A very elegant and luxurious material that we saw both in very polished frames but also in more aggressive styles when scratched and hand-refined or treated in different ways.
Last year we were really impressed by the style & quality of Rigards frames, which we think you should really check out.
Götti (Switzerland) and Rolf (Austria) showed really nice frames made out of buffalo horn. Among others… Swisshorn SIRE (Switzerland), Design Naturell (Germany), Horn-i (Germany).
Our only small concern is that with the increasing of market, demand and production, manufacturers can keep the whole thing sustainable in respect of animals and nature. When asked, companies assure us the natural horn they use is always by-product/waste material. Ok, ok. But we will keep an eye on you anyway!
Time for a gallery now!
In regarding of general style and design, we give you some hints at some of the most notable brands we spoke to:
Martin&Martin showed us their sintethic ivory-look alike material. pretty interesting.
Vue DC, we really liked their swarowski-enriched frames.
Simon Chimm and his amazing creations of paper-layered frames.
Dzimitry Samal, for his original “pixel” style frames.
Robert La Roche, clip-on pioneers, they got a really impressive advertising photographic campaign!
Dita, for their superior quality metal/acetate combination.
Sunday Somewhere, stylish australian brand.
Vinylize, eyeglasses frames made out of vinyl records.
Tom Davies, bespoke eyeglasses that you can get totally customized in shape to fit your face and nose.
Dita, for their superior quality metal acetate combination.
Funk eyewear, BlueMagicEye, great designers, some of the best people we met.
And here’s our last gallery to close our Munich Report…
That’s it. Thanks Munich for hospitality. See you next year for sure!