I have just returned from Silmo in Paris, where the halls were bursting with eyewear designers eager to tell the stories behind their collections. It was energising to discover the depth of thought that goes into creating a stand-out collection.
While several brands, like Niloca and EOE Regrind, were pursuing the creation of beautiful eyewear using the most sustainable production processes, others were focussed on drawing out the natural beauty of products like horn (Design Naturell) and marble (Mora Busoli). Robert William Morris was excited to talk about the way he has incorporated the works of the celebrated textile artist William Morris into the frames of his entirely new Gallery collection.
I think you’d agree that sharing unique stories behind collections creates a genuine connection for prospective buyers that can influence their decisions. While in Paris I wandered into a boutique and was told about the natural fibres being used to make the brand’s clothing – eucalyptus wood, bamboo etc. The shop assistant showed me the range, let me feel the difference between the fabrics and guess what… I loved his story and I bought a dress… then he upsold me with a scarf as well. I hadn’t gone in there intending to buy, I was ‘just looking’, however I have absolutely no regrets. Great product, great story… worth the price.
Silmo is a fantastic opportunity to hear directly from the designers and source new collections that create a real point of difference. It’s also an opportunity to get a perspective on the future. As Eric Lenoir, director of Silmo pointed out, “consumers want to be unique” and thanks to the multitude of independent brands available and emerging technologies, we’re increasingly able to meet this desire. Silmo’s Next area showed us the future – a world where eye care professionals really can be the clinical and creative directors of their patients’ eyewear, with technology to virtually guide patients to frames that suit their facial dimensions and then customise them by taking advantage of 3D printing.
We’ll take you through Silmo in more detail in the December issue. In the meantime, this issue is broad ranging, tapping into millennial thinking, reflecting on optometry’s recent past and taking a look at the far reaching work of OneSight. You can also take advantage of three opportunities to top up your CPD.