By: Deirdre Carroll: Senior Editor


Gandhi, Carl Jung and Sigmund Freud, John Lennon, Iris Apfel, Ozzy Osbourne, Harry Potter, Lady Gaga, your favorite Olsen Twin and Japanese street style stars, as well as the Ready-to-Wear runway shows of Anna Sui (Fall 2012), Nicolas K, Tommy Hilfiger and Diane von Furstenberg (all Spring 2013).

In a sea of rectangles some folks just want to stand out; enter the round. Hardly a new shape, round frames nonetheless feel fresh again when done in oversized shapes, chunky acetates or sleek metals.

WEAR: (Top to bottom) The V-17 from Scott Harris Vintage by Europa International could easily be mistaken for a heritage piece with its gold metal construction, nearly perfect P-3 shape and saddle bridge, that is until you get to the comfort loaded spring hinges and acetate temple tips. The Tom Ford FT5254 from Marcolin showcases its modernity by streamlining its zyl construction, pushing the bridge up a bit and adding gooseneck nosepads for comfort, not to mention it’s on trend olive green coloring and gold accents. There is nothing that leads you to believe the Götti Switzerland Tilo frame could possibly be vintage, with its flat metal construction and Spin&Stow acetate temples, even though there is no mistaking the retro roots of its shape. The Matsuda M1005 from PM International is nearly as classic as it gets with its perfectly round lenses, center placed bridge and tortoise coloring. The proportions are just amped up the slightest bit to make this oversized frame feel modern.

WHY: The new approach to the round has liberated it from the confines of somber mental pursuits and musical iconography for a new group of tastemakers and style stars who find its retro appeal subversive and ironic. Its true beauty, however, comes from the fact that it still speaks to older generations who have long loved it for its classic design; which means the round frame speaks across demographics and mass appeal means money to the bottom line for savvy optical retailers.