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Vision of Love: Romina Karamanea Sunglasses

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There’s something intriguing about a thick, chunky pair of eyeglasses. Over the years, there are quite a few personalities (usually intellectuals and/or creative sorts) whose public personas have become inextricably tied to their choice of eyeglasses: think Martin Scorsese, Woody Allen, Buddy Holly, and Lisa Loeb (Don’t hate on Lisa! You know you jammed to “Stay (I Missed You)” back in the day!). More recently, the trend towards thick frames was reignited thanks to celebrities like Kanye West (and his “Big Brother”) Jay-Z, both of whom strove to shift the cultural paradigm and transform the formerly mocked Urkel look into a desirable nerdy chic aesthetic. Bottom line: we tend to associate thick glasses (whether rounded a la Clark Kent, tortoise shell a la present day Johnny Depp, or horn-rimmed like the ones Harry wears on Mad Men) with astuteness, artistry and perspicacity.

But, as much as I love a hefty pair of glasses, I sometimes wish there were a larger assortment of shapes and styles — which is why I’ve become smitten with this new collection of sunglasses by British ready-to-wear designer Romina Karamanea. Available in sand, flesh and classic black, these handmade sunglasses feature slightly curved ridges along the lens area, and industrial-style lines along the actual fram edges, as well as jagged detailing along the arms. The effect is remarkably odd — but in the most intriguing and beautiful of ways.

Romina Karamanea Summer 2009 Sunglasses, £150. To order, e-mail sales@rominakaramanea.com or call +44 (0)208 533 9380.

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