Euroinsights – Silmo Scene: 2023

Euroinsights - SILMO - The Optical Journal

La Rentrée in France – re-entry after the summer holidays – signals the start of the new school year and the cultural season. This time of year is also significant for the eyewear sector, as Silmo Paris opens its doors for their international event, held this year from 29 September to 2 October.

Timeless designs and trendy styles; an enticing colour palette from romantic soft tonalities to full-bodied rich interpretations; plus quality materials with more than a nod to sustainability, are all on the agenda for Autumn/Winter 2023-24.

Maison Lafont celebrates its centenary this year, and the internationally acclaimed family-owned business has partnered with Sekimoto, famed for Haute-Couture embroidery, to create an exquisitely unique frame. Thomas Lafont, Artistic Director of Maison Lafont, and Satoshi Sekimoto combined their craft and couturier skills to create an imaginative and beautiful design, embroidering pearls and embellishments onto the frame like a dress. Delicate, light, and elegant, Ouvrage is an artistic expression of French expertise with an air of Parisian Haute Couture, with all Lafont designs crafted in France.

Laffont Sekimoto
Lafont Sekimoto

Gotti Switzerland will introduce two new collections at Silmo – acetate and titanium. Glossy, highly polished acetate is superbly crafted with soft lines and a sophisticated play of colors. Fuchsia red, subtle sea grass green, and a tempting earthy caramel brown (shown) fuse light and reflection. Hulda also features a delicate filigree gold metal inlay, connected to the acetate with square rivets, illustrating the impeccable details that are a signature of Götti Switzerland designs. Lots of shine is present in the titanium collection – lightweight, yet sturdy frames with metallic color nuances.

Götti Switzerland Hulda
Hulda

More than ever, Nature – the sea, trees, and mountains are all inspirations for designers, who have a keen awareness of the catastrophic dilemma of Planet Earth. So the geology of a river carving its path through the earth with its natural lines and unique facets is the inspiration for Kirk & Kirk’s stylish Contour Collection. “Throughout the design process, we take a sculptural approach; sizing and re-shaping our unique bespoke Italian acrylic in the same way a sculptor shears a rock,” says designer Karen Kirk. The frames are handcrafted in Italy, with the temples cast in Alpaca Silver. There are five distinctive shapes, and each frame is given a personal touch, with a name after a member of the Kirk family. Featured is William in Jungle; other colors include Jet, Smoke, Admiral, Candy, and Carmine. The award-winning British brand will also launch exciting news at Silmo – the eagerly awaited Kirk & Kirk range of sunspecs.

Kirk & Kirk Contour William
William

Rolf Spectacles in the Tyrol launches intrepid new designs in the sustainable WIRE collection, accented with bold threads adding an artistic touch. The voluminous, elegantly contoured shaping in Luna provides functionality and style. Rolf also introduces Spec-Protect, an elongated chain that attaches to your new Rolf frame keeping it safe and secure. The multiple award-winning Austrian label will also present new designs in the Substance and Evolved collections, plus two fun additions to children’s frames – with child-friendly design and innovation.

Rolf Luna
Luna

Jeremy Tarian approaches eyewear design as an artist who would engage with canvas. In fact, the award-winning Frenchman does exactly that this season, with his new collection Canvas, which he describes as  “the new edition of the incredible and improbable encounters between color duos, presented in the form of a collage, like a canvas. To be enjoyed without moderation.” Pompidou is a luxurious crystal acetate frame in subtle gradations of blue with contemporary shaping and pure form evoking confidence and quiet chic.

Tarian Pompidou
Pompidou

Since her very first eyewear collection decades ago, bold, voluminous, and glamorous silhouettes have defined Emmanuelle Khanh designs. Artistic Director Eva Gaumé, who has inherited Emmanuelle’s signature spirit, expresses this legacy with the new collection of optical and sunglass designs that will be presented at Silmo. Style 5082 shimmers and glows in Lilac Glitter, an EK-exclusive color. The glitter is embedded inside the frame between two layers of crystal. Festive and stylish for autumn/winter events! Sustainable assets are also inherent in this design, as the acetate and the frame are handmade in Oyonnax, France, known for its craftsmanship in eyewear.

Emmanuelle Khanh 5082
5082

There is something about the California lifestyle of ease and casualness that appeals to people across borders and continents. SALT. Optics has a loyal following of customers who live way beyond the California coastal shores, and appreciate the emphasis on high-quality materials, and colors that reflect the beauty and blissfulness of Nature. Each color in the new collection is made from exclusive custom acetate colors that can be found only at SALT. Cascade is among the designs in sumptuous glossy acetate, shown here in Evergreen, and also available in colors inspired by the ocean and forests: Desert Fog, Matt Indigo Fog, Glacier, and Rose Oak among others.

SALT Cascade
Cascade

Model, businesswoman, TV host, mother, and eyewear designer, Ana Hickman has a distinct grasp on how women like to dress. She’s a believer that women should shine and positively express their personality. The latest eyewear collection demonstrates this with dramatic shapes –including AH 6541 – in layered acetates and temples with decorative etchings. Colors include a gradient Havana (shown) an elegant Bordeaux, and marbled Alabaster.

Ana Hickman AH 6541
AH 6541

Silmo is an oasis for innovative eyewear: 29 September – 2 October, plus it’s the ideal opportunity to connect with established brands and discover newcomers in the ever-unfolding, energizing world of eyewear. www.silmoparis.com

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Joan Grady
Euroinsights is a contributory column created and written by Joan Grady. Joan is Owner/Director of JG Creative Expressions, a solely independent editorial service supporting the eyewear sector, music, and the arts. She is fashion editor of Vision Now magazine in the UK; was originally co-founder of Eyestylist.com; and has written for international publications, including 2020Europe.