Iconic British eyewear designers Kirk & Kirk has opened a special pop-up shop to celebrate London Design Festival. The innovative shop is part of the brand’s major expansion plans after a boom in demand following the pandemic.
The award-winning UK designers are known for distinctive eyewear shapes and iconic vibrant colors which have been worn around the world by stars including Robert Downey Jnr, Jim Parsons, Oasis, Young Thug, 50 Cent, U2, Annie Lennox, Dave Stewart, Elton John and many more.
Kirk & Kirk has an army of loyal fans who are discerning, independent, opinion formers with unique styles. Kirk & Kirk is known for No labels, and no external embellishments.
The revolutionary shop showcasing Kirk & Kirk’s distinctive style of eyewear is in Shoreditch and there will be a special event on September 9 with celebrity guests attending including TV presenter Alexis Nunes and Sigma star Cameron Edwards.
For the first time, ever Kirk & Kirk will display its entire unique collection in this one specially designed shop. The pop-up shop on Redchurch Street will allow Kirk & Kirk founders, Karen and Jason Kirk, to take guests on an adventure that weaves style, design, light, color, and individuality together, through September 29.
The shop features virtual try-on technology screens which for the first time, customers will be able to experience a live try-on, with no need for a separate app or to download a photo. Just look at the special screen and see what you would look like with the glasses on.
The unique pop-up houses the full collection in a colorful, ebullient, environment designed to transform the experience of discovering eyewear. Kirk & Kirk eyewear experts will be at the shop to help guide people to the right pair for their face shape and personality. There will also be an optician on-hand to fit your prescription lenses into your new Kirk & Kirk frames.
Kirk & Kirk frames are the only eyewear in the world to be hand-made from acrylic. This hand-made Italian material, specially formulated for this collection, is incredibly light and comfortable, and with over 100 years of optical experience, Kirk & Kirk has honed its craft to perfection.
On Tuesday, September 20, there will be an event allowing guests to sit down and talk with founders Karen and Jason. Retailers will also be invited to come and talk to the founders about why having Kirk & Kirk frames will open up a whole new dimension of loyal, passionate clientele.
Karen said: “Kirk & Kirk eyewear is not just about practicality, every second is an ever-evolving experience. It’s design and function, art and action, fashion and inspiration. Eyewear has the ability to decorate, accentuate even transform us. The transformative power of the sculpted angles feels like a kind of magic. Nothing brings us more joy than to reveal that inner confidence.”
“Glasses are a hugely important part of your wardrobe, forgetting the fact that they improve your vision. In these days of Zoom, glasses are even more important so treat them as the key fashion piece in your wardrobe. Invest in yourself. Look at the value of suits/shoes/bags/jewelry that you own because you want to give an impression about yourself and afford eyewear of the same importance.”
“Think about colors that suit your complexion, your eye color, hair color, wardrobe choices. You don’t just have one mood so buy several pairs to reflect your personality or environment: ‘quiet, professional but interesting’, ‘life and soul’, ‘confident’… you should feel it in your water more than see it in the mirror.”
Jason said: “Eyewear is about expressing your true self. You know when you have found the right pair. You look in the mirror and you feel two inches taller.
“The business has grown because the demand has increased due to what happened in the lockdown. People needed positivity and excitement wherever they could find it and when you can enjoy something that you put on every day, it becomes emotionally valuable.
“Consumers and retailers looked for ways to set themselves apart in a sea of mediocrity and limited access to ‘discovery’. Conducting an interview or a business meeting online. What do you want to say about yourself? Expressive eyewear says something about you Eg I am serious and professional but I am also fun to work with.”
Jason added: “Consumers want to invest in quality and invest in themselves. They are buying fewer articles but each of better quality and are prepared to pay more. People are not going into offices like they once did and quality eyewear has replaced some of the traditional sartorial statements like suits.
“It used to be that the only opticians that you heard about were Specsavers and Boots but social media allows us to discover independent stores and brands from all over the world and opens up huge possibilities for the consumer.”
Large expressive glasses are now in fashion. Colorful eyewear is in fashion – expressing your personality. Expression of the joy of being able to go out and socialize again has been the key to Kirk & Kirk’s success.
The demand for quality glasses rocketed during the pandemic because, in a world of Zoom and FaceTime, glasses became the visual focus of the conversation. One of the few opportunities for sartorial expression.
Kirk & Kirk grew 42 percent in the first year of the Pandemic and this year’s growth is estimated to be 30 percent. The celebrated designer brand has grown from 20 retailers in the UK in 2018 to almost 100 today.
They have opened two stores (optician clients) per week worldwide since 2019) and Kirk & Kirk is sold in 40 countries in independent opticians and invested heavily in virtual try-on technology allowing the business to stand apart from others.
They are the only brand in the world to create handmade frames from acrylic which allows the fully recyclable frames to be very light and comfortable. Kirk & Kirk also create their very own unique colors. The bespoke acrylic is sourced in Italy and took three years to develop; the frames are handmade in France.
The pop Up Shop runs September 2-29 at 81 Redchurch St, London, E2 7DJ.
ABOUT KIRK & KIRK
Founded by Jason and Karen Kirk, the husband and wife team has been in business for thirty years. The Kirk family has been in optics for over 100 years since Jason’s grandfather Sidney, and his brother Percy, started an optical business in London in 1919, just after the end of the first World War. See the entire collection on their website at KirkandKirk.com.