Vision Expo Announces Winners of the 2020 Talent Search

Inaugural Contest Supported by the edCFDA Celebrates Emerging Designers SpiltMilk and Tyche + Iset Eyewear

Vision Expo is pleased to announce the winners of the Vision Expo 2020 Talent Search, supported by the eyewear designers of the Council of Fashion Designers of America (edCFDA). SpiltMilk and Tyche + Iset Eyewear are the recipients of the inaugural award, which aims to identify and support emerging designers and foster their talent during the symbolic year for the eyewear industry, 2020.

“The votes are in! Seven edCFDA designers have selected two creative talents with an entrepreneurial spirit. This year’s recipients, Morganne Leigh, founder of Tyche + Iset Eyewear, and Judge Khanna, creative director and co-founder of SpiltMilk, represent the industry’s dynamic future,” said Christian Roth, co-founder and designer of Christian Roth Eyewear and one of the seven eyewear designers of the edCFDA who judged the contest. “We congratulate both designers and welcome them to our creative eyewear community.”

The winners will be introduced to the creative eyewear community during a celebratory event at Vision Expo East on Thursday, March 26 from 5 p.m.–7 p.m. in The River, one of three new neighborhoods debuting at Vision Expo East that opens one day earlier than the general exhibit hall. The reception will be open to all attendees at Vision Expo East, with special invitations extended to fellow designers and OPTImum buyers.

Additionally, each designer will receive a complimentary booth in The Springs, the already sold-out neighborhood that will showcase 22 of the newest emerging designers from around the world. Delivering a bold platform for the next generation of optical icons, The Springs serves as Vision Expo’s incubator for international emerging talent in eyewear design and vision innovation. A full list of exhibitors at The Springs can be found here.

Based in New York, SpiltMilk is inspired by the conjunction between fashion and culture. With each frame meticulously handcrafted in Japan, SpiltMilk evokes humor, luxury and sensuality. Using a combination of titanium and metal, each frame can be adjusted to fit every face like a glove. The frames range from oversized high arch brows to the exceptionally thin cat-eye frame, playing on the concept of extremes.

“SpiltMilk has focused on creating easily adjustable and malleable frames so our customer can wear what fits comfortably and defines their unique style,” said Judge Khanna, creative director and co-founder of SpiltMilk. “Each frame evokes a thread of humor with their dramatic features and enhanced silhouettes. The idea is to open the discussion on freedom of thought. We have created an inclusive and diverse platform that allows changes-makers and innovators the chance to bring their missions to the public eye.”

“If you’re not setting out to do things different or bring a breath of fresh air into the already done then there really is no point,” said Vidal Erkohen, advisor to SpiltMilk.

Designed in Los Angeles by painter and graphic designer Morganne Leigh, Tyche + Iset Eyewear features bold colors, patterns, and shapes in statement-making eyewear inspired by music, art, history, film, architecture and nature. Using premium-quality materials, each design is avant-garde, yet timeless.

“I have been on an intuitive path, guided by my dedication to design and to continuous education. It has not been easy, but I am fulfilled by my passion,” said Morganne Leigh, founder of Tyche + Iset Eyewear. “It is incredibly rewarding being acknowledged by the industry. Thank you to the edCFDA and Vision Expo for recognizing my effort and time, while affirming that I am taking steps in the right direction.”

To be eligible for consideration, designers were required to have businesses legally headquartered in the United States that were established after Jan. 1, 2016 with annual sales equal to one million or less, as well as press and social media support.

Applicants were judged by seven legendary eyewear designers of the edCFDA:

  • Shane Baum, founder and designer of Leisure Society
  • Gai Gherardi, co-founder and designer of l.a.Eyeworks
  • Blake Kuwahara, founder and creative director of Blake Kuwahara Eyewear
  • Patty Perreira, co-founder/designer of Barton Perreira
  • Jeff Press, chief creative officer of Morgenthal Frederics & Robert Marc NYC
  • Christian Roth, co-founder and designer of Christian Roth Eyewear
  • Selima Salaun, owner and designer of Selima Optique

For more information on the Vision Expo 2020 Talent Search, visit visionexpony2020.com/RSVP.

Hi-res images are available upon request.

The River, one of three new neighborhoods to debut at Vision Expo East 2020, will open on March 26, one day earlier than the general Exhibit Hall. Education at Vision Expo will take place March 26–29, 2020. The Vision Expo Exhibit Hall will be open from March 27–29, 2020.

To register for Vision Expo East 2020, visit visionexpoeast.com and be sure to follow along on all of Vision Expo’s social media channels, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and LinkedIn.

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About Vision Expo
Vision Expo East (The River: March 26– Education: March 26–29, 2020; Exhibition: March 27–29, 2020) in New York City and West (Education: September 18–21, 2020; Exhibition: September 19–21, 2020) in Las Vegas are trade-only conferences and exhibitions for eyecare and eyewear presented by co-owners Reed Exhibitions and The Vision Council. Vision Expo is the complete event for ophthalmic professionals, where eyecare meets eyewear, and education, fashion and innovation mingle. In the Vision Expo Exhibit Hall, eyecare providers can discover trends, interact with new technologies and access innovative products and services. The Vision Expo education program is driven by the profession, offering content of the highest quality and relevance to enhance overall patient care. For more information, visit VisionExpo.com and follow Vision Expo on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and LinkedIn.

About The Vision Council
Championing better vision for better lives, The Vision Council positions its members for success by promoting growth in the vision care industry through education, advocacy, research, consumer outreach, strategic relationship building and industry forums. Furthermore, through a partnership with Think About Your Eyes, The Vision Council supports consumer education around eyewear and eyecare.

About the edCFDA
The eyewear-specific designers within the Council of Fashion Designers of America (www.CFDA.com) are known collectively as the edCFDA. This sub-group of the membership aims to inspire, empower and promote awareness of eyewear design and the vitality of the optical industry through promotion, education, mentoring and collaborative initiatives.

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