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Designer Shades

William Kissel

After securing licensing agreements with such top names as Tom Ford, Roberto Cavalli, and Ferrari, Italian eyewear maker Marcolin scored a double whammy this year with the launch of two brands: the avant-garde aesthetic of French designer John Galliano and the subtle, sporty chic of the Italian-owned Tod’s.  Both eyewear collections are produced by artisan craftsman in Italy using the same high-quality metal and plastic materials for which Marcolin is known.  But the comparisons stop there.

“Galliano eyewear is extravagant and very theatrical but within reason,” explains company vice president Maurizio Marcolin, who says the men’s collection, priced from $540, combines black and colored plastic with bright gold metals in a forward but wearable way. “You wear a pair of John Galliano sunglasses to be seen,” he says. The Galliano eyewear is made up of iconic designs—some of which use fading color techniques for greater drama—inspired by the designer’s opulent couture collections.

The Tod’s collection of eyeglasses and sunglasses, starting around $350, is classic, clean, and sporty like its Italian leather goods. Some styles include subtle leather accents taken directly from skins used in the footwear and accessories. Marcolin says he uses the leather sparingly on the eyewear as accents on the front and sides.  (888.627.2654, www.marcolinusa.com)

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Photo by John Pangilinan
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