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Robb Design Portfolio: Fine-Grained Vision

Jill Newman

After years of honing his skills as a joiner—a craftsman who skillfully cuts and fastens wood joints without the use of adhesives or nails—German artisan Andreas Licht began creating a series of unlikely objects fashioned from wood. These curiosities ranged from large pieces, such as a wood bicycle, to delicate wooden eyewear complete with wooden hinges. To his surprise, his wooden eyeglass frames attracted immediate attention from buyers, prompting him to launch the Herrlicht collection (available at Luxuriator by Franco, 310.274.4494, www.luxuriatorcollection.com). The line features eight different models that are priced at $2,500 apiece and available in five types of wood, including walnut, maple, and pear.

"No two frames are alike, much like the rings of a tree," says Licht, who spends about 10 hours cutting, sanding, and polishing the wood sections of a single set of frames. Because of the intricacy of this work, he produces only between 200 and 250 frames per year. "The wood," he says, "has warmth, flexibility, and a unique character that can only come from something organic."

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Photo by Ted Morrison