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Eyewear Designer Profiles

Ten Things You Didn’t Know About: Barbara McReynolds




Barbara McReynolds of l.a. Eyeworks

Barbara McReynolds and Gai Gherardi, co-founders of l.a.Eyeworks, were high school friends who opened their first storefront on Melrose Avenue in 1979. For more than 35 years, the duo and their frames have embodied a playful, pioneering spirit, and they continue to inspire and influence a new generation of eyewear enthusiasts. They also count a roster of A-list celebrities and lifetime fans among those who give life to the company’s motto, “A face is like a work of art. It deserves a great frame.” — CLODAGH NORTON

This article originally appeared in the September 2015 edition of INVISION.


I remember very clearly the first conversation I had with Gai about setting up an eyewear company. We knew what we wanted to do (and not do) with our business. We even went through a lot of names in that first discussion, all of which we rejected. The only thing we were certain of was that “L.A.” had to be a part of it, and we came up with “Eyeworks” shortly after.


My favorite color is pink. It’s soft, feminine, and it smells good. (But if you ask me again tomorrow, I might just say red.)


My eyewear icons, truly, are our customers. Seeing anyone’s life transformed by great glasses — perhaps that’s more heroic than iconic, but Gai and I live for those moments. That said, I don’t think there’s anyone who’s explored the expressive potential of eyewear like Elton John. There are women who come to mind like Iris Apfel and Joy Bianchi, but I wish I could say I have a young female icon to name. Come on, ladies!


If I could, I would like to start a foundation to feed and house the poor, and I would work my ass off doing it.


I collect rocks and plants, with a particular passion for succulents from Madagascar. I also like poetry and music, and Gai and I spend as much time as we can visiting museums like the Los Angeles County Museum of Art.


I love botany, geology and psychology, but I’ve never really wanted to take a completely different path from designing eyewear and making a successful business.


Many people know that we have special love for pugs at l.a.Eyeworks. My pug Stella, who’s no longer with us, was chairman of our board and brand ambassador! I have also cared for a rescued California Desert Tortoise named Mr. Torto for more than 30 years.


A favorite destination? I don’t get there as much as I would like, but I love the Colorado River.

Huntington Gardens of Los Angeles

One of Barbara McReynolds’ favorite haunts is Pasadena’s Huntington Gardens.

I often visit the Huntington Gardens in Pasadena where I’m always taken with The Japanese Garden. I love to see the ceremonial tea house in the late afternoon light.


Before l.a.Eyeworks, I worked and trained as an optician at some of the most notable optical shops in Southern California including Rose Optical, Spec Shop and Optique Boutique. I was also a sales representative for Essilor when they introduced Varilux in the U.S.





Jump In — the Water’s Fine!

With a salute to summer’s shimmery, mermaid colors and warm weather-loving shades, Kenmark Eyewear celebrates this summer’s Aloha spirit with eyewear from Vera Wang, Kensie, Zac Posen and the Original Penguin Collection!

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Eyewear Designer Profiles

Designer Insights: David Rose




David Rose of Salt Optics

Sweat and surf have always had one thing in common. Salt. Now, they have another thing in common. David Rose of SALT. At age 10, Rose purchased his first pair of ski sunglasses. Years later, he retired from pro surfing and entered the industry that had been a lifelong love. In 2007, after working his way up through the ranks at Optical Shop of Aspen and Oliver Peoples, Rose took over design at the year-old SALT. Optics and now uses his love of nature, the beach lifestyle and simple, meaningful design, to create the finest in premium eyewear.

This article originally appeared in the April 2016 edition of INVISION.

1 I work alone but I’m quite happy whenever buyers, consumers and fellow eyewear enthusiasts want to talk shop. I feel like it opens the boundaries on how others might perceive the brand.

2 I’m influenced by nature’s pure beauty. Rich lustrous colors and natural elements help create and refine SALT.’s design aesthetic. The treasured inspiration of nature will always push me forward. The purest form of design comes from the shapes and colors nature provides us.

3 Each piece of SALT. eyewear has its own fingerprint and is finished by hand by third-generation Japanese artisans.

4 Cycling has my attention right now. It’s true freedom to roam all over and connect with the landscape. If I weren’t working in eyewear, I would love to be a pro cyclist. But I’m to old for that now.

5 Hugh Jackman is the coolest I ever saw anyone look in a pair of glasses. He wears a frame we developed with Aether Apparel that’s made for performance but with a sense of ease and sensibility to it. (See Jackman in the frame:

Styles From David Rose

The Meadows

The Meadows is a stylish, masculine frame in an aviator shape. Made of titanium/beta titanium, it features bi-color enamel tortoise platting.

KLiiK model K-548-519 eyeglasses

A flattering, soft upswept shape, the Chrissie is also crafted of titanium/ beta titanium and further refined by bi-color plating and titanium nose pads.

Evatik E-9122-915 semi-rimless eyeglasses

A vintage inspired sunglass, the Taft offers a unique combination of acetate with titanium temple and bridge details.

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Eyewear Designer Profiles

Designer Insights: Nicolas Roseillier




Nicolas Roseillier of Rem Eyewear

John Varvatos recently became the first menswear designer to win the Designer of the Year ACE Award from the Accessories Council — and Nicolas Roseillier is the man who brings Varvatos’ design sensibility to life in eyewear. Roseillier, creative director for REM Eyewear, has worked for the California company since 2009. An architect by training who actually wanted to be an optician as a teen, his first experience with the eyeglasses world came when he designed an optical trade show booth. Today, his influences include television (Mad Men was an inspiration for the mid-century motifs in the Jonathan Adler line introduced last year), music and classic automobiles. Roseillier drives an electric car, but if you want to see him smile, ask about the time he got to take a friend’s Lamborghini out for a spin. See a video of Roseillier talking about the John Varvatos and Jonathan Adler lines below. — MARISSA WALSH

This article originally appeared in the January 2016 edition of INVISION.

1 Before I attended architecture and art school, I studied engineering, specializing in micromechanics.

2 I didn’t speak a word of English when I moved to New York City from Paris 16 years ago.

3 I’ve always been a fan of the Beatles and The Rolling Stones, which is why my two sons are named Jude and Jagger.

4 My dad was in the French military and my mom is an artist. I like to think that because of them, I learned organization and creativity.

5 Most of my first-draft drawings and modifications are drawn by hand. I feel like I get a better feeling of the curves and shapes when I do it that way, and using a computer takes away from that connection.

6 When I’m not doing eyewear, my passions are still with architecture — furniture and interior design.

7 These days most of my trend and general design research is done on social media. Instagram in particular is a great medium for that.

Jonathan Adler purple JA308 eyeglasses

Rem’s Jonathan Adler line playfully echoes the popular designer’s Miami-meets-California vibe. Model JA308 features a digitally printed acetate pattern inside the temples.

John Varvatos V799 sunglasses

A favorite from the John Varvatos “Artisan” collection, model V799 (top) has perforated leather detailing reminiscent of fine driving gloves, plus a classic round silhouette and laser-engraved temples.

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Eyewear Designer Profiles

Ten Things You Didn’t Know About: Pascal Jaulent




Pascal Jaulent of Face à Face

Legs for temples from Face a Face

Temples transformed into legs with elegant shoes. (See picture at right.) Hidden messages like “So What” or “Super Chic” tucked behind the ears. These are among the many creative inspirations of Pascal Jaulent, president and art director at Face à Face, the Parisian company behind a world of colorful eyewear. Jaulent launched Face à Face with Nadine Roth in 1995 after he’d worked in big business (Nestlé and Dior) and for Lafont. Two decades later, Face à Face and its sister brand Woow continue to wow the eyewear world with adventurous and chic designs. CLODAGH NORTON

This article originally appeared in the November-December 2015 edition of INVISION.

1 When I think of my childhood, I remember the freedom of walking alone in the countryside, with all senses open to nature, the sky, and a feeling of eternity.

2 I am a Leo and I am sure I show some of the typical traits of this sign: I can be idealistic, charming, powerful, brave, honest, generous and shy at different times.

3 I hate dishonesty and meanness, and I can have problems with criticism.

4 Traveling is to me the most inspirational condition for design: a chance to open your eyes, your ears and your taste buds.

5 My favorite destinations depend on my mood and the season. Brittany, for restoring my health. The Côte d’Azur for the light, the sea and the informal lifestyle.

6 My favorite French dish is the cherry tart I remember from my childhood.

7 I love the taste and mastery behind objects: the combination of expertise and intelligence that any object carries in its smallest details, in many kinds of things — a racing car, a glove, a risotto or a whisky, for example.

8My first morning in New York many years ago, I was so excited that I almost couldn’t sleep. I went out onto the streets at 5:30 to walk and breathe and live it.

9 I always have many dreams and ambitions. I’d like to go to the opera on a regular basis, to master my Italian, exercise three times a week, to visit Jordan and Costa Rica, or go on a family trip to London.

10 I love Italy for the exquisite refinements in so many tiny details, and the United States. It’s such a stimulating place.

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