Connect with us

A Guiding Light in LA

Gogosha Optique draws a distinctive, discerning clientele who know what they like but also want to be surprised.

mm

Published

on

Gogosha Optique, Los Angeles, CA

OWNER: Julia Gogosha; URL:gogosha.com; FOUNDED: 2008; YEAR OPENED FEATURED LOCATION: 2018; ARCHITECT AND DESIGN FIRMS: Formation Association; EMPLOYEES: 5 full-time, 1 part-time; AREA: 1,000 sq. ft.; TOP BRANDS: Jacques Marie Mage, Kuboraum, Ahlem, Masahiro Marayuma, Anne et Valentin, Rigards, Bruno Chaussignand; FACEBOOK: facebook.com/gogosha-optique-49553159522; INSTAGRAM: instagram.com/gogoshaoptique; BUILDOUT COST: $200,000


Julia Gogosha

Julia Gogosha

SINCE JULIA GOGOSHA founded Gogosha Optique in 2008, her “passion and purpose” has been to introduce a curated selection of independent, handmade eyewear brands with a focus on individualized fittings and consultations “to the bespectacled people of Los Angeles and beyond.” The current optical was opened about four years ago down the street from the original location of nine years. The local community and cost of doing business were the determining factors in selecting the current site on the city’s iconic Sunset Boulevard.

Situated in Echo Park, between Hollywood and downtown (non-Angelenos may have heard of the neighboring enclave of Silver Lake, seemingly never discussed without the word “hipster” attached), Gogosha Optique’s community, according to its owner, is “a reflection of us and we are a reflection of them. It’s totally symbiotic. Collectively we are curious, open, engaged, informed, experienced and impactful in our industries.”

Advertisement

Based on its location, approach, and products, Gogosha Optique draws a distinctive and discerning clientele whose most common trait, according to Gogosha, is their “desire to be surprised.” A dispensary with a lab and no doctor, it accepts no insurance and offers no mass-produced frame lines, with its top brands at the moment being Jacques Marie Mage, Ahlem and Kuboraum.

From the BAARS x GOGOSHA collab.

From the BAARS x GOGOSHA collab.

Gogosha and her team prefer to think of themselves as guides, giving the client the experience they want “rather than the one we want them to have.” Described by Gogosha as a “modular Tetris cathedral,” the distinctive indoor-outdoor space — customers enter through a covered patio — was inspired in part by American conceptual and minimalist artist Sol LeWitt and the geometric shapes and patterns of the early 20th-century Dutch art movement De Stijl. Says Gogosha, “Every design element is [intended] to elevate the client experience.” A perfect example of this is Gogosha Optique’s take on the classic service cart. These “futuristic vanity pods” emerged as part of the team’s reimagining of how best to service clients post-pandemic. “All of our personal spaces will grow and we no longer sit 20 inches from each other. They were inspired by a re-watching of Earth Girls Are Easy during the early COVID days.”

Advertisement

The optical moved to an appointment-based system in early 2020 and this remains in place. “Clients can choose to work with us virtually from the comfort of home or on our patio at the … pods.” Through its try-at-home and online video consult services, Gogosha Optique found a way to create an experience “where the client’s needs are met under the different variables we’re all currently living,” says Gogosha. “We’re quick to adapt and follow our intuition and instincts along with a multilayered net to catch anything that could fall through the cracks.” The service was partly a response to the need for distancing, but also caters to a spike in demand among “visible clients” to be styled for on-camera work in a world in which first impressions are increasingly made via Zoom.

The boutique’s digital presence is similarly responsive, telling its story not only through visuals and essays, but also interactive elements. “Through our site the client can be as passive or engaged as they want to be.” Gogosha offers a simple summing up of her marketing effort: “It’s honest.”

Optician Jonathen on a virtual fitting consult at one of Gogosha Optique’s ‘futuristic vanity pods’.

Optician Jonathen on a virtual fitting consult at one of Gogosha Optique’s ‘futuristic vanity pods’.

Each member of Gogosha’s team brings their own particular strength, and all love being opticians, solving problems and “connecting … with people through these objects of vision,” she says. “We are comfortably ourselves so the client feels comfortable being exactly who they are.”

Gogosha Optique reflects its owner’s belief in the value of following one’s own compass rather than looking to what others are doing, “Informed by the past, creating an elevating experience as we usher in the future.”

Advertisement

Five Cool Things About Gogosha Optique

1. ONE OF A KIND. Gogosha Optique custom dyes frames for clients looking for something truly individual.

2. ONE OF THE PACK. Gogosha Optique’s resident canine is a Pitsky puppy with heterochromia.

3. ‘TAKE ME OUT…’ The business is walking distance to Dodger Stadium.

4. RARITY. The store worked with Jacques Marie Mage to create an exclusive colorway in its favorite shape.

5. HEALTHY PERSPECTIVE. “We prioritize finding balance in commerce and community, need and want,” says Gogosha.

PHOTO GALLERY (19 IMAGES)

JUDGES’ COMMENTS
  • The ethos is clear here: “Lead or get outta the way!” Unique, fresh and approachable.Clean and inviting. I like the introduction of the different opticians. No typical see-you-coming average frames. Fantastic! — Mark Hinton, eYeFacilitate, Indianapolis, IN
  • The interior is very unique. The ceiling detail is intriguing and effectively creates “scale.” The large block structures in the center of the room are very different. This interior design will appeal immediately to certain demographics. The old adage “form follows function” fits this space, created to sell bespoke eyewear and not run-of-the-mill products. — Jan Ennis, Ennco Display Group, Redmond, WA 
  • Julia Gogosha knows how to tell a story in pictures. If you follow their Instagram account, you can see how Gogosha Optique gives their clients the space to try new things. They make their customers the heroes of the story! — Walter Roth, A&A Optical, Louisville, KY

After years covering some of the farther flung corners of the world of business journalism, Heath has more recently focused on covering the efforts of independent eyecare professionals to negotiate a fast-changing industry landscape. Contact him at [email protected]

SPONSORED VIDEO

See What’s Possible with EssilorLuxottica 360

When you have 360 degrees of support, you can grow your independent practice with confidence. When that support comes from industry leaders with a proven track record of providing partnership opportunities which help independent practices maximize their success – well, the possibilities are endless. From increased visibility through cutting-edge marketing to enhanced patient experiences leading to a better capture rate and everything in between, see what’s possible with EssilorLuxottica 360. Learn more at 360.EssilorLuxottica.com. Powering your practice. Empowering you.

Promoted Headlines

Advertisement

Advertisement

Subscribe

INVISIONMAG.COM
BULLETINS

Get the most important news and business ideas for eyecare professionals every weekday from INVISION.

Advertisement

Most Popular