As as stylist, an area often overlooked when discussing personal style and strategic styling is eyewear.

But your glasses are a crucial element in expressing your personality and conveying a message to the word about who you are.

A story told by my grandmother is that my mother would walk into stores as a young woman  in the 50s and say

“Please, don’t show me anything ordinary”. She may now be in her 70s but that fierce independent style aesthetic and horror of the ordinary, dreary & the drab has not left her.

So when I took her to 20|20 Optical for new spectacles I knew we were in the right place.

Extraordinary is what they do.

In Willy Wonka he says ‘We are the music makers and we are the dreamers of dreams’. In the world of eyewear (as opposed to candy), 20/20 eyewear designers share the same philosophy, says Kevin Dick.

Kevin Dick’s optical concept store 20|20 broke new boundaries when it opened and continues to with its directional and innovative range of designer eyewear.

After attending the incredible THEO eyewear showcase at GoMA I really was intrigued by Kevin’s philosophy and love of eyewear.

So I had a chat with him about 20|20  and  his passion for eyewear and expert advice for those choosing new spectacles.

 

STEELEMYStyle speaks to Kevin Dick  of 20|20 Optical. 

A fashion-forward optometrist with over 20 years experience who gravitated to the directional high end of the optical market and returned to Brisbane in 2000 with a new concept in eyewear and opened 20|20 Optical.

 

 

 

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SMS: The THEO Showcase at GoMA was very Charlie & the Chocolate Factory themed – are you a big fan of the film?

 

KD: I have always been a fan of Willy Wonka and indeed all the characters of Roald Dahl. As much as I admire Johnny Depp as an actor, I feel nothing compares to Gene Wilder’s performance in the original version of 1971.

Anyone who knows me knows I’m also a big fan of director Wes Anderson. His attention to detail and fresh expression of individuality is a delight. It’s little wonder that he created ‘Fantastic Mr Fox’ (another Roald Dahl book) in such a creative way.

Willy Wonka says ‘We are the music makers and we are the dreamers of dreams’. In the world of eyewear (as opposed to candy), 20/20 eyewear designers share the same philosophy.

It has been my goal since we began in 2000 to share this philosophy, and our Theo Showcase at GOMA was a fun and creative way to spread the word about the innovations in eyewear that can now be at everyone’s finger tips.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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SMS: What can the customer expect coming into 20|20? 

KD: Expect to be welcomed warmly.

Expect to be asked how we can help.

Expect to be listened to.

Expect to be invited to sit down, relax, and personally view a hand-picked selection of eyewear we know will suit.

Expect to be in safe hands.

Expect… a different experience.

 

 

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SMS: As a stylist, I tell clients that if they wear glasses they need to invest in them to express their personality as they wear them everyday and they are one of the first things people will notice.

With your background and experience – do you have anything to add to that in terms of how the right designer eyewear can impact the wearer’s style? 

 

KD: It’s funny.

In the areas of marketing and social media everybody seems to get the importance of first impressions and also ‘stickability’.

Yet when it comes to personal presentation, particularly with eyewear, the opportunity is often squandered.

At 20/20 we specialise in personalised outcomes. Wearing our eyewear conveys an attention to detail, often with curious details that create that ‘I want to know more’ feeling in the eye of the beholder.

 

 

 

THEO “Cinquante-neuf ” Black  $750  cinquante_neuf

 

 

 

SMS: What inspired you to get into optometry? 

KD: ‘Inspiration’ is perhaps not quite the term I would use for a 17 year old kid looking for a career.

Hey, it was a health science where you can use your brain and try to help people, a noble cause and it’s been a great journey, but the passion and aesthetic – the inspiration – for what works comes from many years and many crossings of paths.

‘Fundamentals are the foundations of fun’…. I guess for me, starting on the road of optometry was where I discovered my fundamentals.

 

 

 

 

THEO Strook – Zoo – $850 

 

Zoo

 

 

 

SMS: What international brands and designers are exciting you this year? 

KD: Our collection of eyewear designers. They are the music makers.

I’m always following new designers, but I dare not mention their names for fear of the Slugworths out there.

I’m always on the lookout. But it has to be more than a new ‘concept’. There has to be depth to a range.

For example,  Strook is actually a Belgian Street Artist with whom Theo have collaborated for their “Strook” collection. His artwork was used for the etching design on the frames. If the designs were laid out they would show a street map of Antwerp. The names of the frames in this collection highlight the areas Antwerp is known for, eg. Fashion, Zoo, Diamond etc.

 

 

 

 

THEO Strook range Limited Edition 3 – Green – $950  

 theo Strook 3

 

 

 

 

 

 

SMS: Are there any particular trends or advances that are catching your attention and that you are bringing back to Brisbane? 

 

KD: The mass market is still stuck on retro acetates like RayBans. This comes as no surprise after the GFC and a trending towards ‘safe and generic’, but it’s a bit like everyone wearing jeans for everything.

Our designers do what they want. Trends? Try Flat Metals – stainless steel and titanium in amazing colours, but just make sure you get the shape right first.

You’ll see it the moment you put them on – they just look so much better.

 

 

 

 

THEO “Cinquante-neuf ” Orange  $750  

 

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SMS: For someone moving out of the mainstream mass eyewear market for the first time – what would you say? 

 

KD: Be prepared to step out of your comfort zone.

To quote from Dune (another of my favourite classic movies): ‘Without change, something lies asleep deep inside us that seldom awakens…The Sleeper must awaken!’

Basically, life is short. Seize the day in whatever you do.

 

 

 

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SMS: Anyone you would love to work with ? 

 

KD: I’d say Shaun Micallef.

Aside from being very bright, not to mention very funny, he’s multi-faceted giving us many options.

 

 

SMS: Do you have any tips in terms of finding the right eyewear? 

 

KD: Choose style over colour. What is the point of colour if the style is wrong to begin with?

Proportion and balance give the best outcomes.

Consider the whole experience. If where you buy your eyewear is generic or drab, or even if the person assisting you looks drab, chances are the results will be…

Choosing eyewear is always a case of balancing individuality and stylistic freedom with public perception.

Here’s the trick, and it’s a no brainer….. Allow yourself more than one pair.

Limiting your options is like constantly being on a diet… boring and unhealthy.

Have an open mind and live a little.

 

 

 

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20|20 OPTICALJAMES STREETph 07 3852 2020mon-saturday 9-5
20|20 OPTICALTHE BARRACKSph 07 3367 2020mon-saturday 9-5

 http://www.2020optical.com.au/