While London is no longer known as a spectacle-making hub, the world’s very first spectacles with temples were made on Dean Street, Soho, in around 1730. Setting out to revive this almost-forgotten craft, Cubitts manufactures all its bespoke spectacles and made-to-measure frames in the optical workshop in the basement of its King’s Cross HQ, combining modern machinery and traditional frame-making skills.
Its latest collaboration with Australian graphic designer Leif Podhajsky, however, is anything but traditional, capturing Leif’s distinctive use of kaleidoscopic colour and pattern on the frames and featuring flat zero base lenses reminiscent of early 1990s grunge fashion. Podhajsky is known for his psychedelia-inspired style and abstract landscape collages, and has created album cover artwork for artists including Kylie Minogue, London Grammar and Kelis.
The bold Cubitts x Leif Podhajsky line features a limited run of two sunglasses designs in unique ‘Emerald’ and ‘Tourmaline’ colourways that are ideal for making a statement this summer. The frames are named ‘Ridley’ after Ridley Road, the Dalston market street that Podhajsky lived on when in London.
In addition to the sunglasses, Leif has also designed an exclusive print that will appear on the cleaning cloths that accompany the frames. The cloths will be available to buy separately in all Cubitts stores, with proceeds from the sales going to Podhajsky’s charity of choice, Mind UK.
Available online from £125; cubitts.co.uk