I regularly make fun of my mother for her reading glasses at home.
I also envy the chic style many youthful squints rock – which pop culture has unhelpfully perpetuated as being ridiculously attractive.
Save for a little light sensitivity, I always thought I had perfect vision – “20/20” as any layman flaunts, without a clue about the medical specifics required to gauge such acuity.
While planning my Los Angeles trip, I thought about:
- The blistering California sun captured in every tourism logo
- The drying breezes that make headlines
- The dazzling city lights one often hears people being ensnared by
- And I also thought about the different cultural experiences & people I would engage in the city.
…And so suddenly, I found myself in the midst of an epiphany: I need to make sure I can see everything on this trip, crystal clear!
Research on lenses, the average price of frame consults, as well as the best optometrist in my city, revealed an unmistakable gem: The Oculus.
With the global eyewear industry profits conservatively estimated at $100-billion annually, and there being a not insignificant number of people wearing contact lenses, using visual aids, or investing in glasses, The Oculus Eyewear‘s high-tech frame design & recent artisanal production strategy, pits them as a disruptor, in the local industry, and may just lead them straight into infamy.
In light of the eyeglass monopoly steering prices up globally, they are in the process of embarking on a brave endeavour: Preserving artisanal eyewear craftsmanship, through the creation of their own bespoke frames.
The Oculus Eyewear may not be trying to secede Italian firm Luxottica, who are known to have markups of up to 1 000% on their glasses (try finding decently priced sunnies at Sunglass Hut), but their design strategy alone may put them ahead of many others.
Pieter Steyn at The Oculus,is an O.D. who can conduct visual exams that transcend traditional eye-tests – all from the sedate comfort of his glossy offices/showroom, which is kitted out in some of the finest international eyewear, minimalist decor, and tech, in the hemisphere.
Through this company’s advanced (near IMAX state of the art) vision exam, where an OPD-scan is also done, the in-house optometrist is well-equipped to detect diseases & injuries which may previously have gone undetected.
The tech specs, are beyond me, but the experience is wholly cool, fun, and informative, from the get-go.
If you’re fixed on getting all-new glasses suited to your look and taste, Pieter will log your vision exam, and additionally 3D scan your face in less than a minute, and you’ll be on your way to that bespoke life.
I find the next step really cool: The Oculus Eyewear has their own secreted away factory/studio elsewhere.
The factory/studio is a behind-the-scenes look at creativity at play, meticulous manufacturing details, as well as the sheer labour required to produce fine handcrafted eyewear.
It’s where a personal consultation regarding your custom acetate & horn frames, can be nailed down with the designer.
People of Color generally maintain wider noses; And glasses sold commercially, do not accommodate wider noses.
A thorough face-to-face interaction at this studio, will result in a perfect fit for you, being worked on.
I got to sit in as the talented Pieter took my previous 3D facial scan & visual exam results, and began designing every detail of my frames within an inch of their lives. It’s incredible!
The Oculus Eyewear design maestro looks at the Italian acetate they import for the frames, the way Michelangelo looked at marble – it is a canvas, as well as an extension of an artist.
As a result of each pair of glasses being near art, which cannot be duplicated exactly, the process from acetate cut to finish line, is not cut-and-dry.
Much like a bespoke Vera Wang wedding dress, a client would need to be fitted twice or thrice, to make sure things like the horn temple (the behind-the-ear bit) sits tucked away firmly and comfortably.
“The beauty of bespoke is the little touches that show a frame has been made by hand, not machine.” – The Oculus Eyewear
Later on (after Pieter and his team painstakingly complete your one-of-a-kind frames), clients get to pick a lens – transition lenses or otherwise – factoring in the advice of your optometrist and real-world conditions, like: ultraviolet lights damage to humans, and protecting eyes from bugs & dust.
The Crux of it all:
The Oculus, is a masterclass in eyewear and eyecare – as relevant in its visual enhancement, as it is in its fashion statement. Their product is protective, and serves a look.
You could probably find some conglomerate or mall store, delivering regular frames to you in a week…but nothing beats custom.
Even young people have come to understand the value of sometimes investing in something long-lasting & singular
…And that attention to detail, that ensures frames last decades, and that lenses protect against the all-year oculus sun damage, is why you should choose The Oculus Eyewear.
Address: The Oculus, The Mirage Building, cnr Chiappini and Strand st, De Waterkant, Cape Town, 8001
Tel:+ 27(21) 421 0023
Fax: +27(21) 421 8867
Monday: 10h00am – 18h00pm
Tuesday to Thursday: 09h00am – 18h00pm
Friday: 09h00am – 17h00pm
Saturday: 10h00am – 14h00pm