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I’m a big fan of Off-White. For those who don’t know, Virgil Abloh is the founder and creative director of Off-White, the high fashion and streetwear-fused brand that launched in 2013. Although it’s only been a few short years since its inception, Abloh has firmly established himself as a force to be reckoned with in the industry. He is a multi-hyphenate — a fashion designer, architect, and D.J. who counts major icons such as Celine Dion and Beyoncé as part of his fleet of celebrity clientele. In the past, Abloh has collaborated with mass-market brands such as Ikea and Levi’s. But this is the first foray into eyewear, as Off-White does not currently have a licensee, such as Luxottica or Safilo.
For Warby Parker, this partnership represents one of the few times the entrepreneurial eyewear brand has collaborated with a high-fashion brand. Past collaborations have included Suno and Maiyet, as well as with artist Robert Rauschenberg and photographer Amanda de Cadenet.
Neil Blumenthal, Warby Parker co-CEO and co-founder, said in a press statement: “Both Off-White and Warby Parker were born from the idea that good products shouldn’t be limited to a small community. It only feels natural to collaborate on a frame that’s equal parts accessible and elevated.”
I, for one, am excited about the accessibility factor of the new sunglass collection, which affordably starts at just $95. For reference, Off-White T-shirts typically start at $300, while jackets can easily run over $1,000.
The collection offers three sunglass shapes colloquially dubbed, “Small Sunglasses,” “Medium Sunglasses,” and “Large Sunglasses,” a naming tactic applied across many of Abloh’s Off-White collections. Each pair comes in a crisp white case and box.
I tried on all three sunglasses and was impressed by the weight and sturdy feel of each pair. They are all fashionable spins on the classic Ray-Ban Wayfarers or the Céline “Kim” styles, bearing a mix of high-fashion and commercial versatility. Each pair is made of a thick black acetate and includes a blue anti-reflective coat on the interior.
As an Asian, I often struggle with finding sunglasses that actually stay put on my face, especially ones that don’t include nose pads. I was surprised to find that the Off-White x Warby Parker ones were not only comfortable, but stayed firmly on.
Although I do love the “Large” and “Small” frames, the best fit for me was the “Medium.” It makes a statement without being too cheeky. I can easily see myself wearing these sunglasses for years to come.
The “Large” sunglasses were a bit to big for my face shape, while the “Small” frames didn’t suit my round face — although I do find them very chic.
For those who live in New York City and want to pick up a pair in person — since these will sell out quickly — you are in luck. You can catch Virgil Abloh at the Warby Parker Soho store located at 121 Greene Street starting at 6 p.m. today where he will be signing custom frame boxes.
Off-White c/o Virgil Abloh x Warby Parker, “Small Sunglasses,” “Medium Sunglasses,” and “Large Sunglasses,” $95, available at warbyparker.com/off-white.
Keep your eyes peeled here for the next installment of #TheCurrent. Don’t miss out on the next fashion tip or product scoop you didn’t know you needed.
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