Favorite Cult and Indie Eyewear Brands to Follow
Finding the perfect pair of glasses, whether optical or sunnies, is a daunting task. If you’re like us and seek styles that are unique, expertly crafted and easy on the wallet, look no further than Optical Underground. Founded in San Francisco in 1911, this legacy eyewear company has been preserved by Lloyd Silverstein, the third generation owner of this family business.
After decades of being The City's go-to purveyor of luxury eyewear, Lloyd has formed partnerships with some of the industry's most talented designers to sell their past season's overstocks and recently discontinued styles - all at substantial discounts. Optical Underground gives eyewear addicts and newbies the chance to see and feel the difference of handcrafted eyewear, all without breaking the bank.
While Optical Underground doesn’t traditionally advertise the brands carried in-store - the “speakeasy vibe” - they can share a few of their favorite cult brands you should definitely be following:
Cutler and Gross
For the closest thing to bespoke eyewear, turn to the legendary British brand Cutler and Gross. Founders Graham Cutler and Tony Gross have designed for royalty, titans of European industry and celebrities alike. Limited production of these handmade specs guarantees your unique look. Now about to enter the US market, Optical Underground is the first, and only store Cutler and Gross trusted with their overstock and past season’s collection.
Duo Bill Barton and Patty Perreira, of Barton Perreira, are celebrating their brands’ 10th anniversary this year. Their company’s focus on impeccable, classic design and expert craftsmanship has made them one of the industry’s most respected eyewear brands. Each frame is considered a work of art, and at Optical Underground prices, it makes investing in stylish specs that much easier.
In the 80’s, Optical Underground was one of the first American companies to import eyewear from the exclusive French optician Harry Lasry. Fast forward three decades and Harry’s son, Thierry has taken the reins and created a cult brand of his own - Thierry Lasry. His self-described “futuristic vintage” styles are seen on more runway models than almost any other. Hand-made in France, his modern frames are sure to give you that “wow” factor with avant-garde details, thoughtfully executed. Beyonce, Rihanna and Chrissy Teigen are all fans - need we say more?
Elizabeth and James
And speaking of celebrities, it’s no secret the Olsen twins are famous for their oversized shades. So how did they take their signature style and capitalize on it? By launching their own eyewear company called Elizabeth and James. Embodying the duo’s sophisticated, unique style, these sunnies can be hard to track down.
But no need to make a spectacle of yourself… Just head to Batch to view and try-on styles from all of these sought-after brands.