Inside Track on Frame Styling
What should people consider when choosing a frame, in terms of look and feel?
Avoid wearing a frame because it looks good on someone else! It sounds obvious but it is a common trap. A frame should feel substantial, solid, secure in your hands and very comfortable on the face. This usually means an even weight distribution so that the whole of the bridge is sitting on the nose (rather than a gap between the nose and the bridge) and not pressing on or behind the ear. A frame should express the way you feel or the image that you want to portray. This is why people have several frames for different moods and different environments. The general rule of thumb is that if a frame does not make you feel two inches taller, then you are not wearing the right frame.
How do you know a quality frame from a dodgy frame?
It is easy to make a frame look but a lot harder to make it to a high standard. Look at the joints and hinges inside the frame. A good sturdy joint is often a sign of quality. Check out where the sides butt onto the front of the frame; is it flush? Look at the thickness if the frame is made of acetate. If the material is too thin then the frame will soon weaken - but a good thick sturdy frame should maintain its form.
What questions should we be asking our dispensing opticians?
1) Is the frame appropriate for my prescription? Do not forget that as fashionable as glasses are, they usually have a medical purpose. 2) Will this frame fit me? Glasses come in all shapes and sizes just like clothes so make sure that what looks good on the shelf will actually sit correctly on your face. 3) Will I pull in these glasses? Find an optician from whom you would be happy taking styling advice. They don't all wear white lab coats, especially on a Saturday night, and some have a better feeling for what will suit you than others.
Are there, say, three key ingredients that make a 'perfect fit'?
There are three main considerations here. Firstly, if a frame sits well on your nose then the height and position of the lenses should make the frame well balanced on your face. Secondly does the frame express your personality? This is a little bit esoteric but if you are an interesting personality then choose interesting eyewear. If you are dull, then there is plenty of choice around! Finally, no one frame can express all of your different moods and requirements. If the budget can stretch, try to get a small wardrobe of eyewear together like you would with shoes. It is the first and most memorable item of clothing that people see.
FINAL TIP: Take your time choosing your frames. If you are looking for something a little more unusual, then The Big Optician should be your first port of call.