• Francesca Chelli

Wearing Shades of Wood


If you name these sunglasses as accessories, it's an understatement. Protecting the eyes and the delicate area around the eyes from the sun is taken for granted, as well as that they are part of our outfit. In reality these are real pieces of design, artistic expressions, fusion of distant worlds that have combined their experiences to create a product of excellence having the shape and function of eyeglasses, but the soul that has crossed faraway places, capturing their essence to sublimate it.

But let's start from the beginning. Gianni, an expert in the automotive world with a passion for eyewear, wanted to create something unique and truly special that could accompany sporty moments with uniqueness, elegance and determination, three adjectives that well qualify his working world.

Marco, designer and wood artist, with a thirty-year history as a manufacturer of handcrafted musical instruments he supremely masters, was captured by this idea and the outcome is really special: truly unique designed frames , glamorous and functional together, every pair of shades so special and versatile that when they tell you to choose one you would like to take them all....

The fact that a pair of glasses is made of wood is not at all trivial. Wood is one of the most fascinating materials, because it has been used by man since prehistoric times, continuing to be present in industrial times with new production methods. However, in the artistic work, the experience and competence of the craftsman remain irreplaceable, his manual skills and knowledge of the material are the fundamental key to his work. Wood is a completely natural material that has a good resistance to external agents even without special treatments, it is flexible and resistant together, and these features make it particularly interesting for an object like shades.

And then there are values that are less material and increase the charm of this wooden object: it is pure nature, it has a scent that reminds us of woods and landscapes near and afar, and last but not least, it is entirely handmade , the only operation performed with the aid of machinery is the cutting of the frames and of the rods. Wearing a pair of Italian Wood glasses gives sensations that go far beyond functional and aesthetic use.

The wood essences chosen for the four different types of frames are: various Rosewoods, Ebony Macassar, Black ebony, Movingui, Cirmolo, Teak and my beloved Olive tree, which with its light and also very dark streaks, tells us about the sea, sun, of scents carried by the wind, therefore of the Mediterranean, being a typical tree of this area. The feeling of having wood on the skin is really very special: it is light, soft, does not make you sweat nor hit. And of course it has thousands of different shades, never the same!

In his atelier on the hills above Bergamo, Marco starts from the shapes of the wooden masks that are cut in the workshop and arrive raw and ready to be worked. The veneer method guarantees stability and hardness to the frames and various tools smooth the wood, which becomes very soft, with a velvety finish and prepared in the various passages, through a rare craftsmanship to find nowadays.

It's the hands that govern these creations.This is why the pieces are preciously few and strictly numbered. I have the number three, for example. The three represents perfection, and I would say that we are right there.

Think that these glasses have endured tests used in other sectors, for example the saline tests in a cabin that simulated fifteen years by the sea, rather than the test on the dashboard of the car, whose temperature reaches even ninety degrees, for checking the tightness over time.

After various passages the rods, closures, hinges, logos are assembled and then here we go with luxury customization, from engraving, to remember particular moments, to further embellishment with precious metal inserts and diamonds.

After the last few steps, the shades are certainly ready to be worn, but above all to accompany life being a special piece, rich in Italian manual skills and with exceptional materials.

The Italian Wood eyewear conveys an emotion, it is an object of memories and presence, a part that lives always with you, as Gianni and Marco say.

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