29 December 2009

A Decade in Shades

Though many of us are looking forward to the end of 2009 and this somewhat dismal decade, I couldn't resist the temptation to look back on the aughts and how far our sunnies have come. We've moved away from the early 00s logo craze, but still swear by our classic aviators. White sunglasses were briefly hip, but then named as one of 2007's worst trends by People. Designers were inspired by both retro and futuristic styles. Colored wayfarers were all the rage last year, but clear frames were simultaneously in vogue. And let's just pretend that Kanye West/Alain Mikli plastic shaded thing never happened. Its been a rough ten years.

Bigger is still better. Much of the decade was dominated by reality TV starlets in oversized logo sunnies who would later go on to launch their own ill-fated lines. We've given up on the bling, but oversized sunglasses are still huge.

Except when smaller is better. The cool girls (i.e., M.K.)have already embraced the round, John Lennon-inspired frames. The sunglasses in Proenza Schouler's Spring 2009 RTW show (below) were a pitch perfect example of the trend, but they were also seen at Balenciaga, Marni and Ralph Lauren. I don't see these going away in 2010.

Future Perfect. Balenciaga's Spring 2007 clear shield sunglasses paved the way for the both the futuristic and clear frame trend. Their designer, Nicolas Ghesquiere, cited "robotic articulation, car parts and droids" as his inspiration.

Retro Forever.Our sunglasses have been shaped by nearly every imaginable era. The 1950s influence can be seen in last year's cat-eye, Peggy Guggenheim-esque shapes. Folding Persols and Jackie Onassis's trademark oversized sunglasses are direct references to the 1960s. The 70's mod angles can be seen in _blank">Balenciaga and Linda Farrow styles. But no era has shaped our sunnies preferences (neon, plastic frames and wayfarers) more than the 80s.

The 80s Live. In 2006 and 2007, wayfarers were everwhere and on everybody. The Ray-Bans are, of course, the gold standard, but even Karl Lagerfeld got in on the action for Spring 2008 when he showed his candy-coated take on the trend.

The Newbies. In the past ten years, a seemingly countless number of new sunglasses lines have been introduced, as nearly ever major fashion house entered the eyewear market. A standout is Karen Walker's line, which premiered in 2006 and consistently produces some of the most innovative and exciting sunnies around.

What are you hoping makes the cut next year and what styles could you live without? Here's to 2010, flashies!


Juju at Tales of Whimsy.com said...

While I loved most of the 80s come back I could totally do with out the rapper blinds.

Lani said...

I do love the wayfarers and the clubmaster styles from ray ban and other brands.

But i am really excited to see Round sunglasses and small sunglasses make a comeback in the new decade, can't wait to wear them.