The Wayfarer, the Cat’s Eye, the Clubmaster and the Aviator – these names conjure images of hipster kids, glam movie stars, mid-90s cool cats, and Tom Cruise in his glory days. They are also the monikers given to four classic styles of sunglasses throughout the decades.
An iconic fashion item, sunglasses have long been more than just a way to block out the sun while driving or swanning about on the beach.
Indeed, as OPSM’s Katina Brady explains, they are seen as a necessary adjunct to the wardrobe, for more than purely utilitarian reasons.
“It’s a huge accessory and getting the right shape and colour is really important,” Katina says.
“This season, the cat’s eye and retro styles such as the round shape are in trend, as well as pastel colours and matte finish frames.”
“Of course, black frames are always a classic look,” she adds.
While there are a multitude of options, not every style suits every face. Couturing partnered with OPSM to discover the ideal frames for every face shape – recruiting five everyday models to take on the challenge of finding the perfect pair.
Stepping through the soaring glass doors, OPSM’s Eye Hub – a futuristic concept store in Hawthorn – is brimming with wares. The airy space is decked out in mirrored walls, panelled floorboards and row upon row of gleaming polarised glasses.
OPSM style gurus Katina and Rick stroll through the shelves of stacked shades, offering hints and styling advice for our real life models.
AMY ARNOTT wants sunglasses that are distinctive but not so that big that they swamp her face. The Stella McCartney frames with the outward arch accentuate her cheek bones and complement her delicate features, offsetting the dimensions of her triangle face.
“I love wearing retro clothing, and shopping at op shops, but I also love dressing up,” Amy explains.
“The Stella’s are a bit more hipster, which I like,” she adds, with a smile.
TOM PITNEY has the laidback urban look down, but needs the sunnies to top off his casual style. He says he wants something that doesn’t look too outrageous, but is a little bit different so he can make a subtle impact.
“I don’t want something too classic surfy,” he explains.
“I want something I can wear with a tee shirt, but also with a more formal look.”
“I’m generally pretty conservative, but like to think I have a bit of alternative flair,” he adds, grinning.
Tom’s oval face is evenly proportioned, a shape which works well with multiple styles. He looks great in a pair of gradient lens aviators but steers away from them as they remind him of his childhood, and settles on a pair of tortoise shell Burberry sunnies that are compactable; which is a novelty he says he likes.
The strong brow line with the curved lower lines is a classic look that mimics his jaw line and complements the length of his face, making the Burberry’s a perfect choice.
ALEKS LOBAZA has fair colouring and delicate features, with a chic aesthetic.
“You can tell by the way she dresses, she’s looking for something classic and a little bit edgy,” OPSM’s Rick notes.
She chooses the Prada tortoise shell cat’s eye frames, which are bold and unique but still very elegant.
“I think the cat’s eye is retro but wearable,” she says.
“They’re very classic and won’t date.”
Rick explains that the cat’s eye is a particularly strong feminine shape that flatters almost every look. For Aleks, the soaring angles of the cat’s eye act as a foil to her rounded face shape.
MASON GASOWSKI has a subtle-but-stylish panache and is looking for sunglasses that are dressier than his current go-to pair.
“I want something I can wear that’s versatile, a style between formal and casual,” he says.
“I don’t want to go to the races in fluoro green Raybans!”
Rick says Mason’s features suit a frame that is fine and not too heavy.
“Because of his strong jaw line and square shape, a frame with a slight curve and a wider proportion is best,” he explains.
The Rayban frames Mason chooses have a wide frame and a curved edge which softens the face; they look stylish but still edgy.
GILLIAN FERNANDES is looking for a pair of elegant frames that are slightly unusual, but don’t clash with her abundance of dark, curly hair.
“I want a shape with more wow factor,” she says.
“I’m working full time these days and need some sunglasses that are less laidback.”
With Gillian’s heart shaped face, she suits elongated oval frames, and delicate arches.
The Stella McCartney frames she chooses are on trend, in a cat’s eye arch, the sharp angles of which offset her curls to perfection.
“I love these!” she exclaims.
The satisfaction and joy at finding the perfect pair of sunglasses is easy at the OPSM Eye Hub, as Couturing’s five real-life models have discovered.
To understand your face shape and choose styles that offset your features to the utmost is essential, because nothing beats the confidence of knowing you look your best.