Eyewear Is Back in a Big Way

Once again, sunglasses have grown to enormous proportions just in time to meet the glare of the sun on winter snow (so early this year!) and resort sand. While smaller frame styles remain popular choices for corrective eyewear, it remains to be seen whether larger frames will become the eyewear of choice for daily wear too.

Eyewear needs to be taken into consideration in choosing jewelry—particularly jewelry worn close to the face. Most of the designer ads sidestep this issue, choosing not to incorporate sunglasses into a look accented with jewelry. For example:

A current ad for Fendi pictures large shades accented with a stylized goldtone F.

An ad for Emporio Armani shows oversized sunglasses with the company logo providing tiny goldtone accents.

Tiffany & Co. has a current ad for two styles of Tiffany Garden Eyewear, each adorned with Austrian crystals, that set the tone of any jewelry to be worn with those styles.

An ad for Miu Miu pictures actress Hailee Steinfeld wearing tortoiseshell frames with thin metal sides and large reddish lenses. Her lipstick relates to and emphasizes the color of the lenses.

Quirky styles are a distinct sub-category of the large eyewear. There is plenty of personality in these styles, which require accompanying jewelry to work with the cheekiness.

The November 2011 issue of Glamour features bright orange and white round-lens shades from Diane von Furstenberg. The Lulu Frost earrings shown on the page have enough presence to balance the look of the sunglasses, but will the earrings steal their thunder?

The October 2011 issue of Marie Claire spotlights British fashion icon Julia Sarr-Jamois, whose fun-loving style tips include this suggestion: “Skip heavy makeup in favor of quirky sunglasses, and let hair go au naturel.” The eyewear shown is from Illesteve (above) and Cutler and Gross. The page also pictures a charm necklace from La Mome Bijou and bracelets from Dezso by Sara Beltran—casual pieces that won’t compete with the large lenses.

There are a few ads and editorial stylings that illustrate how to combine large-scale eyewear with jewelry.

For instance, this ad for Dior pictures sunglasses with goldtone accents in a geometrical, squared-off shape. The eyewear is perfectly complemented with a handbag with a shoulder strap of rectangular goldtone links. The model also wears a necklace, largely obscured, that appears to incorporate thick goldtone metal and a large pendant that relates to the overall look of the sunglasses.

A current ad for Ralph Lauren features the Ricky Sunglasses in a clean, unadorned shape, worn with elaborate Asian-inspired drop earrings of jet and cinnabar. The bright lipstick on the model further coordinates with the earrings and emphasizes that they are the linchpin of the look.  

In this photo from the November 14, 2011 issue of People magazine, actress Jennifer Aniston “looks put together—not thrown together—in a rich scarf, sleek sunglasses and simple earrings,” notes the magazine. Her small gold hoop earrings match the color of the metal on her sunglasses and play a supporting role to the eyewear.  

The more elaborate the eyewear, the more it must figure into a determination of the optimal jewelry to accompany it. Coordinate the color of the metal and the overall level of refinement of each accessory that comprises the look. The end result is most pleasing: looking put together, not thrown together.