What does new mean to you? Better? More desirable? Improved? As a designer it is my job to make something new or improve something that already exists. With an immense number of new sunglasses coming out every single day, how can we justify contributing to putting yet another out in the world?
If everything that was new, was also better, we would in theory all be better off. If it’s more sustainable, efficient to use, attractive, and improves your life in any way, then I would call that a good reason to make something new. Sadly, that is not the world we live in. At Sunski we believe that making new sunglasses comes with a great responsibility. We must adhere to the principles this company was founded on and all of us believe in; To make products that enhance outside experiences without having a negative impact on the planet.
Making new sunglasses does not mean following what everyone else is doing. It does not mean catching the latest trend or chasing the shiniest opportunity. We notice these trends without following them blindly, but by applying them in a very considered way to our products. We particularly focus on the less tangible aspects, such as new material trends, improvements in lens technologies or investigate how we can use certain color trends in new and interesting ways.
However, all this work needs to happen while asking ourselves ‘do we think someone would wear this pair of sunglasses in 20 years?’. If the answer is no, then we will not consider making it. Creating something from a trend today that runs the risk of being thrown away next season would be counter to our core principal. I don’t like the word ‘timeless’, as it is such a cliché in the design world, but it’s actually what we strive to achieve.
An interesting part of new sunglasses is the fact that they are rarely new. Especially these days. Almost every pair of new sunglasses that you see have some heritage from the past. I spend hours in old eyewear history books looking for interesting combination of materials. How something was constructed in the past with less sophisticated manufacturing techniques often imagining how this could look combined with a new trend in a certain color or material. Designers often have the task of looking to the future, and the past has a huge role in helping to do so.
Creating a Bond
When you own an object for a long time, a bond tends to form. A scratch there or a scruff here brings back memories of adventuring with friends (or when your dog tried eating them). It’s an important part of why you end up loving something. It goes from just being a new thing to something you can’t stand losing. Creating that bond does not happen with fast fashion items you couldn’t care less about after that one weekend trip is over. That bond can only flourish by making something that stands the test of time and gets better with a life well lived.
So, what are our sunglasses trends for summer 2020? The same as the sunglasses trends for 2040.