Celebrated eyewear designer, Blake Kuwahara debuts his largest collection to date, 19 new styles this year.
“We launched The Grey Label with just 4 styles last Fall. The initial collection introduced the use of casting to create the three-dimensionality of a skeletal motif. With the 8 additional new styles there is more meat on the bone – so to speak”, says Kuwahara referring to his source of inspiration.
Indeed, the Blake Kuwahara Grey Label is a deliberately different expression of his brand’s design ethos of ‘artful yet wearable’. “As an optometrist, anatomy and biology classes were a prerequisite in my studies (Kuwahara holds a doctorate in Optometry and a Bachelor of Sciences degree in Psychobiology). I’ve always been intrigued by skeletal structures.
In my earlier KATA Eyewear Collection, I used exo-skeletons (shells, beetles) that were cast using the same techniques as jewelry makers. For this new collection, I used endo-skeletal structures that are produced in the same old-school way”, continues Kuwahara.
The joints and bones that form the end pieces and temples become evident with closer inspection. “My intention is never to shock or have any element of the frame jump out at you. Rather, it’s about discovering the subtle, nuanced details”.
The 2020 Collection will also include 11 additional styles with a mix of optical frames and sunglasses for both men and women incorporating Kuwahara’s signature frame-within-a-frame laminated technique for which he has become known. “This season I wanted to use much more translucent and transparent colors in shades of crystals, blue-greys, taupes, and carmel. It’s a much lighter palate but still rich in tone”, says Kuwahara.
“With the growing retail and consumer base for Blake’s designs and appreciation for his keen aesthetic sensibility, we have invested in growing the number of offerings each season – this release being our largest. Product is key, and this is where we feel our resources are best placed”, says Richard Mewha, President of Fade To Grey, the distributing company for Kuwahara’s line.
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