I am admittedly a sunglasses addict. See my lookbook for evidence.
I wear a pair indoors, in the car, on a plane, at brunch, while people watching, whilst waltzing the city streets… and take them off only when the sun sets. I just have to draw my line when it becomes less of a fashion piece and more of a visionary impairment. For who sports these as a night owl, or mercy, at the gym?
Nonetheless, my addiction falls shy of trendy whenever I attend a New York Fashion Week in the fall. Having documented a thriving infatuation with sunglasses as part of broader trends in What to Wear with what you are Wearing (aka smart accessorizing), it makes sense that they get a respectable, solitary pedestal of their own.
Sunglasses serve many functions, besides the obvious of guarding against sunlight. Adding cosmic value to the face, hiding secrets of mischievous nights that so easily show up in (or under) eyes, or simply a veil that enables wearers to gape at objects of infatuation while concealing the core of the stare.
It’s no surprise that one of the many trends I noticed at New York Fashion Week was that of succulent sunglasses on a variety of face types. Some worked. Others fell shapelessly.
The ones that most caught my attention were blind people’s dark ones that covered over half a face, but made history with their quirky shapes and whimsical arms: be it cat eye, swirling Arabic style arms or frosty lenses that were merely black and, well, less black.
The more classic black was adorned by everyone from Paris Hilton who sashayed in with Swarowski on the eyebrow line, much like an Indian bride, to Janice Dickinson who reflected the blue sky in her rather flat pair.
Other fashionistas preferred to draw focus to the likes of their attire, for why distract with sunglasses when you have perfectly blonde hair with a high waist pink skirt, a high ab top with a cow print mini, or a shirt glistening with sequins reading “Hard Core Snob”?
Some adorned polo match style swooping hats that aided in the archaic but truthful purpose of eyewear, which was to protect against the glaring light.
Moving away from black were the solid color or leopard print shades. These either complimented a color on the rest of the attire, like cream on off-white, or provided a jarring contrast to an outfit, like lilac on white or leopard print on red. While some came across as cheaply plastic, the metallic sheen ones seemed to exude a stronger gaze.
And last were the oddlings: floral (think Daisy perfume florets) atop sunglasses, or neon green ones on a vinyl like blue jumper, or gold filigree style ones on an abstract patchwork ensemble (with a pout bag!). Bloggers How Two Live took it to a new level with heart shaped goggles that covered their noses too (New York subway stench avoidance perhaps?), both in fluorescents of green and pink. These however worked with their ethereal and trending white outfits.
What’s your purpose for sporting eyewear?