Bespoke Spectacles

Maison Bonnet 'Saint Laurent' frame
Maison Bonnet ‘Saint Laurent’ frame in golden horn

For a long time now I’ve been wearing glasses. Contact lenses just don’t work for me. Either I can get them in and not out or can only get one in and not the other. So eyeglasses are my lot in life. Of all the people you see with glasses I’ve long admired the shape of Yves Saint Laurent’s glasses.

YSL in Maison Bonnet
YSL in Maison Bonnet

They are so beautifully proportioned and perfect for his face. It’s obvious that the maker of his glasses was much more skilled than a Moscot or a Cohen’s fashion Optical. Periodically, I’d ask different opticians if they knew where the frames for YSL were made. You can imagine how surprised I was to see a story on this fabled company in the Sept. issue of GQ magazine.

Maison Bonnet is a family run business in Paris’ First Arrondissement. For 4 generations they have been sculpting some of the most beautiful eyeglass frames on earth. One of the few concerns still allowed to work with turtle shell, they sculpt, file, fit and adjust this precious material to make frames that perfectly suit the wearer. They do a minimum of 10 measurements analyzing your head, eyes, nose, ears, cheekbones, skull, hair, you name it, in the service of designing the right frame with the proper proportion to compliment you. The process can take from 2.5-5 months for a single pair and will start at about 1,500 Euros.

Maison Bonnet 'I.M.Pei' frame
Maison Bonnet ‘I.M.Pei’ frame

It’s no wonder that they’ve outfitted some of the most important people of the last century like Corbusier, YSL, Jacques Chirac, Jackie O, Aristotle Onassis and many others. Unlike Chanel, Gucci, Prada or any other logo laden company, Maison Bonnet has only their near perfect product to herald their existence. One must only look to see the beauty in an object made of precious materials and made completely by the hands of master craftsmen.

Maison Bonnet 'Takeushi' frame
Maison Bonnet ‘Takeushi’ frame
Jackie and Ari in Maison Bonnet eyeglasses
Jackie and Ari in Maison Bonnet eyeglasses

The latest generation of Bonnets led by father Christian and sons Franck and Steven have added new materials to the mix. Besides turtle shell and horn in all of its amazing colorations, they also blend acetate, pearl and shagreen to craft these extraordinary frames. The Bonnet family and tradition thrive as one of the very few creators of Haute-Luneterie. Like a couture article of clothing, these eyeglasses are the finest you’ll find in the world.

 

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