Breaking the rules with Kirk and Kirk Centena
We are known for our ‘not on the high street’ independent eye wear. And we often get asked what is your best seller, what are people going crazy for?
The answer is usually a simple classic tortoise shell, in a square or oval shape or perhaps (lets go mad) squoval. The truth is the most popular frames are often the most classic, the most easy to wear but perhaps not the most memorable?
So over the years we have accepted that popularity will be inversely proportionate to how edgy a product is. But we have not let that stop us and have made it our mission to push the equation to its limits. Not one for an easy life we have selected products on the basis that they excite us rather than universal popularity. After-all we don’t want to be just another beige high street optician. As it happens our risk has gradually been rewarded and we have developed loyal customers often travelling from afar to get their hands on the unique eye wear we stock.
With that in mind we picked up Kirk and Kirk nearly 3 years ago at a trade fair in Paris. Definitely edgy we thought but super fun and exciting. The frames were large and made of crystal-clear acrylic in neon bright colours. Perfect to ruffle some feathers in our Kensington store.
But a strange thing happened Kirk and Kirk flew off our shelves and we are happy to say has broken the equation! Think of it as the optical equivalent of the floss dance. Bonkers but popular
This year the Kirk the Kirk family celebrate 100 years in optics. It was Sidney and Percy Kirk who opened their first London workshop in 1919. Three generations later, inspired by their heritage and twenty years of passion for eye wear, Jason and Karen Kirk launched Kirk & Kirk
To celebrate this incredible anniversary Kirk & Kirk have launched Centena, the first collection to be handmade in France from 10mm acrylic. 10 shapes in 10 colours and are named after Kirk family members.
“Using 10mm acrylic allows us to sculpt this beautiful material and create pieces that look like cut glass.” says designer Karen Kirk
The lightness of the material allows for a substantial frame that weighs next to nothing on the face. The Italian materials allow Kirk & Kirk to source their own unique colours and gives the frame a jewel-like quality.
Explore the Kirk and Kirk Centena and Kaleidocope collection at Eyeworks London