In amazing setting and glamour plenty of services and innovation in full Italian style, eyewear have never been so trendy. The proof is Mido, the most important fair of the sector worldwide from 47 years in Milan from February 25 to 27 concurrently with Milano Fashion Week brings under the Fiera Milano Rho-Pero news from more than 1,200 companies, of which 127 brand new companies. International Fashion Network (I.F.N.) with respectively Amsterdam Fashion Tv and Dubai Fashion Tv have had the pleasure and opportunity, thanks to the great work and support that ITA (Italian Trade Agency) gave to MIDO to be invited and report the whole exhibition for all fashion addicts that could not be present to this award winning stylish exhibition about one of the most distinguished and important fashion accessory and tool …. Eyewear.
Click here to enjoy the first part of our reportage where we interviewed Beppe Severgnini moderator of the opening press conference, and Michele Scannavini President of ITA (Italian Trade Agency).
We had the pleasure to interview in this official opening day Cirillo Marcolin President of MIDO, Lapo Elkann and Giovanni Carlino respectively Founder and Ceo of Italia Independent, Paola Busoli from MORA’ Eyewear, Gabriele Puglia from G-Sevenstars and many others.
Watch our interview to some of the most important personalities and brand present to this 2017 edition.
Frames are being made in multiple materials, and developments in new applications are exceptional. Marble is relatively new to eyewear and to achieve a comfortable light construction, has required painstaking research and commitment to new innovative design processes. The result is extremely rewarding given the unique natural colorations of marble and its precious, historic value.
In recent years, wood eyewear has been a focus in the natural materials segment. Artisan wood frames are produced by hand using traditional techniques merged with new technology to achieve hingeless and screwless designs, with focus on comfort, natural aesthetics, and technical details for functionality and easy glazing for the optician. Wooden frames using layers of wood laminate alternated with layers of other flexible materials such as carbon fibre are trending as one of the most wearable ways to wear wood.
Buffalo horn, like wood, is one of the precious materials in eyewear that is seeing renewed interest. Highlights include proposals by avant-garde designers specialising in limited edition designs that re-explore the hidden appeal of the material, its eco properties and natural tonal effects and individuality of colour.
Metal construction is bold, experimental and entails technical expertise. The leading metals – titanium, stainless steel and aluminium – appear in many forms as a fresh demand for minimal eyewear continues alongside a trend towards conceptual architectural metal frame constructions which study clear-cut lines, geometries and strong aesthetical impact.
In addition to elegant high-quality acetate designs, mixed materials are a key direction for 2017, in both the ophthalmic and sunglasses collections. Some of the more unexpected pairings, which include leather, horn, stone or wood with metal or acetate are rising quickly in desirability and are representative of a strong contemporary design elegance with technically-precise detail.
Frames covered in decorative floral motifs, artistic abstract prints and minuscule or macro patterns create unique, expressive and engaging styling in eyewear. Designers push boundaries to integrate fabric, natural elements such as real flower petals, dried leaves, feathers, or even tiny ceramic inlays. Precision in decorative treatments highlight artisan expertise in disciplines such as stone setting, silver work or distinct, elegant engraving.
Advances in frame manufacturing technology influence every visible and invisible detail of the new eyewear collections. Patented hinge technology, cutting-edge lens design, and 3D printing are a key focus for the future of eyewear. Facial scanning concepts are developing fast, alongside the surge of creative ideas in the 3D printed frame collections. A new style of dispensing where lens and frame are tailored to the individual’s facial features and visual needs offers the highest achievement yet for personalization of eyewear.
A strong and creative eco theme focuses in on a younger age group who demand a choice of interesting ecological products, high-level performance and an imaginative approach to design. Recyclable materials, a sustainable brand message and recycled packaging and cleaning cloths (made from recycled plastic bottles) will gain support from the eyewear consumer.
Trends observed in disciplines further afield – particularly interior design and architecture – are multifaceted. Distressed effects and tactile surfaces in matte or shiny variations are produced using experimental techniques, from burning the frame surface to applying diverse colour or surface treatments developed to bring special effects and an individual finish to the final product.
PRODUCTION, COMPANIES, AND EMPLOYEES
In 2016, Italian eyewear production totaled 3,697 million Euros, up by 3.7% over 2015.
This increase in production was lower than for the previous 2 years due to a lower rise in exports and the sluggish domestic market.
The number of companies remained basically the same, with 862 businesses nationwide (0.9% less than in 2015).
Employment levels also remained the same as in 2015: without taking other employment contracts into account (approx. 500) there were 17,250 people employed at the end of 2016.
EXPORTS AND BALANCE OF TRADE
Exports of frames, sunglasses and lenses, which account for almost 90% of production by the industry, rose by 3.6% versus 2015, totaling 3,579 million Euros.
[Preliminary forecasts, based on ANFAO estimates using the latest ISTAT data for January-October 2016.]
This increase was solely contributed by sunglasses, whereas frames lagged behind, confirming the trend that had already been posted in the last part of 2015.
In 2016, exports of sunglasses rose by 6.8%, amounting to approx. 2,465 million Euros.
Exports of frames instead, decreased by 2.8%, totaling approx. 1,045 million Euros.
This slowdown in growth is also reflected in imports which grew by 3.3% at almost 1,184 million Euros.
However, the balance of trade for Italian eyewear continues to be largely in surplus (2,395 million Euros in 2016), up by 4 percentage points versus 2015.