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Blog - vintage glasses

Who is Lucio Stramare? And why should you care?

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Hands up those of you who have at least 2 pairs of glasses? Keep your hand up if you have 4 pairs or more? Thats still a fair few of you. How about 15,000 pairs?

Lucio Stramare grew up in the Veneto region of Italy. Whilst most of us are familiar with that area’s famous floating city, the region is to eyewear what the British midlands used to be to cars (or still is if you're a Jaguar / Land Rover fan).

Lucio’s parents worked in the glasses industry, and he developed a keen interest in all things optical. Actually ‘obsessive’ is probably a better word. He scoured second hand markets and antique shops, visited factories and generally learned all he could about eyewear - its history and development. As an adult this interest took him around the world.

What most people perceive as a ‘means to an end’, simply a way to keep our vision and an item to lose / sit on or try and stop the dog chewing, Lucio saw as magical objects. Glasses are incredible insights into history and places. Every frame represents someone’s dream, the emotion of the design, its life with its' owner, the love of the chosen materials and the ability to create something that is far more than the sum of its parts. An object with a story.

Lucio’s insights also highlight the practical. Would history be different if the ‘great and the good’ did not have glasses to aid their vision, to be able to carry out their research, to pen important documents, to continue to travel?

“Without glasses and the lens the cultural level of man wouldn’t be like it is now”

Lucio Stramare is a designer. He has what he calls a “consulting archive” of over 15,000 pieces collected over 30 years. This collection is now a brilliant itinerant exhibition and book of eyewear called

Regrettably I haven't met Lucio. I have, however, met the businessman who recently persuaded Lucio to create his own eyewear collection, Mario di Bello!

The designs take inspiration from what Lucio Stramare believes are the three key decades in eyewear history - 1920-1930, 1950-1960 and 1970-1980. The range is made from Lucio’s choice of ‘perfect’ materials and the final product represents his dream glasses, a brilliant, no compromise range of eyewear that makes you feel good and shows you just how fantastic your glasses should be.

And what is his range of eyewear called? Archivio Moderno (Modern Archive), of course!

The Old Glasses Shop is not going to sell this range. We didn’t think you would want the chance to buy such historical and astonishingly brilliant glasses.

Just kidding! We are privileged to be launching Archivio Moderno on our site. We think the frames are genuinely stunning and they will sell because once you have experienced this level of design and quality you will never look back. No, really. Ideas such as

  • Arms that are superbly engineered to be easily extended from between 135mm to 160mm for your perfect fit.
  • Sunglass clip ons which fold so that they conveniently slip into a small pouch and your pocket when not in use (11 months of the year in the UK !). 
  • Build quality absolutely second to none.


One more thing. To celebrate this truly historic new brand, Archivio Moderno have create a 24kt Gold and Palladium plated model of which only 500 will be made and each is stamped with its own number. Not just a pair of fantastic glasses - a conversation piece and the culmination of 30 years of research. We have secured 4 - see the limited editions in the Archivio Moderno category HERE

As we always say at The Old Glasses Shop - Why Wear Ordinary? And in this case, you can so easily wear the Extraordinary!


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