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  • Friday 9am - 5.30pm
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13th October 2021

PERSOL – a century in style and on screen, the brand which brings fresh collaborations to the fashion landscape

Persol Sunglasses (2)

‘Persol has forever secured its position as the coolest sunglasses manufacturer known to man’
GQ Spring 2021

‘Persol and JW Anderson are known for their unique, contemporary design vocabularies’
Teen Vogue US Summer 2021

Some labels have very visible logos. For Persol, established in Italy over a hundred years ago, none is needed: it’s simple, discreet silver arrow is all that is required, and instantly recognisable to everyone who adores their eyewear. From its humble beginnings in Turin, where the perfect sunglasses were created for fighter pilots and racing drivers, Persol now has a whole heritage of creating models which are known for one thing more than anything else: class.

Of course, one person in particular helped elevate Persol into a label which could match other fashion brands and luxury goods names, making sunglasses just as an important part of the look as any other item on show, and that was Steve McQueen. It’s now 53 years since he wore his Persol 714s filming The Thomas Crown Affair, which was a change of pace for action man McQueen. As the world’s most stylish thief, McQueen helped create a modern screen legend whose look is still referenced and admired today. Every single part of Crown’s wardrobe screams chic, from the tailored suits, to slim sweaters, Harrington jackets and immaculate suede boots. The Persol sunglasses were a vital part of the ensemble, and are still part of the brand’s collection today, and ours here at Blankstone: with a variety of colourways and optical shades to choose from, they are contemporary, beautifully engineered, and have that foldaway feature that helped make them famous.

Since Hollywood’s most revered king of cool made Persol famous around the world, they are certainly the shades that are adopted by noted names who want to look good, but without trying too hard. From Jay-Z, to Ryan Gosling to Emma Stone and absolute legends like Leonardo Di Caprio and Julia Roberts, they have an easy going aesthetic which sits above Persol’s handmade, highly-engineered status.

As for more modern screen heroes, they don’t get more scene-stealing than Daniel Craig, as 007, who sported them in his first Bond outing, Casino Royale. More recently, Lea Seydoux wears Persol in Spectre: she is every inch the modern Bond woman, and more than a match for the world’s most infamous spy, style-wise and otherwise.

In real life, you don’t get much closer to McQueen or Bond’s style status than David Gandy, probably still the world’s most influential male model, now also a designer in his own right, and a collector of all things beautiful, including classic cars and vintage, covetable watches. Whether in denim or Saville Row tailoring, his love of Persol frames creates the type of image that quietly whispers ‘modern gentleman’ to the world.

However, Persol do love to throw in a curve ball, and while they are known for classics, they do love to work on collaborations which connect them to fashion, film, music and art. Over the summer, their launch with directional British designer, JW Anderson, provided a colourful backdrop to a whole new generation of style watchers. Photographed by Tyler Mitchell, the campaign has a street-chic, London appeal. We’ve loved having our own exclusive picks from the range in store.

And no modern brand would move forwards without another we have spent the last 18 months hunkered down with: Netflix! Star of our October window displays, Persol’s collaboration with hit show Casa de Papel, is sleek, sharp and just the ticket if you are masterminding bank raids (on screen of course!) or something far more suitable, but just as stylish in real life.  These showstoppers are handmade, unisex, and made from Persol’s ingenious recipe: a blend of acetate and cotton pigments, using a secret combination only Le Profesor could lift from their HQ.

We love being a part of Persol’s heritage: they are a brand we could wax lyrical about every month. They constantly surprise us, and because they are an eyewear-only label, the time, care and effort they put into their ranges never fails to shine.

The only thing to do next? We think you have to try them on in person, and it is an occasion worth getting dressed up for. And as we are situated near some of Liverpool’s newest and most exclusive restaurants, feel free to wear them to lunch.

There are a few banks dotted around the area, too. Please don’t get any ideas on that front, though. Leave the bank heists on screen, and live your best life on this side of the law.

You know, it makes perfect sense.

You can view our Persol collection online or please feel free to come and visit Mark and the team in store to browse, try on, and just get a sense of this brand’s beautiful styling, heritage and finely-detailed pieces.

Additional images courtesy of Persol/ Persol X JW Anderson/ Pinterest