Exploring Naples - Handmade in Italy
Over the last 18 months I have been searching for a milestone that I set myself at the beginning of this journey - to create a durable and fashionable product out of the best materials, innovative components, and made by the best people for the job. Naturally as a small studio, the costs for us were a big factor in the beginning. There is no question that we're all trying to save a quick penny here and there. But as I thought more and more about the quality vs. price conundrum I learnt (what may seem blindly obvious to most of us) that quality comes at a price. I realised I had to listen to what I've learnt as a designer from the very beginning; It takes trial and error, investigation, and rounds of development to make the best products for anyone to use or wear. Often the idea that we come up with in the first place can become something drastically different as it moulds into a finished product. We've gone to many places and gone through many designs to get to this point. But, we've now found the techniques and artisans that can help us fulfil the MONC vision.
The principal I set out from the beginning was to design an incredibly fashionable item that was defined by the creative process of product designers. Hundreds of brands these days just have an object - no thought, no individuality, no story and no personality. The eyewear industry is a prime example of this: time and time again you see exactly the same design duplicated across many brands, to the point in which you sometimes think they're all made in the same place......... This was exactly what we wanted to avoid. It's definitely not the easiest way to go about it, but the best products and coolest accessories take time to create.
I went to Naples for a final chance to find the people who understand my goals, and help me to create what I've set out to create from the start. We have gone through seven or eight factories to get to this one - a small workshop near Napoli with a handful of experienced artisans who've been in this craft for over a century between them.
But, it's not only the artisans and their skills that craft these beautiful products, it's also the components and materials that engineer their quality. Our final range of colours is selected from hand made Italian acetates with amazingly deep and rich colour combinations. As well as providing the durability to stand the tests of time, the many small components that help our final pieces function, are both elegant and unimposing. (Perfect for when you forget your MONCs are in the back pocket of your jeans...) The investigation to find these materials and components has been long and arduous, but the knowledge I've gained so far has led us to an amazing first range.
So what can you expect from the upcoming range? Well, you will have to wait and see. When you go to a shop and pick up a piece of eyewear, your mind and senses analyse it without you even realising. It's weight, durability, feel, colour, balance and even smell are factors in your choice of something that you use and wear all the time. Why is it so important? Well these products are so definitive to you - they're part of your personality and style. Your glasses sit in front of your eyes - arguably the first thing someone looks at when they meet or greet you. Your personality defines who you are and how you experience life. That's why you have to step away from the lifeless items that clone one another, and why we've set out to design and create a range of products that make you look great, and feel confident. Keep an eye on our social media to see when you can pick up and feel a pair on MONCs for yourself.