In 1983, Mel Rapp of Toronto, Canada began creating his unique vision of eyewear. His collection, known as rapp, has evolved quite a bit since then, but he has kept intact the concept of “old-fashioned work ethics and modern technology.” While in New York this year at the Vision Expo, we learned that Mel and his team of 5 hand-craft (truly handmade, not just a claim), assemble, and finish each piece. They complete maybe ten pieces per day. This is unheard of in the industry. The result, however, is art. These are very limited shape and color combinations, some of which we only ever see once. Truly unique! Here are some of the new pieces that just arrived. Click on any of them for full view.
…and there are many more to see and try on. Stop by Specs Optical before they are all gone!
It is inevitable that every year….oh, about a day or two before Halloween, we start getting panicked clients calling or stopping in, trying to find just the right pair of specs to complete their Halloween costume. So, here are a couple of early suggestions for pieces that might just do the trick:
Above left: The Dita Flight-S. A fun flashy aviator sunglass to complete your Top Gun pilot get-up (always an easy standby costume choice.) Above right: The Rapp Rosalind. A dramatic sculpted cat eye to perfect your naughty secretary or 60′s diner waitress outfit. It is currently available in 8 colors!
Below: RetroSpecs R#3305 by American Optical. This is a real deal vintage original, not reproduction. Ideal for all those Mad Men enthusiasts. Or, pair them with a lab coat (perhaps blood-stained) for a mad scientist look.
….and there are countless other possibilities. Let us know if there is a specific look you are working on. Otherwise, come see us soon, if not just for a Halloween treat. You may even catch one or more of us in costume. Have a happy and safe Halloween!
Lyle Jackson and Ellen Roeder of Tulle and Dye, as seen in the Star Tribune. Article by Kim Ode photo by Tom Wallace.
This caption from the article celebrates people still doing custom hand made goods. Lyle is connected to SPECS OPTICAL in oh, so many ways. Tulle and Dye’s work has been out there, notably for several years in the form of the costumes for Daytons/Marshal Fields/Macy’s holiday displays, theater and dance in Minneapolis and New York, including James Sewall Ballet, Zenon Dance Company, and Alvin Ailey. Tulle and Dye also did the costuming for Grey Gardens and Rocky Horror Show for the McKnight Theater, and you can see their work in “Beauty and the Beast” at the Ordway this December. OK… I have to brag, because I did a little teeny tiny part of a costume for the show. And…as one might guess…it is sparkly.
Lyle is wearing one of my favorite brands, Mel Rapp. Mel, a Toronto designer, also embraces the art of hand made crafts. Unlike the above tutu, it should not cause chafing!
It’s always exciting and humbling for us to see our work out there, like the cool Specs on Juliette, just up the street at the Terrace Hair Neon Beach and so many others in the neighborhood. It gives us goose bumps to see “hand made” thrive in the Twin Cities. In our small way, we try to emulate those same values here at SPECS OPTICAL .
Carry on friends!