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Eyewear in London is a serious business, and there’s a fine line between looking like a cliché and looking genuinely fabulous. Thankfully there’s some excellent shops in London, offering custom, vintage and generally trendy frames. For advice on where to buy your next pair, look no further than Culture Trip’s guide to the best glasses shops in London.
Located in the depths of Camden’s Stables Market, General Eyewear is a little-known retailer worth investigating. Their perfectly curated shop offers an impressive selection of vintage frames from their historical archive. Ranging from 1810 to 1995, these frames have featured in films such as The Imitation Game (2014), as well as offering a unique look for potential customers. All of General Eyewear’s contemporary frames are designed in their Camden office, and they also offer bespoke consultations for customers. With a new store in Soho coming soon, this is a need-to-know name for any glasses aficionado.
Following on from the success of their pop-up shop on Redchurch Street, HOOK LDN have just launched their first stand-alone shop on Kingsland Road. Specialising in contemporary, sleek design, HOOK LDN make glasses to obsess over. Their shop will also host guest clothing lines, offering a space for customers to come and hang out in and develop their own, individual look.
Founded in 2012, Cubitts was one of the first glasses brands in London to make their own frames and emphasise the bespoke nature of eyewear design. Their handmade pieces come in a range of styles, with a service that starts with a consultation and finishes with a pair of spectacles that are uniquely yours. Alternatively you can choose from their off-the-shelf unisex styles, and there’s a wide selection of sunglasses too.
Launched in 2007, Lunettes London started their brand from a market stall in Notting Hill. Now based east, the brand offers an extensive range of vintage frames, from 1940s styles to statement pieces from the 1970s, and a swathe of eccentric and über trendy pieces in between. Their sunglasses are super cute too, offering on-trend 1990s frames and cat-eye styles from the 1950s.
Founded over 25 years ago, the Eye Company in Soho has been championing independent eyewear for a long time. Offering bespoke frames as well as collections from boutique brands, The Eye Company’s philosophy is to make wearing glasses a blessing rather than a burden, and a visit to their Wardour Street shop certainly achieves this goal.