STATE Optical Co., located right here in the Windy City, is the first factory to offer consumers American-made luxury eyewear to scale. Founded in 2014 by eyewear insiders Scott Shapiro and Jerry Wolowicz, along with self-taught craftsmen Marc Franchi and Jason Stanley, the four built the state-of-the-art factory with a mission of weaving classic American style with distinct nuancing into each pair of eyewear. To do this, they enlisted prominent American eyewear designer and Council of Fashion Designers of America Board Member Blake Kuwahara to create the perfect frames for both sun and optical collections.
Each pair of STATE frames takes two weeks and more than 75 distinct steps to craft, half of which are done by hand. Perhaps even cooler? Each frame design is inspired by and named after a Chicago street, like the Wolcott, Halsted and Dearborn frames. The company’s mark and certificate of authenticity, a pyramid of 21 dots that symbolizes Illinois as the 21st state, is also subtly incorporated into every frame. The collection retails between $325-410 and is available in 600 independent retailers across the United States. For more information, visit stateopticalco.com.
Photo credit: State Optical Co.