A look at retro and vintage frames

April 24th, 2010 by Randa Nahl Leave a reply »

Spectacles with temples have a history of less than 300 years, so many of the vintage and retro frames are still usable by today besides some for collectibles. Here let’s look at some of the historical retro frames which were available in the antique market.

The earliest retro frames can be traced back to 1700. The spectacles in 18th century may include early makers such as Benjamin Martin, Adams and temples inventor Edward Scarlett.

The collection of 19th century will be more extensive, which may comprise retro frame in sliding temples. At that time, American makers began to dominate the spectacles trade. American Optical Company invented the eyeglasses with cable temples in 1885 that used the curved loop to hook on the ears. The retro frame in this new temple started to spread and used by all makers.

During the two world wars United States made and shipped a lot of military eyeglasses to soldiers in the WWI and WWII. Retro frame marked with “Liberty” or “Victory” maybe from WWI, and the retro eyeglass frames in “Ovid Type” may be from WWII. The retro frame in this time is widely available in the antique market.

If you like precious metal, you may like the solid gold retro frame from 1850 to 1930 when people adored gold eyeglasses. Some of the gold retro frames can accept today’s lenses so that fashion and status conscious people may have a try.

You may also find early horn-rimmed retro frames, the earlier designer retro eyeglass frames of 1950s and 1960s, some rare and one-of-a-kind retro frame, and retro frames once worn by celebrities.

Related pages – Vintage Retro Sunglasses


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