Iconic spectacle designer discusses the stars behind the frames

Oliver Goldsmith at the National Glass Centre.
Oliver Goldsmith at the National Glass Centre.

One of the world’s most iconic spectacle designers gave an eye-opening talk about the famous glasses and the famous faces who wore them at the National Glass Centre on Friday.

Oliver Goldsmith gave a free talk on April 25 discussing the eyewear created by three generations of his family and the influential personalities who wore them, from Princess Diana, Audrey Hepburn and Grace Kelly Princess of Monaco to Michael Caine and Peter Sellers.

Since January, the iconic spectacle designers have had a major exhibition at the National Glass Centre, featuring the eyewear created and photographic works of the famous faces who wore them.

Oliver Goldsmith Ltd Spectacles and Sunglasses are synonymous with style and celebrity. Thanks to their innovative designs and dedication to quality, their frames became trend setters in the latter half of the 20th Century.

Working with fashion houses like Dior and Givenchy, the spectacles and sunglasses graced the faces of some of the most influential personalities to impact fashion trends of the day.

Neil Handley, Curator of the British Optical Association Museum at The College of Optometrists also gave a talk about the mechanics of optometry.

Goldsmith discussed how the glasses became so popular; the famous faces who wore them and the reasons behind the designs.

He said: “When I received the call to say National Glass Centre was interested in an exhibition of my glasses, I was more than happy to collaborate. I have an archive of over 600 designs, so I was over the moon to have them on display.

“When I arrived at National Glass Centre and saw this exhibition for the first time I was blown away.

“I never thought anyone would do such a wonderful exhibition for me, and I have been boasting about it on social media ever since.

“My favourite designs were on Michael Caine, the Consul, which he wore for film The Ipcress File, and the Vice Consul which Peter Sellers wore outside of his film work.”

The Spectacles – The Oliver Goldsmith Collection has been on show since January 18 and the exhibition runs until this Sunday, May 4, at the National Glass Centre.

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