Ninety years of experience, unparalleled expertise with an emphasis on elegance and strong family values – all backed by a name you can depend on: Lafont. Glasses made in France that have made Parisian chic accessible.
Autumn 1923. Rue Vignon in Paris’s Madeleine district. Louis Lafont sets up a small boutique selling hearing aids and spectacles. For three generations, the great-grandfather’s art deco spirit has set the standard when it comes to designing eyewear. Philippe, Louis’ grandson along with his Parisian fashion designer wife Laurence transforms spectacles into a genuine fashion accessory. The couple produced many innovative products and collaborated with major fashion houses such as Hermès and Chanel. This Paris institution now operates four boutiques under its own name and exports to over forty countries.
By the end of the 70’s, their elegant, innovative frames are attracting the attention of fashionistas in the rue Cambon.
Lafont – Superb Parisian optical eyewear with over ninety years of experience. Unparalleled expertise with an emphasis on elegance and strong family values – all backed by a name you can depend on: Lafont. Glasses hand made in France, making Parisian chic accessible worldwide.
P H I L I P P E
Co-founder and CEO of the brand. Distinctive trait: Exclusively wears round and P3 shapes for over 35 years. Passion: Literature, cooking, and tending to his garden.
T H O M A S
Creative Director of the brand, part of the Lafont design team since March 1998. His favorite model: The next one he will design Distinctive trait : Has a love for shoes and in his own words: Owns too many bikes.
M AT T H I E U
Joined the company in June 2005, Director of Communication and Marketing. Favorite quote: “It is truly useful since it is beautiful.” Antoine de Saint Exupery The Little Prince.
EXPERTISE & VALUES
Traditional eyewear craftsmanship combined with high-tech, modern French manufacturing techniques. The Lafont family has retained full control of its creative design activities and brand image since 1923 through its design studio, which is currently managed by Thomas Lafont. Like a true optical fashion house, Lafont unveils approximately 30 new models each season. Each season’s offerings include sleek, smart and tailored frames for men, luxurious feminine pieces for women and fun whimsical styles for children.
30 GRAMS – Weight of an average pair of glasses.
39th Departement du Jura – Location of manufacturing for our frames. The factory is situated in the Jura region in France.
95% Of the collection is handmade in France.
330,000 – Frames manufactured per year.
200 – Operations required to produce one pair of glasses.
120 – Models in a new collection.
234 – Unique colors in the Lafont collection. 80% of which are exclusive to Lafont.
100 pairs of eyes examining each detail during the manufacturing process.
A DESIGNER EYE
Six questions for chief creative director Thomas Lafont.
What are your sources of inspiration?
I have many, all very diverse and eclectic. Inspiration is something that needs to be nurtured as well. Similar to an athlete, inspiration and creativity requires training. My sketchbook never leaves my side; it enables me to put down on to paper my ideas and thoughts that come – whether it be during an art exhibition, a vacation with my family or even during a meeting with co-workers the creative processes never stops! This constant inspiration and expression requires curiosity and an inquiring mind.
How is a pair of glasses designed ?
It all starts with a sketch. My initial ideas and the unique features of the frame begin to come to life on paper. I then produce a technical scale drawing that forms the basis for the work carried out in the factory.
How long does it take to make a pair of glasses?
Not many people know that manufacturing a pair of glasses takes 8 to 14 weeks and involves 120 to 220 successive ope¬rations, depending on the complexity of the product. Most of these processes are manual, some of them are automatic.
The distinguishing features of a pair of high-quality glasses?
The precision of its assembly, the attention to detail of its finish, the balance of design and the uniformity along with harmony of the colour scheme.
What qualities exemplify a great pair of glasses?
Style and comfort in everyday use. A pair of glasses is not just an accessory; it provides the first hint of an individual’s personality. The wearer must enjoy a frame and feel that it is completely consistent with his or her look and mindset. A great pair of glasses, with all its detail and complexity must above all be an extension of the individual.
Your most beautiful model?
The next one!
MADE IN PARIS
Lafont eyewear collections all have one thing in common: a subtly re¬bellious, discreetly avant-garde touch of refinement. Over 200 colour combinations and a selection of unique mix-and-match materials: tartan or Liberty print fabrics sandwiched between two sheets of acetate, panther designs, horn and tortoise shell. Each frame is full of surprises! A deep rooted heritage of French culture and tastes is seen through the works of art created in the workshops of Jura.
The brand’s expertise and commitment to impeccable quality are now sought after by clients not only in France but worldwide.
Parisian Flair – For over 90 years good taste and a certain “je ne sais quoi” have been the hallmark of the Lafont brand, its boutiques and of course their distinguished creations.
Independent styling accomplished through innovative techniques and traditional know how. Designs, patterns and colors all intended to surprise and delight the wearer with effortless chic.