Standing out at the Adlens booth this week at the International Vision Expo & Conference eyecare trade show at the Javits Center was the Oxford, England-based manufacturer’s new John Lennon Collection, patterned after the iconic Lennon round frames and employing Adlens’ variable focus technology.
The collection comprises 11 designs in three ranges: four sunglass models, four optical, and three making up the color-tinted Imagine Collection.
“He was often photographed with blue or yellow-y orange tints,” says Christine Fraser, Adlens’ director of customer success, speaking of Lennon and the Imagine Collection frames.
“They’re quirky and fun,” she continues, noting that the blue and orange/yellow lens tints come in clear frames, “and then there’s a [red frame and lens tint] ‘sunset’ frame. They’re all about the groovy ‘60s!”
All of the Lennon frames also employ Adlens “variable focus eyewear” technology, virtually making them “instant prescription eyewear”: Utilizing fluid-injection technology, the power of each lens can be adjusted independently with the turn of a dial. Once set, the system is sealed permanently by removing the dials and applying matching endcaps.
Adlens showed other variable focus glasses at Vision Expo, including its Emergensee brand designed for use as a temporary, instantly customizable spare pair.
The Lennon Collection, meanwhile, also falls under the company’s “modern technology meets legendary styling with a social conscience” philosophy. Founded in 2005 by Hong Kong businessman and philanthropist James Chen, Adlens has a “Buy One, Give One” charity program whereby for every pair of fluid-injection glasses purchased, it donates a pair to someone in the developing world via Vision for a Nation, a charitable foundation providing universal access to eyeglasses, one nation at a time, starting in Rwanda.
“We’re ‘a commercial business with a social soul,’” says Fraser, reciting an Adlens motto.
“John Lennon was a 'thought leader,'” she adds. “He was outwardly thinking as opposed to being internally focused. He had a social conscience, and we have social conscience.”
True, Adlens is a commercial business, Fraser notes. But having “a social soul” has major commercial benefits.
“Our job is to make creative eyewear that people love to wear, using technology that gives them a real tangible benefit,” she explains. “If we can make eyewear that people love to wear and is affordable and addresses real consumer needs, and if we make it easy for the industry to do business with us—then our product will succeed and our business partners will succeed, and ultimately we’ll succeed, and our charity will succeed.”
With the John Lennon Collection, at least, Adlens has the backing and blessings of Yoko Ono.
“From product to artwork, we have to send everything to Yoko for approval,” says Fraser. “She loves the brand, and thinks it’s a great fit for John and what he stood for—the ethos and fun. And she thinks John would like it!”
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