Sunday, November 14, 2010

Let's talk about specs, baby

After yesterday's wonderful walk around Davis Square, I decided that I wanted to go back today and buy myself a little somethin'-somethin' from a cute store in the vicinity. I saw this item yesterday and it immediately drew my attention, because I'm actually not one to  be tempted by novelty jewelry: I like it classical and "real," y'know? But...tiny glasses!

Yup, I bought myself a glasses necklace. When I saw it yesterday at the store, I immediately knew that I'd seen it before, and, indeed, it's for sale at Etsy. I like that Magpie buys things from Etsy for us to see in person before buying - I don't know, it was a thrill to recognize a lot of the pieces for sale at the store. Anyway, I still have no earthly idea what I'll pair this particular necklace with, but I like the bit of fun that it pokes at my geek-chic love.

Speaking of geek chic, I've been thinking a lot about my own glasses. As I've said before, I've worn glasses for quite a while. Since I was six. And for a long time, over ten years, I barely wore glasses and opted for contacts because I didn't like the way glasses looked on me. It took a very special tortoiseshell frame that changed my mind in the spring of 2008, and the Ray Bans I purchased in January only cemented my love for spectacles. And while I still love my square Wayfarers, I've recently caught myself fantasizing about what kind of pair I'll get the next time I need to get new glasses (which might not be for years or years, so, y'know, I'm not being that fickle). I've recently been drawn to the very classic horn-rimmed look: I've seen a few youngsters out and about in my neighborhood wearing them and they look awesome. Here's an example of the kind of thing I'd like:

They're called the Clubmaster! How can I resist that?! (I would also be open to the tortoiseshell frames in the same model)

My only hesitation is that I'm very much drawn to the heavy black frame generally, so it would be a very big change in aesthetic to go for something like this (I mean, I would have to try them on a dozen times, make my optician stroke my ego, and they would have to blow my mind the way no other specs have ever done so before). On the other hand, something I've found with my Wayfarers is that the bottom (i.e., the part of the frame that rests on my cheekbones) is getting rough with too much make-up/washing/rubbing. Even if I don't wear foundation/concealer in that neck of the woods (which I don't tend to), I still powder my face and the combo of powder and sweat/oil and plastic glasses ain't a good one. Wouldn't it be wonderful to not have to deal with that? Anyway, all of this is a moot point, as I don't have an eye exam scheduled till January and the odds of needing new glasses are slim. But my eye guy is a cool dude: maybe he'll let me try some stuff on...

(Oh, and I don't really subscribe to the idea of owning more than one pair of glasses at a time: I need them to go with EVERYTHING)

My preoccupation with all things glasses - including a new necklace - may strike some as precious and hipstery...I know that the kids have taken over cool, old-timey glasses, especially in the shapes that I cherish. But I refuse to apologize for my unashamed and unironic love of all things geek-chic. I've needed corrective lenses since I was six years old. SIX! That's twenty-three years ago! For so many of those years, I was told by society, the media, and Dorothy Parker (never by my parents, though, thank God) that glasses made girls look ugly and unattractive (granted, I also chose some questionable frames in my callow youth). When, in my 20s, I started noticing celebrities and models in very cool, nerdy, Buddy Holly-esque glasses, you can imagine that it made me sit up and take notice. For me, geek chic is the assurance that I can still be beautiful while retaining something that makes me very me. When, last year at work, I found out that I was known to some of the students as "The one with the Ray Bans," I couldn't have been prouder. 

Also? Dorothy Parker was wrong. Ha-HA!


  1. I adore me some Dorothy Parker, but the lady wasn't right about everything. Just most things.

    The Rocket Scientist and I just started watching Mad Men, and those glasses remind me so much of something one of the ad execs would have worn. Love 'em! And the necklace glasses remind me of something one of the secretaries would have worn. Love 'em, too!

    I've worn glasses since I was eight and, unlike you, never have gone the contacts route. I like how glasses make me look smart, are a constant accessory, and allow me to instantly switch the world into soft focus when I take them off. Now if only they didn't fog up when I come in from the cold...

  2. Other thing I don't appreciate? Glasses in the rain: I'm often the only person in sight holding an umbrella in light drizzle.

    I still haven't seen "Mad MEn," but I know that I should...

  3. 1. You HAVE to see mad men
    2. Nerd chic is hot when it's real. Nonprescriptors annoy me because I NEED them.
    3. When it was Magpie on Huron I used to sell my stuff there. They do consignment there.
    4. The owner (or founder) of the store also founded craftster.
    5. I like lists.

  4. 6. You're awesome.

    I really do want to see "Mad Men." With my 60s obsession, it seems like the perfect show for me (plus, Jon Hamm). I just want to watch it from the beginning, because I once started watching an episode just willy-nilly and I had no idea what was going on.