From: Danny Spyra
Jul 22, 2010
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SABRE VP, Chris FrielJudging by this recent Southern California weather, you wouldn't be entirely sure it's Summer. But when the sun comes out, you pretty much only need one thing: sunscreen sunglasses. Enter SABRE.
Founded in 2006, SABRE provides cutting-edge eyewear at uber-reasonable prices. What started out as fashion-forward sunglasses has grown to include snowboarding goggles and even an optical line. Clean yet daring designs and subtle details distinguish SABRE from the rest. I hit up SABRE VP Chris Friel for the inside scoop. Calm the eyes, block the rays...the SABRE way.
- Danny Spyra
BNQT - CAN YOU GIVE US THE LOW DOWN ON HOW SABRE WAS STARTED? ALSO, WHERE DID THE NAME SABRE COME FROM?
Chris - Brooke McGregor, the founder & creative director of SABRE developed the idea for the brand while he was here in the states working for another brand. He teamed up ex-pro surfer & the best looking guy I know personally, Grey Day. I mean seriously, the guy is "easy on the eyes." It's like the kind of good looking you either befriend, or find a reason to hate, ya know? If you see this guy in a bar, rest assured you're not the best looking guy there. I'm talking like borderline ugly; that kind of good looking. To be honest it's mildly offensive. And that's basically how the brand was started.
No Control - part of the Fast Times collection
BNQT - SABRE IS BRINGING THE HEAT WITH ITS SUMMER 2010 LINE. CAN YOU TELL US A BIT ABOUT EACH COLLECTION - HIGH TIMES, FAST TIMES & REAL TIMES?
Chris - We decided to break the range into different collections to create some stratification in the line. It helped us to design with intent; meaning focusing on filling voids in the line or capitalizing on a style where we were having success. Basically, Real Times is our version of the basic plain white T shirt. The frames are wearable & classic. Fast Times is quick disposable fashion. We take a lot of risk with this collection as it best embodies SABRE's design ethos. High Times is our premium collection with limited numbers of each style being distributed to our customers. It features the highest quality materials, special detailing and fashion directional styling.
The Heartbreaker - MSRP of 105
BNQT - I'M REALLY FEELING THE NEW HEARTBREAKER FRAME. IT'S LIKE A MODERN WAYFARER STYLE WITH INCREDIBLE SUBTLE DETAILING. HOW DID YOU COME UP WITH IT?
Chris - The Heartbreaker has fast become our most anticipated frame to date. Brooke & the design team did a great job re-interpreting a style that has been replicated more times than anyone would like to admit. The interest level has been phenomenal.
BNQT - NEW TO SUMMER 2010 IS THE OPTICAL LINE. WHAT DO THE NO CONTROL & NUEVO BRING TO THE TABLE?
Chris - An RX offering was something we had kicked around internally for the last year but wanted to wait until the time was right to release it. As the collection grew we received repeated requests for it from our retailers and end users. We decided to pull the trigger and release a small offering for Spring / Summer followed up with 3 more frames launching in Fall / Holiday.
The El Gator - Gaga claims it
BNQT - THE EL GATOR SHADES LOOK LIKE SOMETHING OUT OF MAD MAX OR TERMINATOR. WHAT WAS THE INSPIRATION FOR THIS FRAME?
Chris - The El Gator is basically a follow up to the KOZOI, a frame we had a ton of success with last summer. We actually almost dropped it from the collection until all of the fashion publications and blogs picked up on Lil Wayne & Lady GaGa wearing the frame. We literally sold out of the frame overnight and have back orders on it that we still can't fill. It's the most viewed style we have ever had on our site. We get requests for it daily; it's taken on a life of its own.
The Easy Rider goggle - MSRP of 110
BNQT - YOU RECENTLY ENTERED THE GOGGLE MARKET. AFTER CHECKING OUT THE EASY RIDER, I'M REALLY IMPRESSED WITH THE FIRST COLLECTION. WHAT KIND OF FEATURES DO YOUR GOGGLES HAVE?
Chris - Our thought was to design and build a frame that looked as SABRE as possible. The goggle market is extremely competitive and most brands do a great job building a functional goggle with little regard of the frame tying back to the look of their collection. We tried to do both, meld our brand vision with function while not taking it too serious. Both the Easy Rider & Acid Rider feature dual polycarbonate scratch resistant anti fog lens & ventilation systems for optical clarity, thermo-polyurethane frame and layered, breathable, hypoallergenic molded face foam for comfort, but the true selling point is the design aesthetic.
BNQT - THE ACID ALOHA & CTRL PROVIDE FUNK TO A MORE-CIRCULAR FRAME. DID YOU CHANNEL SOME WARHOL STYLE WHEN DESIGNING THESE SHADES?
Chris - The Acid Aloha was intended to be an answer to all of the small women's frames currently on the market. Think old Hollywood glamour Breakfast at Tiffany's, etc. The CTRL was actually collaboration we did with a really cool brand out of Helsinki Finland by the same name. We saw some synergies between our brands and thought it would be cool way to meld the two creative visions. Their brand vision is similar to ours & I think it showed pretty well in the final product.
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