Monday night was the launch party for Mondo Guerra’s collection of glasses for SEE eyewear. SEE has a unique concept for eye glasses – they defy typical (outrageous) designer prices by choosing emerging designers with exceptional talent. SEE is extremely choosy with the frames they carry and are unapologetic in their quest for perfection (who doesn’t love that?!). I chatted with SEE founder Richard Golden and he explained the company to me in more detail. They only allow 5 pairs of each frames to be produced – meaning you’re not going to catch other peeps running around in your frames (major score!)
As a specs-clad gal of 23 years, the discovery of SEE eyewear is especially fabulous for me. I have every pair of glasses prescribed to me since 2000, but I typically default to my beloved Warby Parker frames. I’ve rocked them for 11 months and as Golden told me, “they’re cute, but we can do way better.” Not only is this true (I swooned over bright blue AND leopard print pairs the whole night) but the fact I won’t see 100 other people running around SF with my glasses is enough to make me whip out my well-abused Amex right there.
As if the discovery of “fashionomically correct” frames wasn’t exciting enough, enter even better news – Mondo Guerra. For all my other Project Runway-addicted readers out there, it’s undeniable Mondo is one of the most influential designers to come off the show (not to mention my personal favorite!). He won hearts on Season 8 when he announced being HIV positive after the pattern-making challenge (one of his most gorgeous pieces). He was robbed of the 1st place winner spot on that season (in all my years of Project Runway I have never seen/heard such outrage from other fans regarding the winner vs. runner up!). However, Mondo came back with an absolute vengeance and wowed audiences with his designs on Project Runway: All Stars. Nabbing the winner title he received the biggest prize known to the show ($100,000 cash from L’Oreal Paris; $100,000 dollars in technology and office space from HP and Intel; the chance to sell his collection with Neiman Marcus stores; an editorial spread & one year guest editor position for Marie Claire magazine; and a sewing and embroidery studio provided by Brother International – GO MONDO!)
Mondo’s eclectic, polished style is known to portray bold colors, black and whites, multiple patters, checkers, polk-a-dots and color blocking. It’s no surprise Mondo and SEE make such a perfect match; he’s a long-standing client of SEE eyewear (he owns over a dozen pairs!) and both are advocates for AIDS research. A portion of all sales from “Mondo by SEE” eyeglasses will be donated to amFar, an international organization dedicated to ending the global AIDS epidemic. SEE eyewear is a large supporter of the AIDS community having contributed to the AIDS walk in Detroit for a decade, to name one organization. Given the fashion and the cause, I can’t wait to get my hands (and eyes) on a pair of specs from Mondo’s SEE collection.
The event was well-attended by SF’s fashion finest. Representatives from Refinery29 and The Examiner were in attendance, among many others. I decided to wear a cropped plaid jacket à la Mondo (well-thought out, since he loved it and we talked extensively about autumn plaid!) and draped myself heavily in Sasha Maks Vintage, my staple for fashionista events. The zebra necklace brought much excitement and conversation (so many people commented on it!!) but I really loved the textured and faux pearl bracelets. Deck my wrists in chunky gold and I am a happy lady!
Though my heart is still swooning over meeting one of my favorite designers, the whole overall event brought a lot of talent. I look forward to seeing more, and stay tuned for my feedback of NYC fashion week (can’t wait to dissect what’s been coming down the runway!)