Text Mio Hayashi

Formerly working as opticians, Barbara McReynolds and Gai Gherardi founded l.a.Eyeworks on Melrose Avenue in 1979, with an objective to improve the expectations that were present about eyewear at that time, which were bland, confining and limited. “We wanted to take a fresh look at everything. From how glasses were designed to the vast landscape of color, to how frames could be presented in a retail setting.”

Their main belief about eyewear is that beautifully designed frames transcend all the trends and can look modern in almost any context in any season. For this reason, their intuition guides their design process. Finding evidence from the environment and how people are evolving around them. “We make new collections to create the possibility of more and more meaningful intersections.”

For this season, they are working with several different core materials – acetates, aluminum, titanium on their own, as well as paired in different ways. Acetate designs feature complex layerings of transparent and opaque colors that reveal themselves through multi-plane cutaways. A custom sky blue and a soft sunny yellow were also developed, which are used as a finish for metals that will serve as a foundation in some of the designs.

For finding a great pair, they believe that freeing oneself from conventions is the first step, and this is where they see an importance of their work: giving people permission to ignore the rules and tune into their own expressive frequency.


7386 Beverly Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90036, USA
Phone +1 323 931 7795

7407 Melrose Ave.
Los Angeles, CA 90046, USA
Phone +1 323 653 8255


This article originally appeared in the DESIGN & MATERIAL issue // published in September 2015.