Luxury Fashion, Made Just for You

November 8th, 2018

Blink Optical is a one stop shop boutique for exclusive and illusive eyewear. From luxury brands like Cartier and Chrome Hearts, to rare brands like Morgenthal Frederics and Lunor, we’re proud to stock some of the most exciting frames in production today. Frames made with precision and care, by master craftsmen.

Recently, we began experimenting with our own custom created, limited edition eyewear. These frames are designed in house, using pre-fabricated hardware from luxury brands, and combining that hardware with new and exciting custom lenses. All lenses are cut and engraved on-site, ensuring complete quality control.

So far, we have had great success with our custom created, limited edition Cartier sunglasses. Each limited edition Cartier frame features re-purposed, high quality Cartier hardware, and precision engraved lenses when requested.

Every custom frame is produced following the client’s exact specifications and desires. The end result is a unique fashion item, unlike anything else on the market today.

If you’re interested in a custom Cartier frame, call or stop by Blink Optical today. We’re excited to create with you a new and singular pair of eyeglasses or sunglasses.

The Choice of Lens Technology is Clear

September 11th, 2018

Lens technology has evolved significantly since the early days of the reading stone. Reading stones were developed in the 9th century, developed during the process of converting sand into glass. A hemispherical lens placed on top of text to magnify letters, these stones were among the earliest applications of lens technology.

In the early 14th century, Dominican friar Giordano da Pisa wrote “It is not yet twenty years since there was found the art of making eyeglasses, which make for good vision. And it is so short a time that this new art, never before extant, was discovered. I saw the one who first discovered and practiced it, and I talked to him.” Friar Alessandro della Spina of Pisa, a colleague of Giordano, was soon making eyeglasses for the public, and not only for personal use.

By 1301, there were guild regulations in Venice governing the sale of eyeglasses, as the practice began to take hold. Early frames consisted of two magnifying glasses riveted together by the handles, so that they could grip the nose. The earliest surviving examples of these “rivet spectacles” were found under the floorboards at Kloster Wienhausen, a convent in Germany dating back to the 1400s.

Certain historians believe that the invention of the bifocal, necessary for sufferers of both myopia and presbyopia, preceded Benjamin Franklin. However, correspondence between George Whatley (a friend of Benjamin Franklin) and John Fenno (editor, The Gazette of the United States) suggests that not only had Franklin invented bifocals, but had invented them 50 years earlier than originally thought. Originally, bifocals were designed with the most convex lenses in the lower half of the frame, and the least convex lenses on the upper. Two separate lenses were cut in half, and combined. This led to a number of complications, and rendered the lenses fragile.

Here at Blink Optical, we uses a variety of different lenses, depending on customer preference. However, knowing lenses are not manufactured equally across the board, there is one brand that stands out among the rest. A brand we proudly suggest to all customers.

All Blink Optical customers have the right to choose the lenses they want, but after years in the business, our choice of lens company is clear: Shamir. Shamir lens technology is unlike any other. All Shamir lenses are carefully crated to suit anyone on the wide spectrum of eyewear needs.

An R&D-driven company, Shamir is a technological innovator in the field of optics. Its Freeform expertise and breakthrough lens design technologies make it a globally recognized leader in sports and occupational lenses, and custom designed lenses that ensure wearer comfort together with optimized visual acuity for virtually any prescription, in any shape frame.

So the next time you’re in our store, or if you feel like giving us a call, ask about Shamir. Live in the 21st century, not the 14th.

Paddle: America’s Most Dangerous Sport

August 30th, 2018
The Lake Forest Club
Lake Forest, IL

Paddle, or platform tennis, is not really America’s most dangerous sport, but injuries DO happen. From nicks and scraps and cuts and bruises to the odd broken and protruding bone, life on the raised platform involves risk. However, sometimes the most overlooked safety concern out on the court is eye protection.

Cue Rec Specs, from Liberty Sport.

Tested to meet and even exceed the strictest ASTM F803 impact standards, Rec Specs performance eyeglasses can withstand nearly any impact. They’re engineered to handle any prescription, so you get comfortable, durable protection without sacrificing sight or style. And even if you’re not a full time glasses wearer, Rec Specs frames can help shield your eyes from impact.

Don’t believe us? According to recent research, more than half of all paddle players experience an eye injury sooner or later playing the sport.

So the next time that yellow-green ball is flying at you and your life flashes before your eyes, remember Rec Specs. Available in-store at Blink Optical, and online at BlinkOptical.com.

Wobbly Parker

August 16th, 2018

As the old saying goes, “You get what you pay for.” Recently, many people have opted to give their eyewear business to a little upstart brand called Warby Parker. Warby Parker’s business model is simple: cheap eyewear delivered straight to your home. And while it’s just so fun to have everything brought to you and placed in your lap with minimal effort, when it comes to your eye care needs, convenience is a luxury you can’t afford.

Warby Parker and other businesses like it have three things in common: 1.) convenience, 2.) low prices, and 3.) accessible fashion. Want to know something all independent eyeglass retailers have in common? We all end up fixing your Warby Parker glasses eventually. They come cheap because they are cheap. Not only cheaply made, but intentionally made to break down over time. Why? You’ll come back again and again and again for a new pair and a new pair and a new pair because, hey, they’re just so affordable!

What you won’t get with Warby Parker and other online glasses retailers, apart from a difference in quality, is the personal touch that comes with a trained optician. A pair of glasses does not fit you like a pair of shoes. A trained optician knows what fits you best because they know what works best for your eyes. The impersonal touch of online eyewear retail means you could end up with a cheap pair of ill-fitting glasses that have a detrimental impact on your vision. Sure, they came right to your door, but now you have a pair of glasses that you can’t see through even when they’re not slipping off your face.

The choice is clear. Even clearer with our in-house, single vision lens lab. Stop by Blink Optical today, and let’s find something together that fits you right.

Made in the Shade at PGA Championship 2018

August 9th, 2018

The 2018 PGA Championship is in full swing, and for the 100th time in history, golf’s Wanamaker trophy is up for grabs. Well known favorites such as Tiger Woods, Phil Mickelson, and Rory McIlroy are all vying for the top prize, with Jordan Spieth chasing his career grand slam. Justin Thomas, however, is looking for a clean second-straight event victory this year while visiting the illustrious Bellerive Country Club.

For the active golfer, it’s hard to find sunglasses that offer comfort and dependability during a day on links. For Blink Optical, however, the choice is clear. Maui Jim is a stylish, dependable brand, with sunglasses that provide complete protection from the sun on those bright, sunny days.

Blink Optical carries a wide variety of Maui Jim sunglasses, available at our boutique location in Lake Forest, IL. At the moment we do not display our Maui Jim inventory online, but if you see something you like from Maui Jim elsewhere and you’re not sure where to buy it, give us a call at 847-234-6541. Alternatively, you can email and product inquiries to Yuri@BlinkOptic.com. At Blink Optical, we’re not here to tell you “no we can’t”, we’re here to tell you “here’s how we can”.

Bond in Cartier

July 20th, 2018

After a six year hiatus caused by legal disputes, and significant recasting of major characters, 1995’s GoldenEye introduced us to a new and improved James Bond: Pierce Brosnan. Originally slated to take the James Bond helm after Roger Moore, Brosnan was unable to break from his television contract, binding him to the show Remington Steele. Timothy Dalton would instead take the role, and play Bond for a total of two movies (the shortest Bond run second to George Lazenby’s one film). Brosnan is tied at four movies with current Bond actor, Daniel Craig, though this is soon to change in the next few years with Daniel Craig’s fifth and final performance as the globe-trotting, suit wearing, martini drinking MI6 agent.

During his tenure, Brosnan’s Bond faced off against a rogue MI6 agent, a news media magnate run amock, a high-tech terrorist trying to drive up oil prices, and a former North Korean army colonel trying to destroy the Korean DMZ. And while all of the plots sound exciting, only one of those movies proved to be an enduring James Bond classic. The last of the Brosnan Bond films, Die Another Day was released in 2002. Critically panned, the film left the future of the franchise in doubt, and brought Brosnan’s tenure as 007 to an unsatisfactory close.

Since then, however, the actor has had periodic success on screen, but more importantly success off screen as a man with great taste. Recently, he was photographed wearing the Cartier CT0035S.

This Cartier frame is constructed almost entirely of metal, with acetate end tips. And while Esquire magazine won’t tell you were to buy them, we will: Blink Optical.

Stop by the store today or check out the frame online for more information. Blink Optical is proud to be recognized as an authorized Cartier dealer, with many models of Cartier eyeglasses and sunglasses available.

Maradona Right to Believe in Messi

June 26th, 2018

As Argentina faced World Cup elimination in the Group Stage for the first time since 2002, previous Argentinian World Cup winner Diego Maradona rushed to the defense of current Argentine star Lionel Messi when it became clear that Messi was shouldering a lot of the blame for Argentina’s woes.

To Leo, I would like to talk to you and tell you that you are not guilty of anything, of absolutely nothing.

Which he then followed with:

I love you as always, I respect you as always.

Maradona, who managed Messi during the 2010 World Cup, opened the tournament with a cigar in his mouth and pair of flashy wayfarers shielding his eyes. And while much of the man’s behavior has been, well, questionable, during the tournament so far, there’s no denying that his belief in Messi proved correct.

The combination one-two punch from Messi and Marcos Rojo made for Nigeria’s undoing, ending their chance of being the first African team in the knockout round. From here, Argentina will face tournament favorite and Group C winner France. Only time will tell whether or not the team is prepared to go much further.

Now, we have no idea where Maradona would get such a pair of outlandish wayfarer sunglasses, but if there’s one concept Blink Optical is most assuredly built on, it’s not being afraid of trying something a little different. Within reason, of course.

Baseline, by ic! Berlin (col. Blue/Graphite)

ic! Berlin’s Baseline rides that edge between just enough and just too far. Measuring 69-2-145, this over-sized lens masterpiece might be too bold for the average man or woman, but is just what the doctor ordered for those with little to fear. With ic! Berlin’s patented screw-less hinges, light but strong stainless steel sheet metal body, and hybrid-rubber half-rim and temples, Baseline is unlike any other sunglasses frame out on the market today.

If you aim to be bold, be better than boisterous. Be Berlin, ic! Berlin.

Blink Optical: A House Divided by World Cup 2018

June 21st, 2018

Everything was going so well. The Blink Optical family was getting along, and all was at peace. That was until the World Cup came along, and that peace was dashed upon the rocks like a ship in the dark.

The conflict stems from a division over support. One half of the business is rooting for Germany, one half is rooting for Russia. And although Russia is 2-0 over opponents so far, and Germany shockingly lost to Mexico in their opening match, the author of this piece, dear reader, believes Germany might make it all the way to the end.

Germany v. Sweden will prove a decisive match. Most teams who lose their first match do not go far in the tournament, and while Sweden is up 1-0 over a win against South Korea, Sweden attacker Emil Forsberg has said, “We need to perform at 110 percent and do everything right or else it will be difficult to beat them, to even get a draw out of them.”

Regardless of how the rest of the tournament plays out for the German team, a different German team has already won a significant trophy recently: Lunor.

The Lunor eyewear team.

Lunor took home the German Brand Award for 2018, and knowing them like we do, it’s not hard to see why. For those in the know, Lunor helped put Blink Optical on the internet’s eyewear map. And while we are grateful for that, it all came down to Lunor’s attention to detail, style, and class. Blink Optical remains one of the only places in the United States where the infamous and illusive Lunor Classic Round (Rund) can be purchased. If you don’t believe us, just Google it. Time and time again, Blink Optical is the first name that pops up in both regular and image search (this blog included).

If you’re interested in Lunor, and would like to find out more, call 847-234-6541, or email Yuri@BlinkOptic.com. We carry several different styles in-store, but we’re happy to special order any frame of interest to you.

Blink Optical: if we don’t carry it, it’s not worth having.

Simona Halep and Sloane Stephens for French Open Final 2018

June 7th, 2018

World number one Simona Halep is within reach of her first Grand Slam title if she can defeat Sloane Stephens in this year’s French Open final. Over-taking 2016 champion Garbine Muguruza early on in the first set of their semi-finals match, the 24-year-old Halep “…started playing very well immediately and I wasn’t able to reach the level that she was playing at. It was just lightning,” said Muguruza. If she can maintain that same focus and intensity, she has a chance at securing victory over Stephens.

Sloane Stephens faced off against fellow American Madison Keys in her own semi-finals match, defeating Keys in two sets, making it a quasi re-run of last year’s US Open final. The match was also significant in that it was the first time two American women reached the last four at Roland Garros since 2002, when Serena Williams defeated her sister Venus in the final. Said of the match, Stephens remarked “It’s always hard playing someone from your country and your friend. I was pleased to get through that and play some good tennis.” She added, “This is one of my favorite tournaments. I’ve got another great opportunity on Saturday and I’m really looking forward to it.”

Marred only by the threat of a possible thunderstorm, the conclusion of the tournament this Saturday will be a hot, humid, and commensurately sunny affair. We can only hope tournament attendees are prepared for all that sunshine with any number frames from the French brands we currently stock here at Blink Optical.

Warda, by Caroline Abram (shown in col. 611)

Serena, by Caroline Abram (shown in col. 523)

Widana, by Caroline Abram (shown in col. 613)

Blink Optical carries a wide variety of Caroline Abram eyeglasses and sunglasses, as well eyeglasses and sunglasses from other French brands such as Face a Face, Anne et Valentin, Cartier, Lafont, Pierre, and Tehia. Stop by the store or visit our website to see more.

National Donut Day and the D.I.Y. Project You Didn’t Know You Needed

May 31st, 2018

For some reason, tomorrow is National Donut Day. The debate apparently “rages on” with regards to the proper spelling of donut/doughnut. It is the kind of debate and the kind of rage reserved solely for the terminally loathsome, and the pedantic at heart. To the rest of us, a donut, or doughnut, is not an object of disagreement, or tool for malice, but a simple and delicious ring made of flour, sugar, eggs, yeast, and love.

Dunkin Donuts and other noble baked goods suppliers will be providing free donuts on Friday, June 1st in celebration of this occasion, and while researching National Donut Day, we happened to discover that some people are choosing to celebrate the day by applying D.I.Y. donuts to their favorite round lens eyeglasses and sunglasses.

Website Brit + Co has created a helpful step-by-step guide on how to create and apply D.I.Y. donuts to your round lens frames. For your convenience, images are included below:

Materials Needed

Cut Donuts

Cut Out Donut Holes

Round Inside of Donut

Affix Donuts to Frames w/ Tape

Go Get Your Free Donut!

The cut-out donuts are available to print from the Brit + Co website, and as luck would have it, we just received a shipment of new and beautiful round lens eyeglasses and sunglasses from our friends at ic! berlin.

Alley-Oop, by ic! berlin (col. Dusky Pink/Pearl)

Midtown, by ic! berlin (col. Faded Mint/Rose Gold)

Skyline, by ic! berlin (col. Red Brick/Shiny Bronze)

Stop by Blink Optical tomorrow between 10am and 5pm with your round lens eyeglasses or sunglasses with affixed D.I.Y. donut cut-outs, and you will receive a FREE donut. Or, purchase a new pair of round lens eyeglasses or sunglasses, and get a FREE donut with or without the donut cut-outs.

Donuts only on offer while supply lasts, so arrive early!