What is the most underrated cosmetic enhancement? Eyeglasses.
THINK ABOUT IT
Millions of people wear glasses and yet most only have one pair, perhaps with a sunglass alternate. And yet, most people wear their glasses day in day out, in the offi ce, while working out, at a black-tie affair, and while just fl opped on the couch watching television.
Richard Mewha and Rick Nelson think about this a lot, which makes sense as they’re in the eyewear business and founded their own eye frame company, Bevel, in 1999. They’re committed to making eyewear as essential to personal style and self-esteem as apparel or cosmetics. After all, while wearing prescription lenses corrects an optical need, it also brings attention to a primary asset: the face. Eyeglasses are universal, not gender specific, easy to maintain, and play a crucial role in our lives and daily discourse.
During the 1990s, Richard and Rick were colleagues at the Optical Shop of Aspen (OSA) and began seeking out one anothers’ advice and relying on each other as sounding boards. Their professional friendship seemed unlikely aside from their name, on the surface they appeared to have little in common. Richard, with the easy demeanor of the international traveler, is English, loves living in New York City, and enjoys independent music and fi lm and classic literature. Rick, meanwhile, is a clean-cut all-american, born, raised and still residing in suburban Kansas City, having learned the fundamentals of the eyewear business working behind the counter of his fathers optical shop.
DESIGN PLUS SERVICE
The two recognized their differences would be a strength in establishing a business together. Through his work with OSA and Alain Mikli before that, Richard was confi dent his modern, minimalist design esthetic would appeal to customers. Both men were determined to create a company that opticians would enjoy dealing with. By establishing the headquarters in Kansas City, Rick knew he could fi nd employees with the midwestern warmth and sensibility to ensure outstanding customer service.
DESIGN, INNOVATION, EXCLUSIVITY
While Richard focuses on design, keeping up with the cultural zeitgeist, esthetic trends and opportunities for international growth, Rick ensures that all other facets of the business are running smoothly. Neither wants the brand to be the coolest or hottest or most recognizable. Instead they’re committed to maintaining a classic but minimalist esthetic, using truly high-quality materials with japanese production, and constantly seeking innovation so glasses look, fi t, and perform better.
A BEVEL LOOKING WORLD
Through it all they strive to meet their ultimate goal: to help people feel good about themselves by making them look great. If everyone wore bevel frames, the world would defi nitely be a better-looking place in more ways than one.