Ask fashion worshiper’s who their favorite designer is and you are sure to see one name popping up time and time again: Tom Ford … Tom Ford … Tom Ford! To understand the reason Ford is such a fashion icon and the impact this plays in the eyewear and entire fashion industry, it is useful to first look at Tom Ford’s path to being credited as being one of the most influential designers of the last decade.
Ford’s path to fashion legend began when he moved to the New York as a teenager, and enrolled at the NYU in Art History. In 1986 Ford started his career with famous American designer Cathy Hardwick as a part of her creative staff; two years later, he became the Design Director for Perry Ellis. Ford did not stay at Perry Ellis very long before joining Gucci in 1990 as the Women’s Wear Designer and in an unprecedented amount of time Tom Ford climbed the ladder at Gucci and was appointed Gucci’s Creative Director in 1994.
This is where Tom Ford’s true genius showed. Before he began as Creative Director, the company was seeing stagnant sales and was losing market share. In Ford’s first year at the Gucci helm he was credited with putting the glamour back into fashion because of the pioneering fashion trends he introduced, such as the Halston-style velvet hipster’s. By 1999, the house, which had been almost bankrupt when Ford joined, was valued at about $4.3 billion. Gucci bought an interest in Yves Saint Laurent during Ford’s time there, and he was appointed their Creative Director as well. However, in an unexpected turn of events Tom Ford left Gucci and Yves Saint Laurent in 2004 after a disagreement over his contract. Since then Tom Ford has fallen off of the fashion industry’s radar…until now.
Tom Ford now emerges, as he launches a much anticipated sunglasses line. So why did Tom Ford choose sunglasses for his first solo project? When asked he responded “Well as far as accessories go, they’re a personal favorite…” If Tom Ford was going to do sunglasses we new they must be something truly remarkable and boy were we right. The sunglass line is a throw back to decades past, in particular most possess that sexy seventies styling that Tom has so successfully made his own. The frames have an oversized and retro feel and can’t help but remind you of an old Hollywood glamour. The sunglass colors are even reminiscent of the time with unique frame and lens colors such as various shades “Havana” and “Horn”. Even the style names are as evocative of the era as the designs themselves, Farrah and Ryan for example. But there are also frames named after Tom’s loyal assistant Whitney and his long-term partner Richard Buckley of Vogue Homme, that demonstrate the personal level on which this project has been carried out. Tom Ford has also created a number of Aviator sunglasses for Men such as Tom Ford Falconer or Tom Ford Hawking, which are completely distinct from your standard aviators. For example, Tom Ford Falconer is an over-sized aviator whose frame folds into its palm size case.
With Ford’s extensive celebrity following, his sunglasses have been showing up on the red carpet all over Hollywood. Many stores already have a huge backordered waiting list for many of the Tom Ford sunglass models. It appears that Tom Ford is back in the fashion industry, and in a big way, with his new line of sunglasses.