Since time began at NowUnknown we have been hot on the heels of the world’s best sunglasses designers. From New York to London, we’ve been traipsing around the world to find the best designer sunnies for men. Trying different frames, lenses and looks to find the ultimate summer shades. And we might just have done that with Monc.
We’d seen the name floating around our social media channels for a few weeks. The savvy digital marketers easing the brand into our subconscious. Then, at one of those tediously large fashion exhibitions, a stall caught our eye. A subtle sign sticking out from the masses. ‘MONC’ had materialised from our subconscious into a table and chairs and collection of sunnies.
A few days before I had found myself digging through the miscellaneous box in my man cupboard. You know the one. Stacked with the stuff you know you don’t want, won’t ever use, but can’t bring yourself to throw away. Here I found 3 pairs of sunglasses:
- A cheap pair of Turkish knock-off Ray-Bans I’d been forced to buy out there when my other pair had flown out of my pocket on a quad bike ride.
- A huge pair of face-huggers I’d bought in TK Maxx during a particularly cruel hangover.
- My snowboarding shades I used once in 2006 on a school trip.
They sit there unseen, unseeing. Sad and sunless.
So when I found the Monc sunglasses stall I thought: here I go. I can finally upgrade this tortoise shell trio and at least free up some space in that box.
Who Are Monc?
Founded in London in 2016, Monc sunglasses are designed by Freddie Elborne. With a history in graphic and 3D design, Freddie found himself despairing at modern throwaway culture. Products created to appease your immediate need, but no longevity, no consideration for the environment. (Ahem: my Turkish Ray Bans).
Talking about his design process, and the products themselves, Freddie pursuit is,
“Achieving and celebrating quality through the creation of long lasting lifestyle products, I’m proud in knowing that the products that we design and make support international and local artisanal makers, while creating a product that is desirable to our end customer.
At Monc, our vision is to continue to create compact, interesting product ranges with merit, supporting artisanal making and to show the story and inspirational people that come with it.”
The leather, the acetate, the hinges, the lenses. All are ethically and considerably sourced. Chosen for their quality as well as their price point. These are sunglasses that you won’t buy on a whim, but certainly they wont break the bank. (Frames start from around £175.)
The SS17 Range
Monc sunglasses SS17 range offers 5 different designs; Kallio, Södermalm, London Fields, Kreuzberg & Gràcia. Inspired by the places Freddie has travelled to and fallen in love with, each frame has their own character. A reflection of the lifestyle and culture found in the city. The London Fields are cool, hip. Sporting the much desired oblate frame shape, they are casual, class, chic.
On the other hand the Södermalms are more traditional in shape, but with accentuated wide wings; a reflection of Swedish design; twists on the tried and tested. Here are NKN’s top picks from the collection;
So enamoured by Monc sunglasses, we even took a couple of pairs away with us on our recent trip to Copenhagen to see them in a different light. The final verdict? Well, based on the amount of people stopping me in the street (it was weird), asking me where I got the shades – these are showstoppers. They not only do the business of, you know, protecting your eyes, but they create a scene. Cause reactions. Ooze style. Make a statement.
We really couldn’t recommend them enough.