It’s an old story: two childhood friends, Manolo and Antonio get together and decides to create their own brand of eyewear, sustainable, ecological, perfect, but this time, they’re from Malaga and they call it LaVeta Eyewear.
The two started out in different fields but for this task were united by their passion for urban culture and a clear concern for protecting the environment.
LaVeta is made in Andalusia, and that’s their signature, Hecho en Andalucía. Their pieces are timeless, fun, and best of all, made to last, with a wide range of interesting designs, as you’ll see.
Along the way, they’ve made eyewear in collaboration with Tarxia, a company in Granada that works with inlay, an artisanal technique that uses cut pieces of different materials such as wood and metal in a base to form decorative designs.
At So Catchy! Where Fashion Begins, we are supporters of all things authentic, artisanal, and ecological and anyone with a clear passion for their ideas. LaVeta Eyewear, from here on out, is on our list of essential slow fashion brands.
SO CATCHY!: How did the idea come about to create a line of wood glasses, made in Andalusia?
LAVETA EYEWEAR: We’d been thinking about making a designer product that was ecological, made of wood and that would include traditional artisanal techniques together with modern day technology. So we studied some of the things that were out there and we realized that glasses say a lot about the people who wear them; they’re the most visible accessory you can wear.
SC!: What was it like to create a brand and to begin production of your glasses? Did you receive any grants or subsidies from Andalusia, Spain or Europe to set up the project?
LV: The process wasn’t easy. On the one hand you have the challenge of creating, from scratch, a quality product, and on the other you have to set up your business with all of the complications that come with that. We haven’t received any public grants or subsidies of any type.
SC!: Where do you get the wood for the glasses?
LV: We buy it in Spain although we do use some wood from other parts of the world. We always make sure that the suppliers comply with all of the environmental requirements like where it comes from, if it’s from a sustainable source and so on.
SC!: What kinds of people buy your glasses? Is there a specific profile?
LV: Actually, we don’t believe that there is one specific type of person but people who appreciate design and the artisanal work behind each piece. We can say that on average, our customers are between the ages of 35 and 40.
SC!: Can you make ends meet with Laveta alone or do you have side projects that you work on?
LV: We are currently working100% on Laveta Eyewear. In fact, we wish that days were longer so we could do more to develop the brand. It’s nice when everything comes out the way you want it and people show the same passion for our work that we do.
SC!: What makes Laveta different from other brands that also use wood for glasses, including other Spanish brands?
LV: The difference is in the way we select each piece of wood for the frames; each piece is unique. And then there are the designs, the finishing and the packaging that makes Laveta stand out from the rest. Doing things with great care is what really makes us stand out.
SC!: What was your collaboration with Tarxia like? How did it come about?
LV: It was very natural, a perfect combination. Tarxia has really changed the game with traditional inlay from Granada; they use the artisanal process to make cases for smartphones. The values and philosophy that we share made it easy to create a unique collection and we’re very happy with the results. Laveta x Tarxia is a partnership that will continue for a while to come.
SC!: What do you think Laveta brings to fashion sunglasses?
LV: We work with the intention of creating pieces that evoke some kind of emotion.
SC!: It’s been awhile since you’ve come out with something new, what are you up to now? What are you looking to do in the near future?
LV: Right now we’re working on the launch of our third collection. We’ve got a few new models and we are trying to innovate and create something different. At the same time, we’ve been updating our website, our catalogue and lookbook.
SC!: We love the fact that you work with sustainable materials and make your glasses by hand in Andalusia. It’s a trend that we’re seeing more and more; promote local consumption and concern for the environment. Do you see yourselves as pioneers in the growing movement?
LV: We don’t see ourselves as pioneers at all but we are happy to see that there is an upswing in support for high quality, local and environmentally friendly products. Fortunately, people are more conscious nowadays of the fact that the way we consume also has an effect on our relationship with the world. Many of us no longer want to be accomplices to the exploitation and destruction of the environment and so we’re betting on a product that is both socially and environmentally sustainable.
All images courtesy of Laveta Eyewear
Translation and Layout by Michael Padilla