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06-12-2009
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beauxgoris's Avatar
 
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Persol sunglasses
Since Ray-Ban and a few others have their own thread I was hoping we could talk about classic Persol sunglasses.

I love the look as an alternative version to wayfarers. Also they have quite a history:

"The persol 649S, created in 1957, became instant legend when Marcello Mastroianni wore them in the Pietro Germi film "Divorce Italian style". A favorite of Steve Mcqueen’s both on and off the screen. 1994's French book "qualita: scenes d'objects a l'italienne" declared it one of the objects most representative of the Italian genius of yesterday and today. "

I have been loving the ultra classic 649 and the 714 Steve Mcqueen sunglasses. I've been reading that they come in both "52" and "54" size versions. I'm unsure about what size to purchase. I was hoping others could post photos of their Persol sunglasses or photos of them wearing their Persol's. Here are the glasses:

Here are the non-folding version:








folding version:




photo credit: eyegoodies.com

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06-12-2009
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Steve Mcqeen:


photo credit: www.skylighters.org

"Persol Model 649s, designed for tram drivers in Turin who needed large glasses to protect their eyes against wind and dust, first hit the stores in 1957.

The uniqueness of the 649 design made it an instant success, and many knock-offs were created by Persol's competitors.

Persol, founded in the early 1920s, started out making aviator glasses for the Italian Air Force and racing googles for the legendary Italian driver Fangio. In 1961 Persols became iconic when Marcello Mastroianni wore them in the film "Divorce Italian Style."

The 649's lenses are made of real crystal and have the Persol trademark arrowhead etchings in the corners. The collapsible frames also sport the patented "Meflecto" joints, Meflecto GTOs to be precise.

The particular Persols McQueen wore in that ultracool crime caper "The Thomas Crown Affair" were actually customs, with icy blue lenses, made by Hollywood eyeglass designer Dennis Roberts. Roberts, the owner of Optique Boutique, made 800 (not a typo!) pairs of sunglasses for McQueen alone in his lifetime, many of them riffs on the popular Persols. He also created outlandish eyeware for Elton John, Elvis Presley (including the famous TCB glasses), one-eyed Black Rat Packer Sammy Davis, Jr., Jimi Hendrix, Liberace, Peter Sellers, Bobby Darin, Cary Grant, Jim Morrison, and John Belushi (the yellow-tinted "Bees"), among others.

If you run across a pair of 649s in your own attempts to be like Steve, check for the word "Ratti" on the temples — this identifies the original factory at which Persol used to manufacture their sunglasses, and is an indicator that you have your hands on an "original" — made before Persol was sold to mass manufacturer Luxottica. Only on the older, true vintage pieces, will you find the words "Ratti" inscribed on the stems."

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06-12-2009
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The black on Michelle Williams:










photo credit: michellewilliams-fan.com

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06-12-2009
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I've always wanted a pair of tortoiseshell Persols, but they are too narrow for my face.

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06-12-2009
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Excuse my crazy face


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06-12-2009
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Thefrenchy - thank you for posting a photo. Those look fantastic on you! What size are your glasses? 54 or 52?

Thanks so much!

p.s. I wear Ray-Ban wayfarers in the "54" size - I'm just worried that these might look too big on me in that size. However the smaller version on Michelle Williams (above) look too small for my giant head..... Just not sure.

Does anyone know what size the "original 714" was? (Steve Mcqueen's version)


Last edited by beauxgoris; 06-12-2009 at 06:20 PM.
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06-12-2009
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Thank you They're 52

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06-12-2009
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sweet! they are gorgeous. very italian indeed

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06-12-2009
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I wonder why they look so tiny on Michelle Williams?

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11-12-2009
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bump

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14-12-2009
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I love these glasses, but they keep sliding down my nose. I wonder if there's anything I can do to correct this?

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16-12-2009
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I went with these:



image: eurosunglasses.com

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23-12-2009
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ugh - I'm so bummed I can't keep these on the bridge of my nose (I have a tiny nose and the bridge area on these glasses is quite thick/heavy). Any suggestions? Someone mentioned going to a eyeglass store and having them bend the arms so they curve behind my ears more - but I'm worried it will pinch and give me headaches.

sigh

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02-01-2010
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there's definitely a 'cool' factor with this brand...in a groovy vintage sort of way....
but- they really don't look good on everyone...
i have tried several styles over the years and haven't ever found one that works on my face...

so these are a 'no go' for me...


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04-01-2010
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So I switched sizes and that seemed to help. I had "52's" but traded in for "54's" and they go with my face much better. I do have to have the back ear pieces adjusted though so that they still don't slip down at all. They remind me of wayfarers - but more grown up... cooler - or maybe just more elite since they're less known. (but I still love all my ray-ban sunnies too!)

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