Woman wearing Garrett Leight California Optical oversized sunglasses looking up at the sun

Guide to Oversized Frames

Guide to Oversized Frames

What are oversized frames and what different styles are there?

WORDS: Ryan Ford, Abbot Kinney Lab Manager

What are oversized sunglasses and eyeglasses?

What comes to mind when you think about what an “oversized frame” is supposed to be? The answer usually depends on what decade you grew up in. The 60s had us swooning over Hepburn in Breakfast at Tiffany’s and the iconic Jackie O. The 80s were about pushing boundaries with what was possible in eyewear. When the world said you can’t put that on a frame, Jean Paul Gaultier, Christian Dior and Cazal answered: “Hold my beer.”


The aughts brought the advent of the “bug eye”, now synonymous with starlets and glamour. While the Olsen Twins sported massive black Chanel acetate similar to the Bubble Base Playa, the Hiltons were showing every day was summer vacation in Bvlgari Shields. Which, for the record, is the worst style in all of eyewear. If I never see another Shield as long as I live, I’ll be fine.

Here in the Teens our sunglass and eyeglass frames have brought it back full circle. Oversized frames are here to stay, but we’ve learned a lot along the way. You can be bold without being obnoxious. Make a statement without screaming. Glamorous without being gaudy. Pay homage to the classics while still creating something new.

Follow along as we break down the big guns in the GLCO arsenal.

What are the different styles of oversized sunglasses?

Metals


Tuscany and Valencia, sisters of minimalism. These frames are stripped down to what really matters in an oversized frame: silhouette. While Valencia’s round wire frames feel more Joplin, the square lines of Tuscany feel more chic.



Paloma shares much with the aforementioned frames, but is a touch more classic. The inner Windsor and coin-edge filigree add depth of detail to these oversized frames, while maintaining the lightness and effortless wearability.



Take a step in a more modern direction with Convoy and Zephyr. Both are large modified aviator glasses with a stylish silhouette that are able to stand out while maintaining an understated feel.

Acetates


A full-fledged chunky acetate wayfarer frame, Calabar captures the classic wayfarer frame with a new temple design inspired by 50’s car fins.. Oozing in this 50’s style, its shape is familiar but with meticulous design details that separate it from the standard.



The reigning fan favorite of dudes with big heads the world over, enter Bentley. An easy daily frame: equal parts stylish and utilitarian. This oversized frame’s slim profile is matched to a large proportion, making it the ultimate versatile frame.


Though intended to be a women’s flirty oversized optical, Milwood has been a standout unisex powerhouse frame. Customized for sun it’s a tailored, softer alternative to Brooks. As an optical,the Milwood checks all the boxes for women looking for a light minimal spectacle without wearing a metal.


Optical


Spring 18 brought two new players to the stage worth mentioning here, Pershing and Vista. Vista was re-released as a splashy optical cat eye, taking over as the new and improved retro cat eye frame of our time. Pershing, with its rimless mounting and large shape, wears whimsical and chic. These gorgeous and strong feminine pieces encapsulate each end of the spectrum effortlessly: bold and brazen, elegant and alluring.