Saturday, January 29, 2011

Vintage Pince-Nez Ads

My colleague was kind enough to send me a fantastic book entitled "Advertising in the Retail Optical Business" printed in 1912 by the Page Publishing Company. It was a different world back then. No tv advertising and celebrities were not the main attraction in advertisements. The products actually had to stand on their own merits.

Shown below is sample ad copy from the book. The introduction to this section in the book reads as follows:

The advertisements in this collection are intended to serve as examples of what may conservatively be considered "profitable copy." Each advertisement is not necessarily complete as an announcement to be used continuously, but when used in a series with others printed in the collection, in line with a carefully laid out campaign, will surely bring the desired results under other equally favorable conditions.

Click on each image for a full screen display. You may have to double click for the largest image. These images are printed without permission of the publisher. The copyright has long since expired. Nevertheless, the Renaissance thanks the Page Publishing Company.

pince nez ad advertisement vintage

pince nez ad advertisement vintage

pince nez ad advertisement vintage

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Another Rectangular Pince-Nez Wearer

Yes, another enthusiast of the rectangular lens shape with pince-nez. The Renaissance recently received a photo and brief story from Mark. The following is Mark's statement.

"I am, in general, a fan of the esoteric, and of early 20th century design, and a glasses wearer since around 9. So getting set up with some nez pince was really just a matter of time. Add to that an upcoming wedding that, while not necessarily themed, had inclinations of that periods aesthetic, and I decided it was time."

The rectangular lenses can work for some people. However, the Renaissance strongly urges newcomers to pince-nez to get the classic oval lenses which are suitable for most facial types. Please see the table of contents for more information.

Thank you Mark for your story and photo.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Buffalo Bill's Pince-Nez

Mary, a contributor to the Renaissance, sent in this photo that she took at the Buffalo Bill Historical Center in Cody, Wyoming. Pictured above is a nice hoop spring pince-nez. The next step was to find a picture of Buffalo Bill wearing pince-nez. Mary did an extensive search and she couldn't find anything. Taking the initiative, she wrote to the center and asked if they have a photo of Mr. Cody wearing pince-nez. She is awaiting their response and will keep us informed.

Thank you Mary for the photo and story of historical interest.

Friday, January 14, 2011

Pince-Nez Poetry

Yes, the Renaissance received a poem submitted by an anonymous reader. Thank you.

The Handsome Young Man

A pince-nez on his nose
Won't wear it as a pose

He is surely aware
At each approving stare.

That his eyewear is best
Because it passes the test

By staying in place
And gracing the face

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Rectangular Lenses: Yes!

The Renaissance was thrilled yesterday to receive an email with photos from a reader who wears pince-nez with rectangular lenses. Ok, they are not true rectangular lenses but in the shape of a trapezoid. This is an unconventional shape for pince-nez. However, as you can clearly see, it works wonderfully for Dan. The great aspect of pince-nez is that this eyewear allows you to express yourself in so many ways while retaining a minimalist approach. This eyewear, when worn properly, enhances one's appearance.

Dan's email to the Renaissance was quite eloquent so I'll let him speak for himself in regard to his pince-nez. The following text is his email to the Renaissance [reprinted with permission]:

My name is Dan and I have probably the only pince-nez in the world that don't have round lenses. I actually have two pair, one for clear lenses, and one for sunglasses, and they are prescription.

The gold frames that are on the sunglasses I found on Etsy, and the silver frames that on the regular glasses are actually the Morpheus glasses from the movie The Matrix. Though the frames were supposed to be the other way around, with the gold on the clear lenses and the silver with the sunglasses, I actually like the gold with the dark lenses. I went with the rectangular lenses so as to avoid everyone instantly thinking I was trying to be like Morpheus from The Matrix.

It took several weeks to actually find a place that would do the drill mounted lenses due to risk of breaking the lenses; which the place that did do it, did break two lenses during the build.

They are absolutely wonderful, and everyone I talk to does a double take when they see that there are no ear pieces. They are great, except when headbanging to heavy rock music, when the fell off and I accidently stepped on them, scratching one lens and flattening the nose piece. I was at a Renaissance Faire in Fresno, CA (after hours party), and in the morning was able to find a jeweler and reshaped the nose piece, and survived the next few days with a horribly scratched lens, but was able to get it replaced.

This is my story of my pince-nez, and I love them.

Thank you Dan for the great story. Readers should consider the use of silicone nose pads for superior comfort and security with their mountings. As a final note, we suggest that first-time pince-nez wearers use the classic oval lens shape and size.

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Modern Pince-Nez Lenses: Wipe or Wash?

If you wear a pince-nez with moden prescription lenses you have discovered the many benefits of polycarb, hi-index or other plastic material. The one negative aspect is that it is quite easy to scratch them. Use care when cleaning your lenses. My colleague has related from long experience that he never wipes his pince-nez but always runs warm water on both sides of it before applying mild liquid dishwashing soap to clean the lenses. This can can be combined with Windex and a gentle rubbing followed by a thorough rinsing. Dry the lenses and mounting/frame with either a soft, clean all-cotton cloth or special lens cloth (given out by opticians with eyeglasses). Wiping your pince-nez with a tissue or paper towel when it is dry can easily scratch the lenses if there is any grit on them.

If you have to rub your eye(s), it is a good idea to remove your pince-nez first. My colleague mentioned the "mystery" of a scratched lens was uncovered when he realized a fingernail caused the damage when he rubbed his eye while wearing pince-nez.

Using care when washing your pince-nez will prolong the life of your lenses and your beautiful pince-nez will sparkle!


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