100% Optical has partnered with the world renowned Royal College of Art (RCA) to stage the all-new 100% Eyewear Design Competition. The competition was open to students from a range of courses including Fashion, Footwear & Accessories, Ceramics & Glass and Metalwork & Jewellery.

On 19th November the judging panel gathered at The Royal College of Art to select 8 Finalists across two categories: couture high-end luxury and ready to wear. From over 60 entries, 32 were selected to be presented to the judging panel. Students were also asked to present their workbooks so that the panel could review their concept and working process.

RCA judging 3 copy copy

The judging panel came from a mixed background with two fashion tutors, Flora McLean and Heather Holford; two qualified opticians, Roger Pope and Marie Wilkinson (head designer at Cutler and Gross); and two more eyewear designers, Jesse Stevens and Jason Kirk. This made for an opinionated debate, particularly for the couture category. One design, 'Bolt-on Brick sunglasses' challenged the purpose of eyewear on the catwalk while a millinery student created a 'mask' that could be seen more as an accessory than eyewear.

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‘Are they wearing this to see or be seen?’ Jesse Stevens on Bolt on Brick sunglasses

The panel decided that the 8 finalists represented a vibrant mix of innovative and commercial ideas, with all-rounded entries covering concept, experimentation and model-making. Ready to wear designs ranged from wire frames, to kit glasses and postcard specs while the couture winners included a moulded mask and embroidered eyewear. Each of the designs will be made up as prototypes and displayed in the 100% Innovation arcade at 100% Optical 2014.


Ready to wear

RCA judging anna-alexander copy

Anna Alexander, Womenswear 1

RCA judging Parsha-Gerayesh-Nejad

Parsha Gerayesh-Nejad, Design products

RCA judging Olivia-Hanson

Olivia Hanson, Womenswear 2

RCA judging Ji-Lim

Ji Lim, Menswear 2


RCA judging Melanie-Lewiston copy copy

Melanie Lewiston, Womenswear 1

RCA sofie-van-aelbroeck

Sofie van Aelbroeck, Textiles 2

RCA judging Federica-Tedeschi

Federica Tedeschi, Textiles 2

RCA judging Shivani-Chavda

Shivani Chavda, Textiles 1