Do you get excited finding the right style of frames for your individual clients, or have you lost a wee bit of your passion for fitting eyeglasses?

Twenty-five years ago, I was bored with the repetition of fitting the same frames over and over and had decided I simply would die if I had to do it for another twenty years. Okay, maybe that is a bit exaggerated and dramatic but suffice to say I was truly bored with being an optician.

To orchestrate my exit strategy from the optical world (or so I thought), I trained to be an Image Consultant and started a small consulting business styling wardrobes of clothing to match personality. Once I had the client’s clothing style put together we realized that their eyeglasses were all wrong for their new wardrobe and their new look.

Listening to my client’s advice, I started to include Eyewear Styling as part of my Image Consulting services. Guess what? It took only six months of believing that I had made a “clean break” from the optical business before I was lured right back in, and not just a little. I made a big move and shifted my business focus from styling wardrobes to styling “wardrobes of eyewear” and created a mobile eyewear boutique.

After styling over 1,000 clients with new eyewear, I could see similarities in personality and eyewear styles. I created five “Spec Styles” to include clothing style, hairstyles, personality traits and eyewear choices. I designed a system to help me uncover their personal style, select eyewear and to communicate why this frame was the best choice.

As optical professionals, we strive to be “in the know” about the latest eyewear trends and which frames celebrities are wearing. Knowing the Spec Style personalities helps us to understand our client’s strengths and preferences, allowing us to offer multiple frames and to fit the right trend that will accessorize their many clothing styles.

There are five Spec Style personalities, and clients will be dominant in at least two — and often three — depending on the style of clothes, fabrics, profession and unique casual wardrobe. Each Spec Style prefers a different look in their eyewear. They may need a subtler, understated look for business but have a bit of a wacky creative style for the weekend.

Here are the five Spec Styles and eyewear your clients will love:

  1. Subtle Sophisticate™ – The first impression is well groomed, conservative, credible with high quality accessories. Eyewear is timeless, structured and classic designs are key for this Spec Style.
    • Daring Dramatic™ – The first impression is strong, striking, fashion-forward with a strong presence. Eyewear that is bold, oversized or in bright colours define this Spec Style.
    • The Natural™The first impression is informal, unpretentious and approachable. Eyewear that is comfortable yet edgy, textured or made of natural materials define this Spec Style.
    • Inspired Artist™ The first impression is unconventional, unique and experimental. This Spec Style reflects an artistic edge, asymmetry or a vintage vibe.
    • Elegant Charmer™The first impression is self-assured, glamorous, meticulous and formal. Eyewear that is luxurious, with intricate design details and soft shapes define this Spec Style.

      Uncovering your client’s individual style in your retail environment may be as simple as observing the garments they are wearing when they arrive at your dispensary. You can visually assess and note to yourself some details of their clothing style.

      Is the first impression:

      1. A strong look with sharp angles and colours?
      2. A neat, tailored look with matching belts and shoes?
      3. An eclectic look with a mix of new and vintage garments?
      4. A relaxed look with comfortable ankle boots?
      5. A soft look with shiny fabrics or in luxurious cashmere?

      When selecting eyewear, you can communicate and relate design details of the frames to the style of their clothing. You could also dig deeper and ask clients about the colours they love to wear in their wardrobe. Many clients will answer “black,” and laugh at themselves. We want to know the colour of their favourite dress, golf shirt, handbag or tie. It is easy to sell a black or tortoiseshell frame but introducing colour opens up the conversation to multiple purchases.

      As you style your next client:

      • Pay attention to their clothing style and make a mental note of designs and lines.
      • Check out the shapes, colours and styles of the accessories they are wearing: jewelry, handbags and shoes.
      • Ask more questions about their fashion preferences and recommend multiple frames!

      I believe that when we are excited about the fashion side of optical, we can help more people fall in love with “wardrobes of eyewear.”

      Be Spectacular & Successful in all you do!

       – Originally published in Optik Magazine

      Interested in learning more about how to incorporate Eyewear Styling into your dispensary? Check out my different training offers.