“I’ll show you a picture of my first pair of sunglasses.” Jeremy Hackett pulls out his iPhone. “I’ve always liked glasses.” The image he presents depicts his young self on holiday: a very steely-looking child who clearly means business, with hands clasped tightly behind back, dressed in nothing but underpants, white sandals, a man’s necktie, flat cap and - most notably - an oversized pair of dark sunglasses that conceal half his tiny face. Although his personal style has evidently evolved since those early days, his penchant for eyewear has remained constant. As such, it was only natural for the menswear designer and esteemed Savile Row tailoring luminary to extend his expertise to the area. His latest project is the Signature Collection, conceived in collaboration with world-renowned eyewear label Mondottica, which the Hackett label began a partnership with way back in 2003.
Its launch coincides with the opening of Hackett’s brand new flagship store, J.P. Hackett, at 14 Savile Row. “When we opened Savile Row a few months ago, we felt there was a need to do something that was really top of the range,” says Jeremy. “So we've used Japanese acetate, they have Zeiss lenses, and then we have the lighter ones which are made with titanium. All the components are top of the range, which reflects having a bespoke business in Savile Row.”
As is the case with everything Hackett produces, not a single detail has been overlooked. With high quality materials sourced from Japan and a fastidious approach to manufacturing processes, each pair of sunglasses is built to last. “The Japanese are quality-mad. Everything has to be perfect,” says Jeremy. “We have business in Japan, and when things go through quality control, there's nothing like it. In England people go, ‘Yeah, it's fine’, while in Japan, they look at everything. When you're working with glasses it is all about the small details. And the finish, that's something the Japanese are particularly good at.”