Not only a masterpiece of mid-century cinema, “Fellini’s La Dolce Vita was arguably the first film which introduced the world to Italian fashion.” So says Tom Broughton, founder of London eyewear firm Cubitts, which has collaborated with The Rake to produce what Broughton calls “an outrageously limited run of just six pieces” of the sunglasses Marcello Mastroianni wore in the film. “Marcello Mastroianni’s character was revered for his style: slim single-breasted jackets, crisp white shirts, and — perhaps most notably — his sunglasses. Worn day and night, indoors and out, they are simply some of cinema’s most iconic sunglasses,” she remarks.
The particular sunglasses worn by Mastroianni in the movie were made by Persol (the brand’s name a contraction of ‘per il sole’ — ‘for the sun’ in Italian). However,Broughton explains, “The frames were inexplicably discontinued shortly after the film’s release, and have never been remade in their original form. Which is why we’ve stepped in. Dubbed the ‘Veneto’, each pair has been handmade from start to finish in our workshop by our spectacle makers, Mat and Mila, and glazed by our very own Italian, Paolo.”
Like Marcello’s impeccable wardrobe throughout the film, Broughton says, “The ‘Veneto’ isn’t over-styled. They have no external branding and focus instead on a timeless silhouette and outstanding materials. An aviator shape but with a less sporty feel means they work seamlessly with sharp tailoring. And the colour is timeless — an enduringly classic dark turtle colour, a warm Havana acetate from Mazzucchelli in northern Italy.”