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Interview With Oliver Peoples and Larry Leight

5 Things You Didn't Know About Oliver Peoples

Oliver Peoples defines understated cool. They're not flashy sunglasses, and never will be. But somehow, the line based out of LA has become super fly, for the best reasons: the shades are really well-made and always seem to hone in on just the right shape. So just who is Oliver Peoples? We spoke with founder and creative director Larry Leight to get some good dirt on this quietly awesome brand. Here are five things you didn't know:

  • Oliver Peoples was a man before a brand
    In 1986, optician Larry Leight purchased an estate collection of vintage, American-made eyewear, which included beautiful filigreed frames and clip-ons from the American machine age. With this purchase was a receipt signed by "Oliver Peoples," who was presumed to be the original owner. According to the estate seller, the man had no known living family, so Larry decided to name the store (and later the wholesale company) Oliver Peoples in his honor.

More cool facts about Oliver Peoples after the jump.

  • The first advertisement for Oliver Peoples was titled "Working Opticians."
    The ad was created in-house by Larry Leight and his brother, Dennis, and features actual Oliver Peoples' employees building an O’Malley frame.
  • Andy Warhol wore Oliver Peoples on the cover of Manner Vogue.
    It was called the Identity and was Larry Leight's first frame he ever designed. Not bad for a rookie designer.
  • The O'Malley frame, featured in American Psycho, was modeled after the eyeglasses worn by Los Angeles Dodgers' former owner Peter O'Malley.
    It remains one of the most sought-after frames in the company's history, even though a psycho wore them.
  • Oliver Peoples would love to collaborate with Johnny Depp and Kate Moss.
    These are founder Larry Leight's favorite style icons of the moment (now ask him about Gregory Peck).
  • The DaddyB is the style worn by both Jay Z and Kate Moss.
    A cool unisex shade? Reason enough for us to take a second look!
  • Oliver Peoples is obsessed with music, and produces its own compilations.
    The company produces really rad CD compilations to reflect the brand's vibe, and it's always on the hunt for new songs.
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