We’ve never worn contact lenses because we love our spectacles too much. When we started wearing them in grade school they were a hassle. In high school we hated them because they kept sliding off our oil-slick face, which was not the fault of the glasses but of our face. In college we were indifferent to them, although they provided a great excuse for not seeing the people we didn’t want to see. Then we met Nella Sarabia, and she made us love our spectacles. She got us hooked on vintage frames, and eyeglasses became not just a necessity to us, but a personal signature.
We find our eyeglass frames everywhere—the sidewalks of Seoul, the night markets of Taipei, and Brooklyn thrift shops are excellent sources, designer boutiques when they’re having big sales, and friends who spot strange eyewear on their trips get them for us. Then we take the frames to Nella’s shop at UP Diliman, where she replaces the lenses with our prescription lenses. Designs for sunglasses are usually more adventurous than regular spectacles, but some are too flimsy for our prescription lenses. Nella says to check the plastic frames for metal supports—those are more durable.
Last Saturday we brought our recent acquisitions to Nella, and by Wednesday morning they were ready to wear.
This large cat’s eye frame in tortoise shell (plastic, actually) was a present from our friend Anna.
Ten dollar round metal frames from a sidewalk vendor in Seoul, in the style of
Daria fan art
Nella Sarabia’s Optical Shop is at Unit 39 of the UP Shopping Center in Diliman, QC (near Kalayaan Dorm). Call (02)4355685 to make an appointment.