Business

Manufacturing

Focus on the Future— Paris

Preface

Making tortoiseshell glasses by hand is a rare and exacting skill. One of the last practitioners, Maison Bonnet, is making sure the art survives, thanks to its keen young apprentice.

apprenticeship, craft, skill, tortoiseshell glasses

In the dimly lit basement atelier of bespoke eyewear firm Maison Bonnet, Franck Bonnet deftly bends a tortoiseshell spectacle frame into shape over an open flame. His apprentice Arnaud Falce eagerly watches the procedure. This is just one of more than 36 steps involved in crafting a pair of handmade Maison Bonnet glasses. Each pair requires up to six hours of manual labour for acetate, eight hours for horn and up to 30 hours for tortoiseshell. The company’s haute lunetterie approach has found fans in clients including Le Corbusier, Yves Saint…

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