Sunglasses, we all wear them, and as clinicians, we all recommend our patients wear them. However, how many of us have designed our own frame line?
Abraham Hanono, O.D., shares with us not only why he created his own line of sunglasses, but exactly how he went about it. A must read for any aspiring optometric entrepreneurs out there!
What is LAVI Optic?
My legal name is Abraham; however, everyone including my parents call me Avi. My wife’s name is Lauren. LAVI is our “celebrity” couple name, for lack of a better term! We also use LAVI as an acronym for our company slogan; Live Adventurously, Visually Illuminated.
What was the inspiration behind LAVI Optic?
A few months after graduation, I realized that I knew absolutely everything about the eye and fitting and dispensing glasses to a patient. However, being in a private practice with our own lab in house, much of what we do includes selling glasses out of our optical. I quickly realized that I knew nothing about manufacturing, designing, or fashion trends of glasses. I began researching the design process and discussing it with my wife. At some point in one of our conversations she said, “I bet we could start our own frame line.”
And that is how LAVI Optic was born.
How do you go about starting your own sunglasses line? What exactly is involved? How do you get patents? How do you get a manufacturer, supplier, distributor, etc.?
Like with anything else, you start with an idea and inspiration. Getting a manufacturer is by far the hardest part. Business hours in China and Italy take place during sleeping hours in San Diego (haha)! You have to find someone you trust and someone who makes a quality product. With running a private practice, I couldn’t afford to take time to travel overseas and visit the factories. We had very little to go on, and therefore had to order prototypes from different factories and and see what quality we felt most comfortable with. This consisted of many late night chats with overseas factories.
My wife is the creative engine behind the whole brand. She developed the line and made it into the fashion statement it is today. If I was the only one involved, you would have high quality lenses with pretty boring frames!
As for patents, you can’t really get a patent on sunglasses. You aren’t inventing a new product. LAVI Optic and the logo are protected by trademark however.
What makes LAVI Optic unique? How are the sunglasses different?
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