Vintage round glasses are making a comeback in Japan after the eyepieces were seen on the protagonist in famed director Hayao Miyazaki’s latest and final movie, The Wind Rises.
Studio Ghibli Inc asked Nova Optics Inc to produce the spectacles, which dates back to the early years of the Showa Era (1926-1989).
Yasuhiro Kobayashi, a designer for Nova, said he based the specifications of the replica on the actual Showa Era glasses, including the size of lenses and the thickness of frames.
Kobayashi was not allowed to borrow or reproduce the movie’s storyboards depicting the glasses, so he memorized them instead.
A French sentence, “Le vent se leve, il faut tenter de vivre”, which means “The wind is rising, we must endeavor to live” is written on the arms of the glasses.
A glasses craftsman in Fukui, who is skilled at glossing frames made of celluloid, completed the eyewear by hand.
“The glasses are exactly what we are hoping for. We could feel the accurate skills of the craftsman,” said an official of the Ghibli Museum in Mitaka, Tokyo, where the spectacles are being sold for 15,750 yen (about $162).
The round spectacles were worn by Japanese fighter plane designer Jiro Horikoshi in the animated movie set during the World War II.
The reproduced glasses were supplied to Ghibli only a week before the July 20 release of the movie and were sold out by early September.
By: Maesie Bertumen
Image: Wei-Hang Chua/Flickr