How many pairs of spectacles and sunglasses do you own?I’ve had a lot over the years, for reading, driving, watching television and at the theatre. I have both sets of glasses, reading and distance. I am passionate about glasses. I’ve been wearing them for over 20 years so I must have had a few hundred pairs by now, as well as sunglasses.
We developed my range over seven months and when designing my own Twiggy for Aurora women’s range for Specsavers, I wanted them to include crystals and have glamour, but not to be too ‘in your face.’
Working with the Specsavers design team, I learned a lot. I emphasised that they had got to be light, if not, they can be uncomfortable and rub your nose. We are now working on the sunglasses range for spring/summer 2016.
With the launch range of six optical frames, we designed different shapes for different personalities. I like tortoiseshell but Specsavers asked me to include two metal frames, as metal styles are bestsellers. We came up with two styles, in silver and rose quartz, so there is something for everyone.
I really like the crystal at the tip of the sides and that’s become something of a signature for me. It’s been great fun designing them.
Do you have a favourite pair?
I really like the blue sapphire and black from my own range. They are fabulous.
Can you describe your first pair of spectacles?
I had perfect vision until I was 45 and then I got my first pair of reading glasses, that was 21 years ago. They were tortoiseshell, as I have always loved tortoiseshell. As many as you buy though, you lose a lot and I sit on them.
Who would you pick as your eyewear style icon and why?
Johnny Depp wears eyewear very well. Emma Bunton looks fabulous. I saw her at the Spectacle Wearer of the Year Awards in her black frame and she looked amazing.
What prompted you to go for an eye examination?
I have always been a keen reader. I love books but the print was getting blurred. It was so funny. I had lunch with a friend and she said, “you’ve got yourself some glasses.” She laughed at me and I said, “you wait, it will come to you.” Guess what, a year later she rang me to tell me she had got her first pair of glasses.
Has wearing spectacles changed your outlook on eye care?
I didn’t have to wear glasses all my life but it makes you more aware that you should look after your eyes.
We are very lucky to live in an age where they can make lenses, a century ago, people, especially the poor, couldn’t work or read when they needed glasses.
Do you wear contact lenses and why?
I tried contact lenses but I didn’t get on with them. I was told off for not wearing them for long enough but I won’t give up on my glasses. Besides, most contact lens wearers wear glasses as well. Glasses show a lot of someone’s personality. Which ones they choose are important.
How did you come to celebrate 50 years in fashion?
I started modelling very young, when I was 16. I have always loved clothes, now I design for Marks & Spencer. I have always been into what happens in fashion, how it changes, what comes in and what goes out. Fashion is always fascinating.
I’m very proud of my clothing range, that the majority can afford it. I work hard to use good fabrics. I am also glad that my glasses are affordable. That is important to me.