Glasses. Specs. Sunnies. Call them what you will: glasses are the essential human accessory which help us to – quite literally – see clearly. They help us to focus on what matters, whether it’s the work at hand, the art before us, the squalling child in our arms or the bright produce ready for your favorite meal.
So comes Che Eyewear’s new 20/20 blog – a series of beautiful editorial-style reflections on what matters most to the individuals who are our focus. They’re our customers; a merry, motley crew of artists, corporates, healers, designers, sportspeople, doctors and musicians. Over the coming moths, 20/20 will present you with Che Eyewear customers – casting a spotlight and allowing us to focus on what matters to them. It’s our investigation and contribution – a reflection of the community which support us.
In our first instalment, we feature Rose Crulli – the heart and soul of Che Eyewear.
Rose, what do you do, and how did you end up doing it?
R: The how isn’t nearly as exciting as I’d like! My husband and his business partner decided to come up with a new venture. I was at home with the children, and my husband decided that I was getting quite boring. Being boring was a reflection of being bored, I think! So he came home and said ‘I think I bought you a job today.’ That job was the beginning of Che Eyewear – and I absolutely love it! As with all fashion accessories, glasses are a reflection of personality and style – and glasses always have a place in your wardrobe.
When you were small, what did you think you would do?
R: I actually always wanted to be a journalist. But then I fell in love very young, and it all took over. I got married and dropped out of university to get some money together to buy our first home. I actually ended up in finance. I started working for the State Bank – I was in lending. I quite enjoyed that too. I climbed the ranks a little. I didn’t go back to work until after we’d had our children – and I’ve been running Che for eight years now.
Do you remember your first pair of glasses?
R: I was eight years old. I think they were fine-rimmed gold pair of glasses. Nothing too interesting. As a child and teenager, I didn’t want to be noticed as a person who wears glasses because it wasn’t cool. And through my teenage years, I used to go out blind because I didn’t want to wear glasses at all. Contact lenses back then were also very uncomfortable – and really, not even available for my prescription – or they were very hard. My friends were like ‘don’t let Rose cross the road by herself – just in case!’ *laughs* Then I realised that glasses were really me – and not to bother wearing something that doesn’t suit. I made a decision to only wear glasses that made me feel good, that made me feel like myself.
Do you remember the first pair of glasses that made you feel really good – like you’d come into yourself?
R: *Thinks* I will have to say that for many years I didn’t even choose my own glasses – because my husband chose my glasses (he also works in optometry). When he saw something he thought might suit me, he would make up my prescription. It was really when I started doing the buying at Che that I really began to style myself. It was when we were going from fine-rimmed rectangular glasses to the beginning of seeing those thicker acetate frames and bolder glasses come through as a trend. There was a pair in here when we first started – it was a pair of Sass and Bide glasses . I loved them, they were really round and thick acetate. I thought ‘I just love these! I’m going to wear them!’ I went to a barbecue that weekend when I first got them, feeling a million dollars. It was at my cousin’s place – and my cousins never spare my feelings. I walked in and my cousin said ‘Who have we got here? Nana Mouskouri?” I said to him ‘You just don’t understand fashion!’ *Laughs* It took three years for people to say that they loved this more dramatic style of glasses. Maybe I’m fashion forward?!
The glasses you are being photographed in – why did you choose them, and do they remind you of anything?
R: They remind me of my late teenage years – I had a tortoiseshell pair with a little gold and this lovely round shape. I guess as we get older, we want to go back to the things of our youth!
What are two films or books which have influenced or touched you during your life?
R: Gosh. I love thrillers. I don’t read that often, but my favorites are John Grisham, and Stephen King. I also love thrillers in cinema – The Godfather would have to be my favorite. I like all of the trilogy for different reasons. There are aspects of all three I love, but the third is my favorite. I think it’s when I really came to understand the trilogy, it brought the whole thing together.
What do you love most about Fitzroy?
R: Its diversity! The people here are so interesting. The customers that come in here – there’s an element of themselves they want to see in their glasses, and I love that. Most of the people who come in here have a creative background. The shop reflects our customers, with stories everywhere. The gloves on Zia Assunta’s dresser display are actually from my wedding! Everything has a story at Che.