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Matsuda: Time-Honored Craftsmanship for Today’s Trends

Timeless techniques, impeccable craftsmanship, quality materials and up-to-the minute trends: They all come together in Matsuda eyewear. Not to mention a high-fashion pedigree and a touch of Hollywood.

Matsuda is named for Mitsuhiro Matsuda, a trail-blazing Japanese fashion designer who helped launch Tokyo Fashion Week in 1974 and was an international fashion figure in the 1970s, ’80s and ’90s.

Based in Tokyo, Matsuda launched his first line of eyewear in 1989 Inspired by Gothic architecture, Victorian art and American jazz. Two years later Linda Hamilton wore Matsuda sunglasses when she portrayed tough-as-nails Sara Connor in “Terminator 2: Judgment Day,” a look that would become synonymous with action-hero chic.

Not long afterward, Tim Moss began selling Matsuda eyewear in a store at the original Bayshore Mall in Glendale. What was a hot brand back then remains one of his favorites today at Bronze Optical Gallery. “They're really known for beautiful details,” said Tim.

It starts with the materials: titanium, stainless steel, sterling silver and 18k solid gold as well as acetate derived from cotton and cured for over three months. Titanium is light yet imparts exceptional strength and durability, which is also true for the acetate.

Matsuda eyewear is handmade in Sabae, Japan, a center of eyewear manufacturing where the craft has been honed for generations. “The Japanese titanium craftsmen are the best in the world,” Tim said. “The most intricately detailed titanium work comes out of factories in Japan, so you see with Matsuda a lot of engraving and cutouts.”

The company prides itself in combining time-honored craftsmanship with innovative techniques to create pieces of art that can be worn. Each requires 71 hours, 13 craftsmen and up to 250 steps from concept to construction.

“I still see people with Matsuda frames they bought in the ’90s and they still are in great condition,” Tim said. “They are strong enough to handle multiple lens replacements, not to mention everyday wear and tear.”

To see Matsuda craftmanship up close, call (414) 221−7055 to make an appointment with Tim at Bronze Optical.