Haute Couture Glasses Trend: When the Accessory Becomes Art

Glasses are  slowly but surely creeping into the sophisticated world of haute couture and embracing its futuristic, flamboyant extravagance. With their boundless style potential, glasses offer both young designers and leading fashion houses the opportunity to take haute couture down new paths and make this accessory as prestigious as it is practical.

Extravagant sunglasses with green frame decorated with white flowers and pearls, purple gradient lenses.

© Lafont

Extravagant sunglasses with green frame decorated with white flowers and pearls, purple gradient lenses.

© Lafont x Sekimoto


For Chanel’s Haute Couture show in July 2007, Karl Lagerfeld joined forces with Lesage to create glasses bedecked with sequins and camellias, and with Lemarié for a feather and organza extravaganza. As the Kaiser of fashion put it, “Everybody wears glasses. But using them as a canvas we can embellish like jewellery is something new”. Rarely seen without his signature dark sunglasses, he saw eyewear as a new way of expressing unique know-how.

The Lafont x Sekimoto frames are the ultimate example of glasses as jewellery. Beautifully handmade by Satochi Sekimota, meilleur ouvrier de France in embroidery, the Ouvrage frames are delicately embellished with beads and sequins. The epitome of Parisian haute couture, they were the perfect way for Lafont to mark its 100th anniversary.

Launched by Karl Lagerfeld, the Chanel Métiers d’Art runway shows perpetuate excellence and expertise. The most recent showcased iconic Chanel eyewear with diamanté embellishment on tweed and lace.


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Une publication partagée par Schiaparelli (@schiaparelli)

Two models wearing extravagant gold embellished sunglasses and luxurious gold clothing.

© Rahul Mishra x Lenskart

Fashion portrait of a woman wearing black oversized sunglasses with a mesh veil.

© Alain Mikli x Alexandre Vauthier


Liberated chic is exactly what you can expect from haute couture eyewear with extraordinary designs like Jean Paul Gaultier’s op art-inspired prop glasses, Beyoncé x Balmain’s Renaissance Couture jewelled collection and the surrealist gold frames spotted in the Schiaparelli show.

Glasses don’t want to be an after-thought; they are the accessory working hard to modernise and add originality to Haute Couture codes. Alexandre Vauthier and Alain Mikli’s 2018 collaboration treated us to off-the-charts glamour with its quartet of bold, vibrant frames set with Swarovski crystals.

In July 2022, Giambattista Valli gave traditional couture a little extra oomph by pairing his looks with diamanté disco glasses. His slogan? “Dress your eyes in Giambattista Valli!”

As for Indian Rahul Mishra, he teamed up with Lenskart to embroider not just garments but also eyewear with foliage, naming their collection The Tree Of Life.

By adding glasses to their collections, young couturiers are leaving behind the salon atmosphere that has long gone hand in hand with Parisian haute couture, and choosing much more modern alternatives.

Stylish fashion model in long shiny gold dress and black sunglasses, fashion show photo on black background.

© Balenciaga

Close-up of a model wearing transparent glasses with rhinestone details, matched with a glittery outfit.

© Fendi

Model walking in gray striped suit, wearing massive black sunglasses, catwalk atmosphere with audience.

© Maison Margiela Artisanal


In July 2023, Balenciaga Couture launched its first eyewear collection. Because it wouldn’t be haute couture without gold, Balenciaga decided to go big with three 18-carat solid gold styles that can be adjusted and customised in the brand’s private salons.

At Fendi’s last runway show, it was all white gold and diamonds with futuristic, organic frames designed by Kim Jones. Delfina Delettrez-Fendi, the brand’s head of jewellery, wanted the frames to be the jewellery of the future. After the show, she explained “I like the idea of a practical accessory that, to begin with, is not very “dressy”, but that we have almost used like make-up to brighten up the face. It gives quite a Blade Runner vibe”.

Under the expert eye of John Galliano, Maison Margiela Artisanal brought fashion week to a dramatic close. An integral part of the show, bug glasses created a voluntarily ambiguous attitude to the art of dressing and undressing, with see-through and trompe l’oeil effects.

Female model with an updo hairstyle, wearing black sunglasses and an innovative black dress with structured circles around the skirt.

© Clarissa Oliverio

Model with unique spiral-shaped eyeglasses, posing in skin-tight skin-colored outfit, clean studio ambiance.

© Clara Besnard / Luc Bertrand

Model with unique spiral-shaped glasses, posing in skin-tight skin-colored outfit, clean studio ambiance.

© Maria Nava / Roy Brandys Studio


Haute Couture is an exciting playground for young up-and-coming couturiers on an artistic quest. Driven by a desire for complete design freedom, they are taking Haute Couture shows out of the luxurious salons reserved for wealthy clients and often giving glasses centre stage in the process. Italian Clarissa Oliverio is one example with her experimental use of futuristic shapes and materials.

For his show, storytelling genius Maitrepierre worked with Clara Besnard, a finalist in the 39th edition of the Hyères International Festival of Fashion. The young woman made sure it wouldn’t be easy to forget her with stunning glasses representing the metamorphosis of the butterfly.

Maria Nava, another finalist in the “accessories” category, is breaking down the barriers between art and fashion. Her blend of futuristic technologies and traditional know-how creates surprising sculptural 3D masks.

Borrowing from jewellery and making strong artistic statements, Haute Couture glasses are definitely the accessory to watch in future runway shows.