Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Moda Optique

I've always dreaded getting new eyeglasses. I've put off shopping for frames. I'll be wearing the things on my face, of all places, so they'd better be perfect.

Apparently, what I've needed all along was Hratch, the owner, Optician and Eyewear Consultant at Moda Optique at 415 South Lake Avenue. John discovered Hratch (pronounced as written) and Moda by stopping in on a whim. For John, choosing new frames is simple: he knows what he wants, he finds it, he buys it. Not me. I try on pair after pair: the Spinster, the Desperate Hipster, the Party Animal, the Geezer. (Perhaps I place too much importance on this.)

Hratch, a certified optician, uses three different labs to make his lenses, based on each lab's technical strengths. But he cuts the lenses himself. He fits them to the frames. He makes the glasses. That explains why he's so meticulous during the fitting. This is his creation and he wants you to look good in it.

Our Eyewear Consultant has a strong fashion sense, too, which comes in handy for me because I don't. He calmed my confusion over color and style. (Should I get the Party Animal in fuchsia or would it be better in tangerine? Try the Stylish Nerd in blue, he said, and he was right.) Hratch isn't afraid to tell you if he thinks a style doesn't work for you, but he won't do that without suggesting something that will. And I bet you'll go for it.

These services aren't cheap but they're definitely a bargain. Like John says, Hratch is an artisan. In him, titanium technology meets old world craft. I like meeting people like him in my town.

My business with Hratch is finished for now. I don't think I'll be able to break my glasses and I'm sure I'll be happy with my Stylish Nerds for quite some time. I'll have to come up with other reasons to stop in and say hello. Maybe I'll break John's glasses.

19 comments:

Shell Sherree said...

Any chance you might show us your Stylish Nerds in a profile pic, Petrea? What a wonderful place. Last time I needed new lenses, I remembered the pain of choosing the previous time and chickened out altogether. I had the new lenses put into my old frames. Hopefully they would be considered Timeless Classic, not Indecisive Cheapskate.

Katie said...

Getting new glasses can be a really traumatic experience and rarely is someone like Hratch part of the mix. Sounds like you've discovered a true genius! I would love to go into Moda and see what they have. Like Shell I chickened out for years and avoided getting new frames, but I finally got new ones and am very happy. It's funny how different frames come in and out of style.

Bellis said...

I'm really glad you've found Hratch because I've been wondering where to go after wasting $300 at Pasadena's biggest optician on a pair that don't give me good vision. Looking forward to seeing the stylish pair you've chosen.

Petrea said...

I did the same thing, Shell and Katie--been wearing the same frames for years and having the new lenses put in them. But the frames became, shall we say, icky. I'm thrilled with my new ones and I love John's, too. Yes, I'll get a new photo soon.

Bellis, Hratch doesn't test your eyes, your eye Dr. does that, but he knows what to do with your prescription. Stop in and see him and see what you think.

Desiree said...

Unlike AH, I wanted links to all your examples, particularly the desperate hipster!
Chic shop!

J+P said...

Hratch rocks. I call him the Vision Whisperer ... but not while I'm in his shop.

Petrea said...

Desiree, the one I think of as the Desperate Hipster was this little red number with wild curlicues and lines--a cousin to a Mardi Gras mask. Obviously it sells or it wouldn't be there.

"Vision Whisperer" would be about right, J.

Ms M said...

Argghh! Getting new glasses! I tried "bargain" frames a few months ago and it's not the way to go. (Fortunately I wear contacts for the most part). Glad you found a great place! I'd like to see your stylish nerds, too :)

Ms M said...

Oh, great photo, too! Love the POV....

Lori Lynn said...

I recently found my own high-end optical shop over here. I couldn't be happier. You're right, they're not cheap, but I think definitely worth it. Let's see a pic of you in your new glasses!
LL

-K- said...

I'm kind of embarassed to be caught wearing Sav-On $20 glasses while reading this.

Petrea said...

We'll set up the camera on a tripod and show you our new specs. I have something else planned for tomorrow, but we'll do it. Thanks for being interested.

K, don't tell anyone! They won't know, at least not for a while. John's previous, cheapie frames were fine when he bought them--a lovely, smoky gray. They turned purple as soon as he spent time in the sun.

J+P said...

So did the rest of me.

J+P said...

Oopsie.

TheChieftess said...

My last eye check up netted me reading glasses, progressive lenses (they don't work reading for long term, but are perfect for cooking, shopping, anything where I have to look up and back down to read something, and even better for driving at night which requires that mid range which I don't get if I wear my half reading glasses), computer glasses, (because none of the others worked for long time detailed computer work on my photos), and of course, my sunglasses....(which I always wear during the day, outside, especially driving, because they're progressive)...

Thank God for vision insurance!!!

ps...I usually don't replace them all the same year, but this year, too big a change, and the first time I ever needed computer glasses!!!)

Susan Campisi said...

What a find! Thank you for sharing... I have the same anxiety around choosing glasses. My friend who's helped in the past has moved away, so I'm on my own. But now I can go to Hratch. I like saying his name, too.

Nathalie said...

Your glasses names are hilarious !
Glad you found someone who's good at this immensely important job!

J+P said...

Hratch
Hratch
Hratch …
tum-te-tum …

Petrea said...

Wow, Chieftess, you've got a complicated set of peepers. I need two pairs of glasses and I think that's plenty.

Susan, you see J. likes saying his name, too...

Hi Nathalie, I wonder what the real names are. Probably just as silly.