The Open Practice: 1886, a Story of Craftsmanship and Britishness 

In our latest instalment of The Open Practice, our CEO Peter delves into the rich history and meticulous craftsmanship of Curry & Paxton's exclusive 1886 Collection. Born from a tradition that dates back to the company's establishment in 1886, this collection embodies the spirit of innovation that positioned London as the epicentre of ophthalmological advancements during that era.

Peter explains, "Curry & Paxton was founded at a time when London was leading the world in optical innovation. Our founders, William Curry and George Paxton, were not only business partners but pioneers who crafted some of the era’s most sophisticated technology. Their dedication to craftsmanship and quality set a standard that we are proud to uphold in today’s collections."

The production of the 1886 Collection takes place in a partner workshop located just 3.4 miles from our Shoreditch Practice, ensuring that each piece is imbued with local heritage and artisanal expertise. "Each frame undergoes 80 meticulous processes over about seven days," Peter notes, highlighting the artisanal skill involved in the creation. The frames incorporate robust five-barrel hinges and are fitted with premium Zeiss lenses, globally recognised for their quality. Additionally, each frame is distinctively marked with a unique serial number and provided with a stamped certificate of authenticity, making every piece uniquely traceable to its origins.

Drawing inspiration from the brand’s storied past, the collection prominently features the iconic Yvan frame, which became a symbol of British style thanks to Sir Michael Caine, who wore it in quintessentially British films during the 1950s and 60s. "The Yvan frame is more than just eyewear; it’s a piece of British cinematic heritage," says Peter. "It connects our contemporary offerings to a significant era of style and influence, reinforcing our commitment to not just preserve but also advance the legacy of British eyewear craftsmanship on the world stage."

Through Peter's insights, the 1886 Collection emerges not only as a tribute to the past but also as a forward-looking endeavour that blends historical authenticity with modern innovation, continuing Curry & Paxton’s long-standing tradition of excellence in eyewear.