EOE is one of the most exciting, sustainable eyewear brands to come out of Sweden; born on a bright and snowy spring day in 2010, during a snowmobile ride in the small village of Ammarnäs in Swedish Lapland.
The crisp air and the scenery over the snow covered mountains gave Erik and Emilia Lindmark an idea; to create a collection of eyewear that combines the elegance and simplicity of Scandinavian design with the barren beauty of the nature in Swedish Lapland.
Heritage from the Swedish north is reflected both in the names and colours of the eyewear, not least in the details and materials brought from the wild and beautiful nature. “We were first on the market with launching a collection of sustainable eyewear without any phthalates that are normally used in the production of glasses,” says customer relationship coordinator, Josefin Gustafsson. “Today, EOE is the leading sustainable eyewear brand in Scandinavia, and all eyewear is sustainably produced and completely recyclable and biodegradable.”
“Our eyewear is designed in Swedish Lapland and then carefully handmade in the Italian Alps. The ambition is to one day be able to both design and produce every piece in the north of Sweden, where the idea of EOE once was born. Until then, the Swedish mountains are replaced with the Alps, and the work from EOE headquarters focuses primarily on making the rest of the production even greener, but for that matter, never to compromise with neither design nor quality of the eyewear.
“Since we come from Swedish Lapland and the closeness to the nature the ethos behind the brand came very natural to us. To reduce the destructive impact of the global fashion industry on the environment we try to engage in such actions as using recyclable or environmentally friendly materials in our eyewear, but also by using the right packaging and by choosing sea over air transportation for our products.
“Behind each beautiful style of eyewear is a model of eco and social responsibility that encompasses a whole range of business, ecological, and environmental practices. As pioneers of a sustainable eyewear brand, EOE believes that we can bring about the change needed, by producing stylish, green, fashion-forward eyewear while raising consumer awareness and setting an example of sustainability.
“In our eyewear we always use ‘a piece of Swedish Lapland’ in that way that the reindeer antlers and birches in our products comes from the nature in Lapland so the production is up here on that part. But we manufacture the frames in Italy, and we have visited the production to make sure it follow our guidelines, but also to get a closer relationship to understand each other and how we can develop EOE together in a sustainable way.”
With regard to sustainability as defined by reducing the human-made impact to the planet and its ecosystems, “I would say we support the waste reduction and recycling. This since we are working on a huge new project where we aim to recycle old frames, which has never been done before…
“Our inspiration is always from the North, since it’s a never ending source of inspiration. Just imagine the northern lights, snow and fresh air. So this time our collection is inspired by the small villages here in Lapland, it can be a rimless clean frame designed after a small village that is close to an icy lake.”
EOE’s latest lookbook embodies the brand’s ethos, “We tried to bind together everything that we stand for – the sustainability, different materials and Swedish Lapland through product pictures, nature pictures and editorial pictures;” while doing good has been the highlight of Gustafsson’s career. “I would say about two years ago when we started developing this new project we been working on, feels so good to make a change. All frames that people are changing into new ones, where do the plastic end up? We felt the urge to do something about it.”
Stella McCartney is a brand he admires, “She is making such changes in the fashion industry with her development on new fabrics.” While they love to collaborate with creative people that love building a ‘love brand’, “Often we work with people that have a connection to north of Sweden or a true engagement in the environment, people down to earth you might say.”
As for exciting things in the pipeline, “Our recycling project of course!” exclaims Gustafsson. “We collect eyewear from stores (people leave their old, broken frames) and turn them into a new world unique material. 100% closing the loop.”
EOE Eyewear is available in optical fashion shops around Scandinavia, online and at selected retailers in France and Italy.