Oliver Peoples was founded in 1987 with the opening of its first boutique and subsequent launch of the original collection. From the beginning, Oliver Peoples had a passion for superior product, a distinctive culture rooted in California, and an obsession with service. These core values have remained at the foundation of the brand and endure today. Through an authentic and consistent voice, Oliver Peoples has never relied on a logo but instead on fostering relationships with like-minded consumers who appreciate and respect our approach.
The first Oliver Peoples designs were inspired by an estate collection of vintage American-made eyewear purchased by the founders of the brand in the late 1980’s. The assortment included thousands of beautifully filigreed rimless and metal frames, including clip-on metal sunglasses produced by iconic American companies such as Bausch & Lomb and American Optical. All of the frames were unworn, in mint condition, and in their original packaging.
Among the collection, which also included catalogs, tooling, and lenses, was a receipt signed with the name “Oliver Peoples.” It was reasoned that he was the owner or distributor, and the first original collection was named in his honor.
This vintage aesthetic was a substantial departure from the futuristic styles and geometric shapes in bright, brazen colors dominant in the late 1980’s. In contrast, the first Oliver Peoples collections introduced sophisticated, timeless styles in an array of natural tortoise shell hues with discreet branding and subtle details. By defining a new intellectual category, the direction of eyewear changed globally. This vintage aesthetic that inspired the first collections remains at the heart of the brand.
“Our vision was to design an original and authentic collection of eyewear, utilize innovative marketing strategies, and create a unique retail experience in our own gallery.”
- Larry Leight
Oliver Peoples was born in the heart of West Hollywood, California, on iconic Sunset Boulevard. The unique culture of Los Angeles - elements of fashion, film, art, music, and the Southern California lifestyle - remains at the core of the brand’s DNA.
This lifestyle inspires what we do and continues to have a global appeal.
Each style in the Oliver Peoples collection is conceived and designed in the West Hollywood headquarters, taking inspiration from everything including films, books, travel, magazines, and archival pieces. Careful attention is paid to each aspect of the fit and balance of the frame. The optical and sunglass collections include a range of styles from timeless, intellectual pieces with bespoke detailing to progressive, trendsetting fashion designs.
Since the debut of the first collection, Oliver Peoples has maintained a passion for superior eyewear crafted of the finest materials with careful attention to detail. Each frame is inspired and created in the design studio in West Hollywood, California. Remaining true to the sophisticated, intellectual aesthetic made iconic by the brand, custom acetate in arrays of tortoise shell hues remain at the heart of the collections.
Each frame is meticulously handcrafted in a dedicated factory following a process that combines both technological advancements and the human touch. Throughout the production phases the artisans who sculpt the material into the final product reference the original design drawing ensuring its integrity. Disregarding conventional processes, each step is carried out despite the length of time required. The end result is an authentic design with bespoke, handmade details that are distinctive and unique.