Paulino Spectacles is a Portuguese brand that was born out of the desire to continue the heritage and craft that I learnt from my family, one that has led me to develop a line of quality eyewear, produced by artisans, with refinement and singular raw materials.
In the late 1930s, my grandfather opened his first optical store in the city of Santarém and, since then, three generations of the Paulino family have followed in his footsteps: Paulino Bernardo Pereira was a charismatic man, a respected local personality, twice serving office as Mayor of Santarém, evidence of a deep dedication for the city he loved. According to the mores of the time, creating a personalized frame took into account, above all, the perfection of the mold created by craftsmen. It was interesting to note that the fundamental point was that the frame was adapted to the lens (and not the other way round as is the case nowadays).
In the 1930s, eye wear was essentially a tool for correcting vision: strength, resistance, quality of product and permanent comfort were prized. Operating in an essentially agricultural environment, my grandfather specialized in creating eye wear that was individual and robust as well as valuing strength, product quality and ongoing comfort. In a primarily agricultural environment, my grandfather specialized in creating glasses that were individual as well as in repairing and restoring frames, something that demanded great precision.
His relentless pursuit of perfection turned him into a tireless worker. He loved what he did and every day would insist on having lunch with the whole family. His greatest wish was to ensure that one of his sons would carry on the business with the same passion and determination that helped build it.
It was my father, Ramiro Pereira Paulino, who took up the baton, succeeding my grandfather in the late 1950's and expanding the business westwards to the town of Caldas da Rainha. Although some businesses existed there, the reality of the time meant that skill and experience were a required commodity - and Ramiro Pereira Paulino came prepared.
Throughout many years of dedication to the field of optics, he created perfect made to measure frames by hand, particularly in cases where the characteristics or shape of the face shape required customization to create a perfect fit. The "Ramiro Optica" was - and still is - a reference for quality precision optics in Portugal.
An optical shop in the 1970's was an enormous thing with dozens of little drawers full of screws and pieces of all sizes and widths, with pliers, rasps, files, and generally a large workbench for which to work. I inherited my father's name and, early on, got used to this environment: it was under my father's very workbench that I spent my early years, creating my toys from the abundant waste pieces to be found in the workshop. From an early age, therefore. I learned the trade and worked in partnership with my father for years. I kept the secrets, techniques, rigor, commitment and passion.
My passion in giving life to new frames is part of this legacy and clearly connected to my early involvement in this craft. The inspiration in creating these unique pieces comes from this creative heritage, but also in never ending quest to create pieces that arouse intense and enduring emotions from those that wear them.
Paulino Spectacles was born, therefore, from a great memory that remains alive and must be given continuation.
We want to continue the name because tradition is a transfer of knowledge from generation to generation, a legacy: the legacy in this case is called Paulino Spectacles.
Ramiro Pereira Paulino
Paulino Spectacles was born out of a historic family reference, one inspired by iconic models that marked an age but still retain the capacity to reinvent themselves, for in today’s world eyewear is no longer simply a sign of stature and erudition – it is also a statement of self.
Paulino Spectacles is inspired by the icons of the past but builds on them to suit the features of today's individual face; it harks back to the sensual and elegant golden years of American cinema, to the style of the divas and heartthrobs of yesteryear.
It is a clear reference to the glamour of those very actors and actresses and updates this style for the sophisticated user of today, each piece chosen to accentuate personality – by reinterpreting models that by their very singularity add a unique personality to each face.
Each model is chosen as a way to stress personality, reinterpreting pieces that by their very singularity personalize a look and visual identity.
Paulino Spectacles undergoes a detailed manufacturing process with recourse to specific parameters so as to optimize the physiognomy of each individual. The collection also pays particular attention to the changing tones and luminosities of the acetates.
An increasing number of people, by way of professional development and leisure, have adopted the new communication technologies, namely computers, and have become a target for using eyewear.
This group of people is more aware than ever of the importance and need to combine a visual acuity and visual protection with the concept of personal image.
The Paulino Spectacles brand is marked by a simple style of solid and refined lines, each piece crafted to a specification and design that balances perfectly on the face and highlight the unique features of each user.
Take inspiration from the past, and make it new again...
Craftsmanship is part of humanity and it entails a long chain of action, one that takes in dedication and commitment to detail to achieve the desired goal. And when it comes to craftmanship the human hand remains the primary tool.
At Paulino Spectacles, after an idea is born the first task is to draft it onto paper. There, it is perfected and tweaked, so as to get it ready for the molding process. At this stage, the size of the frames, eyes, and how everything fits on the face are all carefully considered - not just for aesthetic reasons, but above anything, to ensure that the final piece will fit in utmost comfort.
During this creative process, we always take into account that every model has to be adapted and tailored to the characteristics of each face and in the way the two combine. We also carefully consider the differences of shapes of male and female faces - each model being analalysed so that every element compliments each other.
Paulino Spectacles uses only the highest quality Mazzucchelli acetate as raw material, one that is very strong and recyclable.
The molding process is manually undertaken using rasps, saws and files, until the final mold achieves its optimum shape. With the mold completed, and using a pantograph (a manually operated machine that simultaneously “reads” the mold and cuts the piece), we start cutting the front part of the frame. This stage, though still incomplete, already allows one to anticipate the final product.
Cutting the “stems” initially follows the same process, but in this case it is also necessary, to insert a still “red hot” iron into the rod itself.
To perfect the piece, another pantograph is used to provide the frame with its final form.
The concept of embedded hinge - a reference of Paulino Spectacles - adds strength to the piece and ensures greater support between the stem and the front. This step is completed by creating a slot in the frame front, to allow the fitting of the lenses. Then there follows the polishing stage.
For the next 48 hours each piece is placed in constantly moving, rotating cylinders which contain highly porous volcanic stones that will iron out all the edges and any imperfections found in the acetate: this is the stage of heavy polishing.
The process is then repeated for the next stage in different rotary cylinders. There, the volcanic stones are much less porous than previously, which adds a new brightness to the acetate itself.
The last stage of the polishing process is undertaken manually using silk fabrics. Each piece is subject to the strictest of quality control, and further observed through magnifying glasses before being given the all clear. The aim of Spectacles Paulino is perfection.
No great effort it's needed to understand how each object becomes unique in its own right.
Paulino Spectacles creates pieces with which we want to live!