children with glasses

Recently, we invited our customers to participate in a survey about kids’ frames, and we were thrilled to receive almost 2,000 responses! We always like to hear your feedback, because it helps us continually improve the products we offer to better suit your needs. In honor of International Children’s Day, we’re unveiling a brand new Zenni Kids portal on June 1st with your insights in mind. We can’t wait to share it with you, but – first things first – the survey results!

Let’s Start with the Basics

“Your glasses are very stylish and affordable. Keep it that way.”

Most of our respondents were moms, although we heard back from a fair share of dads, aunts, uncles, siblings, and grandparents. When it comes to the features that matter most when buying kids’ eyewear, it’s easy to see that our customers are savvy shoppers who want quality and value. Affordability topped the list across the board, while durability pulled in the second highest votes.

Top Considerations Before Purchasing

Screen Shot 2015-06-03 at 10.28.20 AM

Materials Matter, and So Does Style

“Zenni optical is awesome. Very affordable and great selection.”

Affordability also matters when it comes to the materials you look for in our glasses. Plastic options led the pack as the preferred, inexpensive option for kids’ frames. While the overall price certainly matters, you also made it clear that style is a major factor that can’t be ignored – and we feel the same way! The vast majority of you agree that full-rim, classic frames such as below are still the go-to look that both you and your kids adore.

Many younger children love to emulate their parents. We are working on rolling out more styles that both adults and children can love!

Crunching the Numbers

“Zenni makes purchasing less stressful.”

We were curious to know how many children’s glasses our customers normally go through each year (after all, kids have a tendency of needing replacement pairs!). Most of you report purchasing two pairs of kids’ frames annually, although for many of you, that number hit the four and up mark based on a variety of different causes.

Kid’s Glasses Purchased Per Year

Screen Shot 2015-06-03 at 10.32.46 AM

Listening to Reason

“Zenni has been wonderful for ordering for my grandson as he has many prescription changes and has lost a few pairs, too.”

Broken glasses were the biggest culprit for needing extra pairs, but other factors like prescription changes, lost frames, and kids wanting to try different styles also made the list.

Top Reasons For Buying Kid’s Glasses

Screen Shot 2015-06-03 at 10.31.06 AM

Keeping Your Options Open

“You’re doing great! We use our insurance to buy one pair each every 24 months. That’s way too long for kids! So when they break them, lose them and/or need a new Rx, Zenni supplies all the rest! Thank you for helping me keep a family of 5 in fashionable and affordable glasses!”

Most of you have two or more kids whom you regularly purchase eyewear for, and that means you need lots of style and sizing options for different ages and genders. Almost half of your tots are between six and nine years old, but teens, tweens, preschoolers and even babies have their eyewear needs, too!

child with aviators

Our Promise to You

“Zenni Optical is the best!! Keep it up. :)”

You let us know what you look for in kids’ frames, and we want you to know that we are honored to receive your candid responses and incorporate them into your Zenni shopping experience. The fact that you took time out of your busy schedules to share this valuable feedback is just one more reason why we love our customers. Rest assured that we hear you loud and clear, and will use this information to continually expand and improve our kids’ prescription eyewear selection.

Don’t forget to look for the Zenni Kids portal when it makes its grand debut on June 1st!

The super talented, Seattle-based photographer, Mandee Rae, has shot everything from the local prom to the Grammys. Having recently fallen in love with her beautiful blog, we  decided to reach out and see if she could bring her amazing talents to bear on a glasses-centric photoshoot. She accepted, thankfully, and with a little help from the talented Hailee Keanna (model), Taylour Chanel (hair and makeup) and Karla Ortiz (stylist) she put together these wonderful photos and the interview below. Enjoy!

 

Zenni: What brought you to photography (and to Seattle)?

Mandee: I started photography back in middle school back when Flickr was a big deal. Flickr was such an awesome community and it constantly inspired me. I’ve lived in Seattle my entire life, and it is just growing so much. Seattle is a lot of fun, we have the city but we also have places an hour away for hikes that are just unreal.

Zenni: What person would you most like to photograph?

Mandee: Oh my, this is an insanely difficult question. There are so many beautiful people in this industry I would never be able to narrow it down. I love Cara Delevingne’s look so much – the strong eyebrows. I also just have a love for Taylor Swift and would love to do something romantic and soft with her. (Dream big right?!)

Zenni: What is your favorite style of eyewear and/or sunglasses?

Mandee: For my personal wear, I love the large thick styles. I also really love cat eye sunglasses! Those are fun and super cute to wear.

Zenni: Do you have a favorite Zenni frame?

Mandee: Yes, currently OBSESSED with the pair I just got – 286325. It is making it hard to want to wear contacts, haha. They can add so much to an outfit, I love them.

madee

Zenni: Who do you consider the best photographer of all time?

Mandee: I would never use the word “best” because there are so many different styles in photography. I think for every genre there is an incredible photographer for each. I really love so many different photographers work. Annie Leibovitz, of course. I think she inspires most photographers, she is really incredible. However – in the Instagram world, I am currently in love with Kesler Tran’s style & Tamara Lichtenstein. They are very different but both are incredible.

Zenni: What advice do you have for those who want to pursue photography?

Mandee: Just try to keep working at it. Stay inspired. Being inspired in so important. It doesn’t matter where the inspiration comes from… (walking down a city street, taking a hike, looking at magazines). Use that inspiration to go out and shoot, and just keep working at it.

glasses modeling

Zenni: You do a lot of travel photography. What’s the most incredible location you’ve shot?

Mandee: Barcelona, Spain in 2010. By far the best trip I could have ever asked for. That was over 4 years ago, and I still love the images I took there. I would love to go back and see what I could do now.

Zenni: Speaking of fashion, let’s talk about your closet! If you had to summarize your style, how would you describe it? Who are your favorite fashion designers, and what brands do you adore?

Mandee: My style is definitely casual, and easy. I have to be comfortable. If I am not comfortable, it just ruins my mood entirely. I love the clearance section at Urban Outfitters and Anthropologie. I wear boots about 98% of the time, and pair that with jeans or black leggings with some type of top. I love loose tops, and jean jackets or cardigans. I walked into Old Navy the other day and walked out with a new closet. I am really in love with what their company has been producing.

Zenni: For your Zenni shoot, you worked with model Hailee Keanna, who describes herself on her YouTube channel as both a model and a total nerd. What do you look for in a model?

Mandee: Oh my gosh, I love this question. I LOVE HER. She is an awesome human being who is hilarious, really great at making youtube videos and knows her video games. She was such a blast to work with in this photo shoot. As a photographer, you want a model you connect with and have fun with. If it feels awkward or forced it can be really difficult to get the right images. She was so easy, so fun, so quirky and crazy. I love her – I don’t know how else to say it!

Zenni: Since you’re a fellow Pinterest addict, tell us all about your boards.

Mandee: Oh man, I love Pinterest. Funny too because when Pinterest first became a thing, I tried really hard to stay off the bandwagon. I have boards for just about everything. I am constantly using Pinterest to find inspiration. I have a new board that I really love called FILM – I have been trying hard to get that built up. I love that natural, candid, emotional film look. It is incredibly popular, and I think has really inspired our generation.

Zenni: The Zenni shoot is adorable with the use of polka dots and color – it has a Kate Spade sort of feel to it! What is Karla Ortiz like as a stylist, and what was her inspiration for this shoot?

Mandee: Karla is such an awesome person. I truly believe in fate because of how her and I met. We met in the hallway of her building where I was doing a shoot. I happened to sneak behind her when she opened the front entrance door and she was being a protective tenant and asked if I lived in the building. I explained that I was renting a place for a shoot and she surprised me by saying she was a stylist. She had just gotten back from pulling clothes for an upcoming shoot. This being said, that same day she invited me to go out for a drink at a bar for her boyfriend’s birthday. (Friendliest person alert. She is from Canada – go figure.)

We got coffee a week later and discussed collaborating on the Zenni shoot together. I sent her a few ideas and she came up with the mood boards. I didn’t even see the outfits she pulled for the shoot until the day before. This shoot was so successful because of her incredible styling skills. She is so great, I could brag about her forever.

Zenni: Tell us about working with Taylour Chanel, who did the gorgeous hair and makeup for the Zenni shoot. Her portfolio has a ‘70s/bohemian/Free People style, which is so in right now.

Mandee: OMG. I love her also. She is incredible! Working with Taylour is a highlight for all my shoots. She is that person who brings the party to the party. My clients absolutely RAVE about her. I work with a lot of seniors in high school for senior portraits and she livens them up and brings them out of their shell. She just has that really awesome personality that people are attracted to. Taylour keeps up on all the makeup trends and is constantly surprising me. She is so talented it is unreal. She has a YouTube channel that really shows off her fun spunky attitude!

Birds may be chirping, and temperatures may be rising, but spring hasn’t officially sprung until floral prints make their grand appearance. A closet full of flowery sundresses is great, but the secret to looking festival-ready is all about accessorizing. Flower-trimmed headbands and sunglasses help transform even the most basic outfits into stylish fashion statements. One of the easiest (and most affordable) ways to incorporate this pretty theme into your wardrobe is via your eyewear with the addition of do-it-yourself floral embellishments.

Whether you’re a DIY all-star or a timid newbie, the process is sweet and simple – we promise! All you need is a hot glue gun or standard super glue, artificial flowers for decorating and a cute pair of Zenni frames, of course.

zenni floral items

For our frames, we chose these browline glasses in classic black and added a sunglasses tint (learn about our tinting options here!):

browline frames

Simply place a small drop of glue on the corners of the frame, and then place the flower décor on top of the glue while gently applying pressure to help the flower stick.

Ta-da! See, we told you it was easy! And seriously, how cute are these sunglasses?

This feminine feature can add texture, color and personalization to regular glasses and sunglasses alike, and it’s a fun way to tap into your creative energy.

Don’t be afraid to let your inner fashion designer emerge by experimenting with different frame shapes and trends. Styles such as white browlines, translucent pastels and colorful cat-eyes work well with a variety of floral additions.

foral glasses

What do you think of our floral creation? Care to share any artsy ideas of your own? We’d love to hear your thoughts and suggestions in our comments section! And don’t forget to check out our DIY archives for more ideas to try!

Interview with Mandee Rae

The super talented, Seattle-based photographer, Mandee Rae, has shot everything from the local prom to the Grammys. Having recently fallen in love with her beautiful blog, we  decided to reach out and see if she could bring her amazing talents to … [Read more]

DIY Floral Glasses

Birds may be chirping, and temperatures may be rising, but spring hasn’t officially sprung until floral prints make their grand appearance. A closet full of flowery sundresses is great, but the secret to looking festival-ready is all about a … [Read more]