9 Nov
Frames made of water buffalo horns...really...


Designed by Zurich-based aekae studios and manufactured by Swisshorn Eyewear AG, these SIRE glasses strive for a future-forward design. But although their Swiss style may hail from future lands, their material could not be any more primitive — they’re built from water buffalo horns.

“Each SIRE natural horn spectacle consists of up to seven thin layers of horn. The core plates of horn fibers run in opposite directions known as the ”Triplex Safety System”, which is considered to offer the highest standards in quality, stability and resistance to deformation. The only waste in the production are horn splinters, which serve as natural plant nutrition. At the end of the manufacturing process every frame is polished carefully by hand, to make the natural horn structure visible.”

Although it’s an animal product, in cases like this where they’re using a piece of the animal that would otherwise go unused is strictly efficient. Of course, the really cool thing about using raw horn is that each pair of glasses will always be a unique, singular piece unlike any other.

UPDATE: Because we thought these glasses were so rad, we decided to hit up aekae studio designers Fabrice Aeberhard & Christian Paul Kaegi and get the lowdown on the inspiration for their unique eyewear. Also, some people were concerned about the usage of water buffalo horns so we figured we’d hear what they had to say about it…

What was the impetus/inspiration behind using water buffalo horns as a material?
Natural horn is a material that is light, strong and antiallergic, which makes it very suitable to be used for eyewear. It is beautifully structured and exclusive, as it only can be processed by hand and therefore not in large quantities.

The water buffalo is a domestic animal throughout asia, and has a lot bigger horns than the cows in Switzerland, for an example. The quality and density of the horn of one water buffalo allows a lot more material to be used, and the horn can be used after the natural death of the animal.

How exactly do you go about getting water buffalo horn — are there brokers? International markets?
The market for this material of course is small, but it can be bought from many traders in asia.

Have you received any backlash from animal rights groups/PETA about using animal parts?
As the animals are not killed for the horn, there are no reasons to be worried. we actually process a material that would remain unused normally.

Can you tell me about the actual design of the glasses — was there a vintage brand you looked at for inspiration?
The material itself has been used to make spectacles for centuries, and it definitely has a retro feel to it. We didn’t explicitly look at vintage brands for inspiration.

What’s next for the line — do you have a new series coming out for Christmas/2010?
We will continue to develop new models in 2010. for now we are looking for retailers around the world.




2 Responses to “Sire Glasses: Q&A with designer Christian Paul Kaegi”

  1. Pedro says:

    Where can I buy this :
    Designed by Zurich-based aekae studios and manufactured by Swisshorn Eyewear AG, these SIRE glasses

  2. angelia says:

    Dear sir/madam,

    We are glad to know your name and e-mail address from a friends, now, we avail ourselves of this opportunity to approach you for the establishment of trade relations with you.
    Our factory Dongguan Lianxin Optical (China)Co.Ltd.which found in 1999 and mainly produce Titanium and Stainless glasses,also Sunglasses that sell into South America,Western Europe,Eastern Europe and Southeast Asia etc.,there are 130~150 workers.
    Especially,we have professional technology team and enjoy a good reputation both at home and abroad in this field.
    If you are interested in our products,please do not hesitate to contact us at your convenient time.

    Best regards,


    Dongguan Lianxin Optical (China)Co.Ltd.
    Add:Yantian Changbiao Village,Fenggang Town,Dongguan city,China.
    Tel: 0769-87552638
    Fax: 0769-87552238
    Yahoo:lianxin [dot] manufacturer [at] yahoo [dot] com [dot] cn

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