‘Zoom’ calls for a fresh look – A guest blog by Nyree HughesWith so many of us now working from home, swapping the office for virtual meetings delivered from the dining table. While we may all secretly be wearing yoga pants and slippers, (not just me, right?) From the desk up, we still need to look the part, and with that in mind, we should also be taking care of our peepers, especially with all this extra screen time. So, post lockdown no 1. I visited Sheryl and her team, I had shamefully not had my eyes tested in three years, and while I didn’t care to admit it, my eyesight had deteriorated, and my frames needed an upgrade too. Despite the fear of going anywhere in case coronavirus was lurking and ready to pounce, I braved it and was put at ease by the measures put in place at Allegro Optical. All the staff are wearing PPE and surgical scrubs, which they boil wash every evening. The entire team wear masks, visors, gloves and aprons, while the optometrists “Gown Up” to perform the actual eye test. The Ozone generators are very discreet, but it is very comforting to hear them switching on and off, cleaning and sanitising the air at regular intervals. The team has implemented additional safety and cleaning measures. Every touchpoint is sanitised, including frames after every customer. Staff note this down in a cleaning log as they go along. There is also a strict social distancing procedure in place, along with protective screens and segregated areas marked with tape.
My eye testAll the eye test appointments are now a little longer to allow for thorough cleaning of consulting rooms after each visit. But the other difference I noticed was the 3D OCT machine which helps Amy and her fellow optometrists to view the health of my eyes in greater detail. The device allows her to see what’s going on beneath the surface of my retina, which she can’t with a photo or her scope. Amy explained this view in easy to understand terms; basically, the retina is a bit like a sandwich, with lots of layers. With traditional retinal photography Amy can see the top of the “sandwich”, “the bread”, but the 3D image produced from an OCT scan slices the “sandwich” in half and turns it on its side so she can see all the layers inside. Using this machine, Amy and her colleagues can then map out and measure the thickness of each of my retinas layers to get an even more precise idea of my eye health. 3D OCT scans can help to detect sight-threatening eye conditions earlier. Glaucoma can be detected up to four years earlier. Thankfully I have a very healthy retinal, and all the layers are perfect.
Finding my perfect lookAfter my eye test, I got on with the inspiring task of choosing a frame, and it was a difficult job because there was so much choice! What I love about Sheryl is not only her enthusiasm but her knack to seek out the right frame for my face shape and my complexion too. She’s also very good at nudging me just a little out of my comfort zone, to take the plunge and go for something a little bit special! Before choosing any frames, Sheryl measured me in great detail, my head width, bridge and nose splay! I didn’t even know that was a thing? She then analysed my skin tones, colours and face shape and then we were off, and the fun began. We looked at what my “colours” were, apparently my colour palette is a combination of clear and deep. This means I can wear light and dark colours together or even two dark shades. Sheryl said dark colours work well for me, especially if they have a sheen. I’d never thought about any of this when choosing glasses in the past. It was fabulous to be able to sit in a relaxed atmosphere and have frames brought to me, which were perfect for my colouring, face shape and personality. It was like a real pamper session.
Making a virtual statementI’m a fan of statement eyewear. I wouldn’t describe myself as being at Pru Leith levels just yet, but something a little different from the norm is right up my street. Thanks to Sheryl and her team at Allegro Optical I’ve found my new favourite frames in Caron Eyewear. They scream style and elegance and make a statement without being ‘in your face.’ Caron Eyewear’s debut collection strikes a balance between femininity and strength. Not only are the frames comfortable to wear, but they are also chic, timeless, with a clear emphasis on detail. And they fit perfectly. I’m now a very proud wearer of Caron’s Look Fabulous in black and gold. These frames bring the cat-eye style bang up to date in a dreamy combination of acetate and metal. I have had so many compliments about my glasses since I collected them and I am enjoying wearing them. They fit like a glove and allow me to express the real me with confidence and a smile.
Allegro Optical take a seasonal look at eyewear trendsIt only feels like yesterday that we were enjoying the long sunny days, waiting for the end of lockdown. Now here we are once again at the beginning of yet another lockdown, this time a slightly more dismal one. Despite the doom and gloom, just landed in-store are some gorgeous new collections that have got the team all excited. If you’re ready to experiment with ‘one of a kind, check me out, I’m working from home and look amazing’ frames, the latest styles from La Matta, Coco Sung, CCS and Okki Factory are nothing short of fresh, experimental, statement and timeless classics.
New frames, just for youIf you’re someone who loves to make a statement with your frames or the kind of person who goes minimal, then now is the right time to choose fashionable frames to complement your personality. Or if you love a retro look but want to stay contemporary and fresh, then you definitely need to have a look at some of these fabulous new designs. Remember to keep in mind your face shape, your skin tone, your personality and lifestyle when choosing your frames, but if in doubt, we’re here to guide you through. Here are some of our favourite frames and trends that are going to look great now and over the next year
La MattaIf you’re looking for bold frames with intriguing hues which ooze personality, look no further than La Matta. Featuring animal prints and colours inspired by the wild, these frames explode with detail and original decorative elements. The upswept front and magnificent colours are made for those looking for something unique and special.
Coco SongCoco Song frames are the ultimate fusion of East and West. Inspired by nature, they are not just accessories but feature elegant jewels to wear according to your mood. At the heart of this brand are the deep colours of French silks, perfectly in line with current eyewear trends. Dried flower and semi-precious stones that make each frame an individual masterpiece. Each frame is carefully made by hand, taking a minimum of six months to perfect. We have many different styles in stock, from subtle metal rims with glorious arms, to the subtle silk inlays.
CCSCCS, is the fresh new take from the now-famous Coco Song eyewear. CSS frames have the same individuality of Coco Song as they highlight the natural elements such as silks, dried flowers and feathers; all laminated into transparent acetates of pearly colours. We hope you’ll love these as much as we do!
Okki FactoryIf bright colourful acetate frames are your bag, look no further than Okki Factory. These bold frames are just a little bit different from the norm; from a bold white cat-eye style to pearly green, we also have a fabulous range with exquisite fabric inserts in a range of colours again spot on considering current eyewear trends.
We care about your eyecare and your eyewearWe know that almost everyone wants to look their best and that first impressions count. That’s why when you visit Allegro Optical Opticians you can not only be sure that you will receive first-class eye care. If you would like to try our unique range of eyewear call, Greenfield, on 01457 353100 or Meltham on 01484 907090
Xanthe’s back with a bangI’m back baby! Gosh who’d have thought I wouldn’t be writing a blog for 7 months!!! I’ll be honest it feels bloomin’ brilliant to be a lexical goddess again. What a year 2020 has turned out to be, but don’t worry we aren’t going to be discussing that huge elephant in every room. I think we already have enough articles to read dealing with that little beggar! No, today we’re going to be talking about a totally avoidable disaster and that is firework safety.
It’s that time of yearOf course, it’s autumn time again, (my favourite time of year!). With it comes bonfire night and all things colourfully explosive. I would like to point out before we jump in, that I don’t actually like fireworks or the booming noise they make, or the effect of said bangs have on our family dog, Dan-Dan. But for the purpose of this blog let’s say I love all things loud.
Story time! …No blog of mine would be complete without a storytime. This is more a story within a story. So when I think of bonfire night, I have two very distinct memories. One really lovely one and the other is pretty horrible. The first memory is being sat on a bed at about the age of 7, looking out a window with my Brothers, Sister and Mum while my Dad let fireworks off at the end of our long narrow garden and being totally mesmerised! Then once the fireworks were over my parents bundled us up in thick Michelin man coats, wellies, wrapped in scarves and donned with mittens and took us outside and gave us sparklers! Now as an adult I see all the ways my parents were being very firework and sparkler safety conscious, starting with my Dad positioning himself a good distance away from our house and keeping us safely tucked up inside with my Mum and ending with my Mum situating herself near a bucket full of water while we played with our sparklers.
Safety firstNow I shan’t lie, I did think it was little overkill and as the years went by we had a few more bonfire nights much the same and my parents continued to always put our safety first, and fun second, (appreciate it guys) and always drilling into us that fireworks were dangerous and not to be played with. Now skip to me being a brooding teenager thinking I knew best (I swear my teenager behaviour will come back to bite me in the butt when I have kids) and I went to a bonfire night display in a park with some friends and it was great fun and we were enjoying ourselves immensely. But of course, you get idiots at these things and some absolute numpty decided it would be hilarious to bring his own fireworks and set them off near crowds and the end result was some poor girl had one blow up near her and I promise you I will never EVER forget the agonising noises that girl made. Obviously, we and everyone around us rushed to help, but by then the damage was done.
Sad reflectionDays later I remember seeing an article of the incident in the local paper and because of how the firework exploded, the girl sadly lost her sight in one eye and had a burst eardrum and so not only did these absolute idiots partially blind her they also took her hearing too! I thank my parents to this day that they were so safety conscious and drilled into us that fireworks aren’t toys.
Now hear thisSo my message with this blog is… PLEASE don’t be that idiot who thinks having a laugh and messing with fireworks is fun because believe me it’s not and someone WILL get hurt. Also, please don’t forget our wildlife. Chilly, frosty mornings and dark evenings herald the arrival of hibernation season for hedgehogs. Piles of dry leaves and unlit bonfires make the ideal spot for sleepy hogs seeking a home for the winter months. “Hedgehog numbers are declining rapidly across the UK, so it’s never been more important to protect the wonderful wildlife on our doorsteps,” said Tarnya Knight from the Born Free Foundation. “Hedgehogs can die or suffer terrible injuries through contact with bonfires, so we’re asking people to be especially vigilant for the next few weeks and take care when building them.” The British Hedgehog Preservation Society (BHPS) are calling on people to build bonfires on the day they are to be lit to save hedgehogs and other wildlife from appalling suffering.
Play safeI’ve mentioned a few tips below that can keep yourself and others safe:
- Always check your bonfire for wildlife
- Only ever light the bonfire from one side
- Keep a bucket of water nearby if you are setting off fireworks in your garden
- Keep pets indoors
- Follow the instructions on each firework
- Light them at arm’s length using a taper
- Stand well back
- Never go back to a lit firework
- Never throw fireworks
- Alcohol and fireworks do not mix and may lead to injury
- Buy fireworks from a reputable retailer
- Always supervise children around fireworks
- Light sparklers one at a time and wear gloves
- Never give sparklers to a child under the age of 5
- Prepare for the party in advance, and in daylight. On the night you will need:
- a torch
- a bucket of water
- eye protection
- a bucket of soft earth to put fireworks in
- suitable supports and launchers if you’re setting off Catherine wheels or rockets
- Leave the lighting of fireworks to responsible adults only