Categories
About Allegro Music

Now Yanna can see the music

A talented pianist’s search for help to see the music

In this blog, we look at how a talented and inspiring Pianist was helped by our specialist musicians’ glasses. Yanna is a fascinating woman, and it has been a pleasure to collaborate with her. Her music history encompasses the traditions of her family’s heritage, (Asia Minor) and the complexity of her musical background, as evidenced by a successful career as a teacher, concert pianist, conductor, and accompanist.

Yanna was born in Thessaloniki, Greece and is a proud citizen of both Greece and the UK. She grew up with a wide range of musical influences from her parents’ unusual musical interests that covered everything from Greek folk music and Theodorakis to Tchaikovsky and Bartok.

Time to TangoA person playing a piano

Description automatically generated with medium confidence

From a young age, Yanna played the piano for her parents and their friends, reading from a piece of faded photocopied ‘fake’ sheet music with all the fashionable tangos, waltzes and ballads of the 1930s and 40s as they all sang in harmony.

Yanna is an experienced pianist and accompanist. In 1987 she was awarded the Dimitri Sgouros ‘Prize and Scholarship’ by the New Conservatory of Thessaloniki from where she graduated in 1988 with the ‘Diploma for Piano performance and teaching’. 

London Calling

She continued her piano and conducting studies at the Royal Academy of Music in London, where she was awarded the Cipriani Potter Exhibition prize during her second year as an ‘Advanced Studies’ student. She graduated with the ‘Diploma of Advanced Studies’ in 1990. Yanna moved to the US in 1991 where she gained her Master’s degree in ‘Piano Performance and Literature’ at the Eastman School of Music, Rochester NY U.S.A. in 1993.

After a 10-year worldwide concert career, Yanna settled in the UK where she raised a family, taught the piano privately and classroom music since 1993. Since 2018, Yanna is getting back to performing professionally and is currently preparing her first solo CD album which is due to be released in December 2022.

In 2018 Yanna co-founded ANIMO, a flute and piano duo, with her friend Sarah Waycott. Since 2019, she is the proud owner of a Gustav Klimt (Goldene Adele) Bosendorfer 214 VC which she has used for several recordings, Animo’s first and second CD albums and weekly Livestreams during the last few years.
A picture containing person, music, indoor, window

Description automatically generated

Yanna needed to see the music

Having always had a relatively high myopic prescription Yanna is an experienced spectacle wearer. However, the varied focusing distance required of a professional pianist was beginning to present her with the problems associated with presbyopia which are very familiar to us at Allegro Optical. Yanna needed to see her music on the stand, her musical collaborators and ideally a good view in her periphery.

Yanna first contacted Allegro Optical in February 2020, just before the COVI|D-19 crisis and the ensuing national lockdown.

She explained that she played a grand piano and had begun to struggle with blurry notes and indistinguishable shapes and lines. Yanna told us that when playing professionally and performing downlighters or overhead lighting reflected and displaced the image she saw. This caused all the notes to become blurry. The reading glasses that were made for her were impractical and her varifocal lenses gave too narrow a field of view.

Yanna booked her first appointment with Allegro Optical for Friday 27th March in Greenfield, Saddleworth. That was unfortunately postponed due to the first 2020 lockdown and Yanna didn’t get to visit us until September the same year. In the meantime, Yanna began having some issues with a retinal tear and was referred to Birmingham Midland Eye Center for further advice and investigation.

Following her discharge from the hospital in August 2020, Yanna contacted us again and we arranged an appointment in September of the same year.

A bit of a conundrum

The day of Yanna’s visit was an extremely busy day, with a very full clinic. Optometrist and flautist Amy carried out a thorough eye examination and noted Yanna’s complex ocular history and her many working distances. She then produced a prescription

covering all Yanna’s working distances and then introducing her to dispensing optician Sheryl.

Sheryl took all of Yanna’s facial measurements to help her find a frame that fitted perfectly, both in terms of comfort and performance. Well-fitted frames would provide the perfect mount for Yanna’s complex lenses. The frame also had to be practical but reflect Yanna’s unique style and work with her deep colouring. They also had to stay put while Yanna was playing. Little did the pair realise this meeting was to be the start of a long-time collaboration and Yanna now works with Allegro Optical to help us develop musicians’ eye care further and to raise awareness among performing artists of the need for specialist eye care.

Multiple distances require multiple solutions

After some discussion, Sheryl was concerned that including her correction for an elevated music stand in one pair, would compromise Yanna’s field of view and posture. To give the very best solution they settled on one pair of varifocals for everyday wear and another for use with a music stand.

Yanna opted for a Hook LDN HKS011 frame in Navy and Tortoise as the colours complimented her colouring, reflecting her personality while providing a comfortable fit and good lens size. We glazed these lenses with an individualised freeform varifocal in 1.74 index lenses with Transitions® Signature® GEN 8™, the first intelligent photochromic lens with their breakthrough nanocomposite technology that enhances photochromic performance and provides optimal vision, comfort and all-day protection.

Something for the piano

To provide the widest possible area for music (about 1.2 meters across and elevated) Sheryl dispensed a pair of spectacles with our Fogoto lenses to provide the widest and deepest field possible.

This time Yanna opted for a traditional yet iconic style of frame, choosing the Anglo American 313, HYBG. Again we decided to glaze these lenses with Transitions® Signature® GEN 8™. Yanna’s music room has a lot of glass with two huge windows. Glare is often a problem and a photochromic lens option appealed to her.

Things don’t always go to plan

When Yanna collected her new spectacles she was delighted with the varifocals, but it quickly became apparent that there was an issue with the right eye in the music spectacles. While the vision in her left eye was in her words “amazing” the music in the right side of her right eye appears blurred. We invited Yanna back for further investigation. Optometrist and Gospel Singer Gemma carried out a detailed eye exam and found that Yanna had some partial defects on her binocular visual field exam, possibly caused by some slight scarring. Yanna had developed a “Weiss ring”, a circular peripapillary attachment that forms following a Posterior Vitreous Detachment (PVD) from the optic nerve head. We then worked some prism into Yanna’s lens design to try to resolve the issue by moving the image she sees from the scarred area of the retina.

Yanna visited Birmingham Midland Eye Centre again in March 2021 but decided against vitrectomy surgery because of the risk of retinal detachment. In January 2022 Yanna felt she needed a change of glasses and she again travelled up to Meltham. This time she saw Optometrist and fellow pianist Liz. Liz conducted a 3D OCT examination which revealed a large mass of floaters from Yanna’s previous PVD in the right eye and a partial PVD in the left eye.

Time lapse

Since her last visit, we had invested in a Saccadic Clinical Eye Tracker allowing Liz to assess binocular function while the patient is sight-reading or making a series of saccades or performing other complex tasks. This was a game-changer for Yanna as the examination revealed her binocular vision to be a little unstable. Her fixation disparity varied and prisms now preferred the opposite to phorias. Liz also found that while the right eye was dominant in the distance Yanna was now left eye dominant near. The floaters in her right eye also seemed to be causing problems.

The trick now was to create a pair of spectacles that would help Yanna to continue playing despite all her vision problems. Sheryl designed a pair of lenses that would make the most of Yanna’s limited vision in her right eye. With a difference of nearly three diopters, there was a danger of double vision caused by differing image sizes. This was resolved by using different indices and asphericising the right lens to reduce minification. Using computer numeric control technology we were able to create a lens that minimised optical aberrations giving Yanna the best vision possible.

When Yanna collected her glasses we ran the same Saccadic Clinical Eye Tracker exam with her new glasses on. The exam revealed no binocular problems whatsoever. Yanna was delighted and it wasn’t long before she left the following Google review.

Yanna said; “Probably the most thorough, knowledgeable and persistent in getting results opticians I have ever encountered! I went to Allegro Optical initially for musician’s glasses. I really wanted to be able to see more when performing on stage and to be able to communicate with my duo colleagues rather than looking at a foggy outline or having to swap glasses all the time.  Unfortunately, a retinal tear that developed immediately after I made my first appointment in 2020 and COVID getting in the way of everything, we had to work around many difficulties, none of which deterred the owner Sheryl Doe, who was determined to make me the best possible pair of glasses as close to the original brief as possible. And in April 2022 they did! I am the very happy owner of two fantastic pairs of specs, one varifocal and the other my “magic” pair for playing the piano and working on the computer. This was all possible thanks also to their new saccadic eye scanner which showed them exactly the kind of issues I had to struggle through when I was reading a score. The result is miraculous! I can see better, my eyes are more relaxed, I am not getting a single headache from reading music or working on the computer and as for my varifocals, it’s like I am not wearing glasses, that’s how comfortable they are! Allegro, Optical thank you!

I would recommend Allegro’s unique skills to anyone, particularly if you are struggling with any eye issues or you want to be able to read music effortlessly. Superb service in every way!”

Why do musicians come to Allegro Optical?

As an independent family run business, we are gaining an international reputation for professional excellence and an inventive approach to meeting customer needs.

Now known internationally as the ‘Musicians Opticians’ we are attracting many clients from across Europe and further afield. Our groundbreaking work with performers, players and conductors has resulted in Allegro Optical becoming the first and only opticians to gain registration with the British Association for Performing Arts Medicine (BAPAM).

We treat each client as an individual and it is true that no two musicians are the same, So why should their vision correction be? We enjoy creating unique lenses to meet a musician’s particular needs. As musicians ourselves we can ask the right questions and interpret the answers accordingly.

Award-winning eye-care

So successful has Allegro Optical been in helping performers that this year alone we have scooped no less than five national and regional awards. These awards include the National ‘Best New Arts & Entertainment Business of the Year‘ at a gala event in London. Managing Director Sheryl Doe was awarded the 2019 ‘Dispensing Optician of the Year‘ and in 2021 Allegro Optical Dispensing Optician Kim Walker scooped the same title.

The company has been featured in many national publications including The Times 4BarsRest, The British Bandsman and Music Teacher Magazine.
Are you a musician who is struggling with their vision? Is making music no longer the enjoyable experience it once was? If so call us at Greenfield on 01457 353100, Marsden 01484 768888 or Meltham on 01484 907090.

Categories
Music

Guest blog by pianist Norma Wilson

Norma Wilson is a pianist and flautist from the West Country. She first visited Allegro Optical in 2020 and has since collaborated with us on several projects including The RSM & BAPAM, Sustaining A Career Into Old Age podcast. 

In this blog, Norma talks about how Wet Macular Degeneration has impacted her career and how she manages her condition to continue playing.

Wet Macular Degeneration – a musicians perspective.

I am a keen amateur musician.  From a young age I would borrow music scores from the library and I am a proficient sight-reader.  In 2016 I was diagnosed with Wet Macular Degeneration in both eyes. The onset was very sudden ( I noticed Fiona Bruce looked beetroot colour with a very long face when I watched the News) and when the second eye was affected I was devastated when the Eye Consultant said it could affect the way I read music. 

I had noticed that when I looked at music notation the lines were wavy, there were some blurry patches.  The main problem was the light, I would get a sparkling effect when I moved my eyes from the score to the keyboard and back again.  The light was refracted and I had a general feeling that my vision was distorted.  

Fortunately, I read an article about Allegro Optical, in SideView, the Macular Society Newsletter.  I live in Bristol but made the journey to Meltham to see if they could help me. Allegro Optical describe themselves as a musicians’ optician.  It was a very different eye assessment, I took music along, there was a piano and a music stand.  The measuring process to make me special ‘music reading glasses’ took quite a while.  Allegro Optical have a piano and music stands, so I took some music with me and my flute which I play as well as the piano. 

  • I had an eye test, which included an OCT scan, a field of vision scan my eye movements were tracked and I had an eScoop assessment for my AMD.
  • They measured the distance between the music score to my eyes both seated at the piano and standing with my flute in front of a music stand.  They were trying to find my ‘working distance’  in my case 21 “
  • My previous optician had tried several times to make me some music reading glasses, they were single view with increased magnification, but that did not address the problem and created more distortion and reduced the field of vision. 
  • Allegro Optical were considering colour and prism. They measured eye to music, eye to stand, eye to piano and how wide my field of vision was. I was persuaded to have a slight yellow filter, I have to say this has helped reduce the sense of eye strain. 

When we consider how a musician reads a score we know that

  • You often read more than one line at a time, treble and bass clefs, but if you play with other people you read across four or more staves.  Your eyes are looking up and down and across. If you then turn your gaze away from the score to look at your fellow musicians you are looking into a different light source and back again. 
  • Light is of the essence, so getting advice on this is important. 
  • Relying solely on reading from a paper score is not always easy so over the years I have been advised to get an IPad Pro (larger iPad A4) and to use several Apps:
  • it depends greatly on which software is used, but Scoringnotes.com for instance tends to make adaptations that work for the visual effect of the score.
    > More detailed information on this can be found here:
    https://www.imore.com/best-music-reading-apps-ipad
    https://www.musicnotes.com/now/tips/the-3-best-hands-free-page-turners/
  • IMSLP  International Music Score Library Project  it started in February 2006. It is a project for the creation of a virtual library of public domain music scores based on the wiki principal. There is  forScore, Piascore, Musescore etc

I was advised that I scan my own score and then get it in Dropbox and then get that into the App ForScore which I use on the iPad. But whether or not you do that or just download, the important thing to get it bigger is to have an iPad Pro (large screen size) and then turn it on its side. That makes the music much bigger—though of course then you have to turn the page twice as much! Using an iPad also helps because it is backlit so the light is more consistent. 

It is important for me that I continue to play music as I age and with my specialist music reading glasses, iPad and the use of various Apps I know I can continue for many years to come. 

Norma Wilson

Categories
News

Wind Musicians and Glaucoma January is Glaucoma Awareness Month at the “Musicians’ Optician”

The month of January is Glaucoma Awareness Month, a time to raise awareness of the leading cause of irreversible blindness. We take Glaucoma very seriously at Allegro Optical since many of our staff members are wind instrumentalists. 

Researchers have recently concluded that musicians who play high-resistance wind instruments may be more inclined to develop glaucoma. This is because blowing into high-resistance wind instruments causes the body to automatically perform a Valsalva manoeuvre in response to certain stimuli. Wind instrumentalists take a breath, but before they begin playing there is a momentary hesitation as their tongues rise up and lock in place, building up air pressure in their mouth.

Focusing on musicians eye pressure

JS Schuman demonstrated in 2000 that playing notes with high resistance and amplitude increases eye pressure significantly. When playing their instruments, high- and low-resistance wind musicians experience a transient increase in intraocular pressure (IOP). Optometrists measure this with the puff of air test. Players with high resistance to wind experience a greater increase in IOP than those with low resistance to wind. 

A small but significantly higher incidence of visual field loss (loss of peripheral vision) was observed among wind musicians who had high resistance.  According to JS Schuman, long-term intermittent elevations in IOP during the playing of high-resistance wind instruments, such as a trumpet, can result in glaucomatous damage that could be misdiagnosed as normal-tension glaucoma.

Soprano and Alto Saxophonists, French Horn players, Soprano Cornet players and Oboists experienced smaller increases in IOP. Once a musician stops blowing into the instrument, the IOP returns to normal. During playing instruments, these players may experience “transient” (in terms of hours) periods of increased eye pressure. Because it has not been studied, no one knows how common glaucoma is among high-resistance wind instrument players. A musician who has more than one risk factor is probably more susceptible to glaucoma. A short-sighted professional trumpet player with a family history of glaucoma, for example, would have an extremely high risk of developing glaucoma.

Who Is Susceptible To Glaucoma?

Glaucoma and its effects should be of concern to everyone. Some people are at greater risk of developing this disease because of certain conditions related to it. Among them are:

  1. Those with a family history of glaucoma.
  2. People of Afro-Caribbean origin are four times more likely to get glaucoma than Caucasians.
  3. Short-sightedness (needing glasses to see at distance) increases the risk of developing primary open-angle glaucoma. Another type of glaucoma, angle-closure glaucoma, is more common in long-sighted individuals (who require glasses for near tasks).
  4. Glaucoma is also more likely to affect people with diabetes, those who have had eye injuries, or those who have had long-term treatment with steroids.

What is Glaucoma?

Glaucoma is not one disease. In reality, it is caused by various diseases that affect the eye. These diseases cause glaucoma by gradually deteriorating the cells of the optic nerve, which transmits visual impulses from the eye to the brain. The nature of glaucoma can be clarified by understanding how the eye works.

An eye is filled with a jelly-like substance referred to as vitreous. In the front of the eye, a small compartment, the anterior chamber, is filled with a watery fluid, the aqueous humor, which not only nourishes the cornea and lens but also provides the necessary pressure to maintain the eye’s shape. Intraocular pressure, or IOP, is the name given to this pressure. 

A gland behind the iris produces aqueous humor, called the ciliary body. After nourishing both the cornea and lens, it drains through a thin, spongy tissue only one-fiftieth of an inch wide, called the trabecular meshwork. As this drain clogs, aqueous humor cannot leave the eye at the speed it is produced. Consequently, the fluid backs up and the pressure in the eye increases.

Damage caused in the eye by increased pressure

The optic nerve can be damaged by glaucoma. Gradually, this nerve deteriorates, causing blind spots in the visual field, particularly in the periphery. Normally, the “cup” in the centre of the optic disc is quite small in comparison with the entire optic disc. When the optic nerve is damaged by glaucoma, the nerve fibres begin to die because of increased pressure in the eye and/or a loss of blood flow. As a result of glaucoma, the optic nerve cup enlarges (and in reality, the optic nerve enlarges as a result). Although the exact reason for this occurrence is unknown, increased eye pressure is likely to be the cause of this nerve damage. 

We all want to enjoy as long a music-making career as possible, we all know making music isn’t just a hobby, it’s a passion and a way of life. So protect your sight reading by looking after your eye health and your vision. If you can’t sight read the music on the stand you won’t be able to play it. 

Protect your vision and extend your playing career by following a few simple tips. Here are some habits that can reduce the risk of glaucoma-related vision loss include:

  • Have regular eye exams, at least once every two years
  • If you have a family history of glaucoma then have an exam every year
  • Consume lots of leafy greens and fruits
  • Regular and moderate exercise is essential
  • Stay healthy by maintaining a healthy weight
  • Consume coffee moderately, or better yet, sip tea instead
  • Avoid smoking

Give your eyes a little TLC during Glaucoma Awareness Month? Call Allegro Optical in Greenfield or Meltham to schedule an appointment! The best way to maintain good eye health is to have regular eye exams at all ages!

Categories
News

She did it! Insp-eye-ering Optician Kim scoops national award

Kim Walker – Dispensing Optician of the Year 2021

We are absolutely delighted to announce that our Dispensing Optician Kim Walker has won the prized 2021 UK Optician Awards Dispensing Optician of the Year Award. Kim’s contributions during the COVID-19 pandemic are acknowledged by this award. 

This is Allegro Optical’s second Opticians Awards win in three years, which recognises excellence in the UK’s optical industry. Managing Director, Dispensing Optician Sheryl Doe scooped the prestigious award in 2019

An angel for the NHS

In addition to her work in practice Kim and her colleagues have been dispensing prescription safety eyewear to frontline NHS staff at Calderdale and Huddersfield NHS Foundation Trust, Mid Yorkshire Trust Hospitals, and St James’s University Hospital Leeds. Kim has worked tirelessly for the past year to provide as many frontline NHS staff as possible with prescription eye protection as they battle the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Kim worked long hours in practice and at the Hospitals, seeing up to 50 patients a day. Even on her day off, she has gone to work and often stayed overnight due to bad weather. Often under challenging conditions, Kim has dispensed and fitted over 2000 pairs of safety glasses to NHS frontline workers, completing over 4000 appointments. Kim has been emotionally drained at times, but ever the professional, she has not let that affect her  work.

An eye on the prize

Even though Kim felt a little overwhelmed by the honour, she and Allegro Optical are thrilled to be recognised nationally once again in this way. When asked about her award Kim said ““It was a privilege to be shortlisted let alone win, I feel truly humbled and this is one the highlights of my life.”

This latest national award is a testament to Kim’s professionalism, experience, dedication, continued high level of service delivery, and Allegro Optical’s use of cutting-edge technology. 

Technology and Professionalism

Allegro Optical we pride ourselves on combining award-winning customer service with cutting-edge technology, including optical coherence tomography (OCT) scanners in both Meltham and Greenfield. With OCT imaging the Allegro Optical eye care professionals can detect signs of serious eye conditions up to 4 years earlier than with traditional methods.

We have just invested in Clinical Eye Trackers for both practices, another first in the area. Allegro Optical Optometrists and Dispensing Opticians now have a new tool to evaluate and test eye movements and binocular vision. This allows the team to provide clients with the best optical solutions in the area.

In addition to OCT and Clinical Eye Trackers, both practices now have colorimeters which are used to assess symptoms of visual stress, and other conditions including migraine, photo-sensitive epilepsy or acquired brain injuries. A grand reopening will take place in January 2022 to unveil the new equipment and the new refit. 

We are very proud to represent Holmfirth and Saddleworth nationally and continue to provide a high level of service to their loyal and local customers. 

If you would like to experience award winning eye care and the very latest in ophthalmic technology, all in sumptuous and welcoming surroundings call one of our teams in Meltham on 01484 907090 or Greenfield on 01457 353100

Categories
About Allegro

Janet’s Spectacular eyewear styling journey

From Boring Binns to Glorious Glasses 

We recognise that selecting new glasses is a pain for most individuals. In most other circumstances, you’re left to “self-select” your eyewear from a dizzying assortment of potentially thousands of options. This merely increases your chances of selecting the incorrect frame! Now combine the new spectacle frame dilemma with a very strong prescription and you have a recipe for disaster.

It was in early May that Janet approached us having heard about the Allegro Optical Eyewear Styling approach to choosing new glasses. Having purchased new glasses a few months earlier from a local competitor Janet was disappointed with her appearance in the glasses. Her lens thickness and her quality of vision correction. 

At Allegro Optical, we provide a more refined method of purchasing eyewear. Our Eyewear Styling Consultation enables our registered dispensing opticians to help our clients select new glasses. It is intended to alleviate the frustrations and inconveniences that come with selecting new glasses. Our individual approach saves clients considerable time and effort. It also eliminates the random and often disorderly approach to selecting new glasses. It will make the entire purchasing experience more pleasurable and gratifying. Eyewear styling clients receive expert guidance and recommendations to suit their personality, colouring, face shape and visual needs.

Time to show Janet’s true colours

After a few minutes of discussion with Janet, we were able to get to know her style preferences and attitude to colour. We then analysed Janet’s colouring and facial features, took some facial measurements and discussed her lens preferences. Our aim is to provide clients with a calm and pleasurable experience. We help them to enjoy the process of trying on frames from our hand-curated range of eyewear. Clients can also enjoy either a great pot of tea or a cafetière of fresh coffee. Alternatively, a glass of wine or Prosecco may be more your style.

Having spent some time with Janet, we discovered that she has a creative and natural styling personality and favours a cool colour palette. Janet has quite angular features, fabulous cheekbones and beautifully arched brows which we wanted to accentuate. 

We selected six frames of the correct size for Janet to choose from, she settled on the very first one we showed her, a stunning frame by Oliver Goldsmith. A beautiful medium grey tortoise acetate with a very subtle cat-eye shape, the frame has a polished Italian acetate front, with brushed steel sides and matching temple tips.

Outside Prescriptions Welcome

Janet brought her prescription from her previous optician with her. Our Optometrist, Sara Ackroyd, checked the notated powers then we set about choosing Janet’s lenses. Janet is amblyopic, in other words, she has what is often referred to as a lazy eye and she has a very strong prescription. We settled on the thinnest possible resin lenses, choosing a 1.74 index with lenticularisation to thin the edges. 1.74 index resins are ultra-high index lens materials that are used to make lenses that are extremely thin. Perfect for Janet prescription. As Janet has quite an active lifestyle she wanted Transition lenses and favoured the grey colour change as it complimented her frames.  

On closer inspection

As Janet’s prescription is so strong she prefers to have separate glasses for reading and distance. For her reading glasses, she chose a beautiful frame by the bold Dutch manufacturer Outspoken, opting for the Outspoken OA2021. We glazed this frame with a 1.67 resin, again using lenticularisation to thin the edges. The 1.67 index lens material provides a perfect base for thinner lenses and has strong impact resistance. Again, Janet opted for a grey Transitions 8 coating so that she can enjoy reading in the sun. 

Having joined “Eyeplan” (our eye care scheme), Janet is safe in the knowledge that she has fully insured her glasses against accidental damage. The scheme also gives her unlimited eye care, whenever she needs it and preferential rates on all purchases. So it was no surprise that after collecting her first pair of glasses Janet decided to purchase some sunglasses.

Time for some fun in the sun

Janet was delighted with her reading glasses, her lens thickness and her quality of vision in them. She was so pleased, she decided to order some prescription sunglasses and settled on two pairs of Aspinal of London. Janet chose the Palmero Sunglass in two colours, the Opal and the Mink. 

While the design of these frames was inspired by the 1960s Italian glitterati culture, they still feature some contemporary elements. For a delicate designer touch, each piece is lightly decorated with Aspinal of London’s identifiable logo and branding, making these frames instantly recognisable. 

Janet opted for a very dark tinted, high index lens, with a dual surface anti-reflection coating. This helps to reduce glare and give a better cosmetic appearance. Sometimes high prescription lenses can appear to be quite thick and heavy.

Not wanting a spectacle

Now that Janet has a fantastic spectacle wardrobe, she is all set for any occasion. That said, she still wanted contact lenses for occasional use, for those moments when wearing glasses isn’t practical. Janet preferred Acuvue Oasys 1 Day Lenses as they give her the flexibility to wear them just occasionally. These lenses have a good expiry date, allowing her to keep a box for when she wants them without committing to a regular supply. Although she does have the option to have regular deliveries of just 30 pairs to her home address every three months if she wishes.

A word from the lady herself

Now Janet has a fabulous spectacle wardrobe and is enjoying her eyewear once again. We asked Janet how she felt about her eyewear styling journey with Allegro Optical. Her response was as follows;

“Too often I have felt a sense of ‘making-do’ with frames that simply fit my prescription to avoid thick lenses, with little attention to whether they suit my face or indeed have any style or flair to them. In contrast, I am delighted with my spectacles from Allegro, as encouraged by Sheryl I chose some beautifully stylish, up-to-date frames that make me look younger and feel brighter when I see my reflection in a mirror. The attention to detail in lenses so thinned-down and neatly fitted is exceptional, and the customer care has felt personal and entirely tailored to my individual needs. What more can I say? I highly recommend Allegro Opticians and am delighted to have found a local optician that I can rely on.”

Love your eyewear

Because we wear our glasses all day and rely on them to see correctly, comfort, style and function are equally important parts of the overall glass-wearing experience. It can also make choosing the right pair of glasses seem intimidating and challenging. A qualified, GOC registered dispensing optician can guide you through the maze of choosing the right glasses for you. Our dispensing opticians are trained, eyewear stylists. They are able to suggest alternatives and even make the experience enjoyable. They will find frames that fit perfectly. Frames that are suitable for your prescription and most importantly help you to feel confident in your eyewear. 

Enjoy some eye time

The process we use is geared to making you feel comfortable with your choice of eyewear, give you confidence when wearing your glasses and help you fall in love with your eyewear. We’d also like to add that eyewear styling isn’t just for the ladies! Gentlemen can also benefit from an eyewear consultation to assist them in selecting frames that match their individuality, business persona or reflect their personality. 

Glasses can help people understand you for who you are, or they can help you portray the image you want. The idea is to get the best glasses frames to project the image you want while still suiting your personality and lifestyle. That goes for ladies and gentlemen.

Book your consultation and enjoy some eye time

With our Eyewear Styling Consultation, you’ll get more personalised service and better advice. You’ll enjoy a relaxed and courteous consultation with a member of our dispensing team, instead of looking through hundreds of frames that don’t suit you or fit you well. It could also be a lot of fun.

To book your personal eyewear styling consultation, simply call us in Greenfield, Saddleworth on 01457 35310 or Meltham, Holmfirth on 01484 907090 and have a chat with one of our friendly teams.

Categories
About Allegro News

A passion for purple in 2021

Passionate-purple-2021

2021, our year of colour?

2020 was a memorable year for all the wrong reasons. For many of us, it was an emotional, and challenging year. We’ve all had to deal with COVID19, social distancing and many of us have lost loved ones and colleagues. Our Greenfield practice also had to cope with a burglary just before Christmas, when thieves broke in and stole all our sunglasses, computers and glasses frames.  This left us with very little stock. We have pulled out all the stops and restocked the practice over the seasonal break with some fabulous new frames. We will be focusing on the new ranges over the next few weeks, but today we are looking at colour and how to wear it. If you haven’t visited Allegro Optical yet you won’t have had one of our colour and eyewear styling consultations. 2020 can only be described as a really trying year for everyone, with all the challenges you may want to start adding a little more colour to your wardrobe. Let’s face it, we all want to cheer things up a bit.  Everyone who comes for a colour and eyewear styling consultation with Allegro Optical receives a palette of 44 colours that work specifically for them. However, there are some shades which will work for most people, when combined carefully with other colours. Opting for a universal shade is a great place to start. Here we take you through one of those magical universal shades so you can add a splash of colour, knowing it’ll work for you.

Purple

The colour of Kings and Emperors, regal and refined, purple is a classic shade that works for everyone, without exception. The universal shade of purple is medium in shade and surprisingly a very similar to the shade to a particular chocolate wrapper that is very popular at this time of year. Most colour pallets can wear this shade on its own without needing to add anything else. Passionate purple 2021 If you’re curious to discover ALL the colours and frame styles that will work for you, as well as how to wear them then get in touch by calling #Greenfield 01457 353100 or #Meltham 01484 907090
Categories
About Allegro News

A stocking full of festive eye facts

Festive eye facts
It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas, like us you’re probably enjoying all the festive sights our eyes allow us to see. From beautifully twinkling and bedecked Christmas trees to sparkling fairy lights and those brightly wrapped presents under the tree. Have you ever thought about how different Christmas would be without our vision?  Take a minute or two to learn a few interesting facts about our eyes (we’re fairly certain a few will be a surprise!
  1. Did you know that our eyes are one of the first organs to develop after conception?. In fact, a fetus’s eyes begin to develop just two weeks after conception. 
  2. Incredibly our eyes weigh just 7 grams each (or a quarter of an ounce for those of us who still use imperial). 
  3. They measure just 24.2 millimetres in diameter, just over 1 inch.
  4. When we are born, our eyes are about 70% of the size they will reach in adulthood. That said, our ears and our noses never stop growing.
  5. Our eyes are complex organs. They are composed of more than 2 million parts – every one has a specific function!
  6. Amazingly the muscles responsible for moving our eyes are the strongest in the body relative to their size.
  7. The eyes our friends and family see aren’t exactly the whole picture. In fact, just one-sixth of our eyes are visible.

Eyelashes

  1. If we took all the eyelashes we shed throughout our lives and line them up end to end, it would measure over 30 meters, that’s almost 100 feet in length!
  2. Our eyelashes are more than just a pretty facial feature. They actually do a job! They catch dust and debris before any nasty substances can get into our eyes.

Blinking

  1. On average, we all blink about 12 times each minute. Less if looking at a computer screen. This is why it’s important to remember to look away occasionally and give those eyes a rest.
  2. On average a blink takes about 0.3 seconds. If we were to add up all our blinks throughout the day, it would amount to about 30 minutes. A bit of a cat nap really!
Tears
  1. As we grow older we all produce fewer tears. This is the reason why dry eyes become problematic as we age.
  2. Our tears are essential to help us see clearly and to maintain the health of our eyes.
  3. Did you know that our bodies make three types of tears; 
  1. a) Basal tears are in our eyes all the time, they lubricate, nourish and protect our corneas
  2. b) Reflex tears are formed when our eyes need to wash away harmful irritants, such as foreign bodies. Our eyes release them in greater amounts than basal tears. They also contain more antibodies to help us fight bacteria and infections.
  3. c) Emotional tears are produced in response to many feelings such as joy, sadness, and fear. 
Our eyes and our brain 
  1. Each of our eyes has a small blind spot. This is the point where the optic nerve passes through our retinas. We rarely notice this lack of visual information because our brains fill in the blind spot based on information from the other eye.
  2. Our visual cortex is the part of our brain that processes our vision. Physically, the visual cortex is at the back of the brain in the occipital lobe.
  3. As human beings vision is so important to us that it takes up more than 50% of our brain’s functionality.
At Allegro Optical we love eyes! Millions of years of evolution have made our eyes one of the most interesting and complex components of our bodies. Our eyes are truly a miracle of nature, this is why it is important to keep them healthy with regular eye exams. If it has been a while since you have had your eyes examined, contact us to arrange an appointment or call Greenfield 01457 353100 or Meltham 01484 907090
Categories
About Allegro News

Show your true colours – Tantalising teal

Tantalising Teal Collage Facebook Post

Tantalising teal, A universal colour. Or is it?

When we were choosing the new frames for this season’s collection, it quickly became known as ‘Tantalising Teal’. We realised that we’d had a bit of a teal-fest when choosing the frame colours. Teal is well known as a universal colour, a colour everyone can wear. But is this true? 
  • There are a plethora of shades of teal, ranging from soft sky to turquoise, dark teal to deep Cyan. In fact, in a recent internet search, we found 41 shades of teal. Some are soft, some are more intense, some are bright, but there is a teal out there for everyone!
  • As a colour and wardrobe staple, Teal is much more versatile than you may think. It can be teamed with so many different colours along with lighter or darker shades of itself. It’s so easy to dress Teal up or down depending on what it’s coupled with.
  • We love to wear Teal with both gold or silver jewellery. We even like to mix it up a bit!
  • Teal works well as an accent colour, but equally well as a base colour. 
Tantalising Teal Colour styling at Allegro Optical

Teal, Just your colour?

Everyone who comes to Allegro Optical for a colour and eyewear style analysis is presented with a palette of 22 colours that work specifically for them, there are also a few shades which, when combined carefully with other colours, will work for nearly everyone.  Teal works for those who have a fair skin tone and blue eyes, It also works for us brunettes with brown eyes. If you have a Soft Muted or Light palette you can mix your teals with lighter neutral colours. Those of us who have a Deep or Clear can be bolder with more striking combinations often teaming teal with another bold colour such as charcoal or chocolate. If you have a Cool complexion, try mixing your teals with cassis or aqua. Finally, if you have a warm colour palette, like our Dispensing Optician Claire, you could combine it with cream, pewter or even coral shades. Allegro Optical Greenfield Claire James and Sheryl

The psychology of colour

We often ask clients what first impressions they want to create. We also ask them how they want their new glasses to make them feel. That’s not as strange as it seems. It is well documented that the colours we wear often affect our moods and other people’s first impressions.  The definition of teal is “a dark greenish-blue” and came into common use during the first world war. Colours are frequently associated with feelings and teal is often considered as a colour of peace and tranquillity. Teal combines the calm, peace, clarity of blue with the restful, soothing and cheerfulness of green. Wearing teal makes many of us enjoy a feeling of reliability, dignity, and balance. As for first impressions, wearing teal can also imply trustworthiness and reliability. Wearing teal creates a positive response from both men and women.

16 shades of teal

Show your true colours

Memorable glasses are a great way to express yourself and help show off your own unique features.  Many of our clients like to accessorise with shoes, jewellery and handbags, some even collect them. While many people view eyewear as merely a functional device we see it as an opportunity to express ourselves.   Eyewear can frequently be the very thing which helps us celebrate our individual style. The perfect glasses can transform us, creating a memorable first impression and building confidence. 

We care about your eyecare and your eyewear

So when you visit Allegro Optical Opticians you can not only be sure that you will receive first-class eye care you can also take a journey in colour. If you would like to try our unique range of eyewear call, Greenfield, on 01457 353100 or Meltham on 01484 907090
Categories
About Allegro News

Eyewear Styling – Helping you discover your wow.

A unique Eyewear Styling Service

Did you know that Allegro Optical offers a unique Eyewear Styling Service? Exclusively for existing and new customers at their practices in Greenfield and Meltham. This individually dedicated consultation service offers our clients a unique and bespoke one-hour eyewear styling consultation. We help them to discover their perfect eyewear to suit both their optical and style needs.  Throughout the Christmas period, the consultations are free of charge following a private examination including 3D Optical Coherence Tomography (3D OCT). Let’s face it, everyone deserves a little bit of pampering at this time of year, especially after the dreadful year 2020 has been.

Eyewear Styling

The Allegro Optical dispensing team have been trained by the Eyewear Styling Academy. The team have learnt how to analyse an individual’s colour psychology, facial features, style personality and recommend the eyewear selection that will suit them best. This will enable all clients’ to feel assured they are being given an unparalleled consultation service to find them their perfect eyewear.   Practice Owner and 2019 Dispensing Optician of the Year Sheryl Doe said: ‘From experience, we have often found that clients find choosing eyewear a daunting experience. We want choosing glasses to be an enjoyable experience and we felt it was necessary to invest in a process to better help clients.”  “Our Dispensing Opticians love helping clients discover and select eyewear which they not only feel happy in but enjoy wearing! Our whole team receives regular refresher training to keep them up-to-date and new team members undertake the training as soon as possible. This ensures that they are all experts in eyewear styling and we are delighted to be able to offer this bespoke, eyewear styling consultation service to existing and new customers. Clients of all ages, gender and style preference will now be able to find their perfect and most suitable eyewear in our practice.”.

Booking a Consultation

Eyewear Styling Consultations are available daily in both practices but must be booked in advance by calling Greenfield, Saddleworth on 01457 353100 or Meltham, Holmfirth on 01484 907090  
Categories
About Allegro News

Dispensing Optician Charlotte Cassidy joins Allegro Optical Opticians in Meltham

Dispensing Optician Charlotte Cassidy wearing William Morris

Dispensing Optician Charlotte Cassidy joins our team

The whole team here at Allegro Optical opticians are delighted to welcome experienced Dispensing Optician Charlotte Cassidy. Charlotte, who has over 30 years of experience, joined our Meltham practice in October and is a valued team member. Charlotte Cassidy Dispensing Optician Previously, Charlotte managed Boots opticians in King Street, Huddersfield. She later became the resident Dispensing Optician at the New Street practice until the unit was closed following the Coronavirus pandemic outbreak. Charlotte said: “I am delighted to have joined a local family business. I am happy to be working at a welcoming, friendly and local independent practice that excels in personalised customer service.

Local staff local knowledge

Charlotte lives in Meltham with daughter Ava and her husband Russell owns and manages G Haigh Butchers in the village. She is dispensing primarily in the Meltham practice. Charlotte is also due to start an eyewear styling, colour and style analysis course. Once completed Charlotte will have a full understanding of colour; facial analysis and style personality. Charlotte will then be able to assist her clients to find their perfect eyewear. Delivering the personalised, one-of-a-kind eyewear styling service for which Allegro Optical has become famous. Managing Director and Dispensing Optician of the year 2019 Sheryl Doe said: “Charlotte has all the credentials to be a fabulous asset to Allegro Optical. I am delighted to welcome her to the team. We already have fantastic teams in place in both Greenfield and Meltham. Charlotte coming on board gives us another dimension.” Amy, Charlotte, Josie and Sheryl

Open for business

Allegro Optical is remaining open for all eyecare and hearing needs during the current lockdown and will continue to provide all its current services including ophthalmic and emergency eye care, pre-screening, dispensing, and hearing care. Research by leading industry bodies indicated that a third of the people in the UK noticed a deterioration in their eyesight during the first lockdown. For this reason, we are encouraging customers to keep their scheduled appointments, staying up to date with their eye care. While most retailers have closed under the new restrictions, opticians can remain open. We understand the concern customers have as we have moved back into a second lockdown. As a team, we would like to everyone that it is safe to go ahead and book an appointment or come in as scheduled.