It may seems strange for any business to say that, but we sincerely mean it … in certain circumstances. In fact, by this stage you’ve maybe already decided that we’re not for you – that’s fine, move along!
This is something which is quite core to everything we do here at Ocean Optometry and has been part of our journey from our very earliest discussions. When we started shifting from the pipe dream of, “We should do something”, to actually saying, “We’re doing something”, we had to consider how our office would be.
From the outset there seemed to us that there are already plenty of optometry offices serving Halifax and Nova Scotia who do a good job, providing optometric services and a fair selection of eyewear to choose from. If you want to get your eyes examined or want to get some glasses, they’ll sort you out.
So why did we need to create Ocean Optometry?
We had a need to offer something different, something new and something exciting. We wanted to create an optometry office which was contemporary, urban, relaxed, fashionable, friendly and fun to attend.
Initially we even thought that we would carry ranges from all the fashion labels and have wall-to-wall
brands covering our shelves.
We’re so glad we didn’t.
The more we looked into these ranges, the more we became disappointed! Now, these are just our personal feelings, if you like branded eyewear and they resonate with you, wear them loud and proud, it’s really important to enjoy your eyewear.
To our eyes, though, it became pretty obvious that these ranges very quickly appear somewhat generic … blah, even, they are predominantly manufactured by one of three huge corporations. They often have very little association with the actual brand they represent, in reality it tends to be a licensing agreement.
When the same few companies are manufacturing a huge amount of the eyewear, it’s little surprise that they begin to appear “samey”. When these companies then have sales and distribution channels which means that they pervade virtually every optometry office and optical, while owning their own stores as well, you do really begin to wonder just how something so generic has managed to create the allure of something exclusive … they’re “designer” after all. Or, at least we did.
Then we took a leap of real faith, we believed in our abilities and skills to do our work well. Now it was time to put our belief into products which also represented our independent nature. We sourced all of our ranges from independent companies, who deal mainly with the leading eyewear boutiques around the world … and us!
Fashion’s bleeding edge
What has been really surprising is how well this decision has been received, very pleasantly surprising! There does seem to be a real desire to get beyond the consumerism of brands and have a genuine sense of providence over the purchasing decisions we make. Eyewear is no different and folks are telling us the choices we are making are good choices!
A fortunate happenstance of this pinnacle decision is the eyewear we carry is actually at the leading edge of fashion trends. The corporations produce eyewear to sell as a commodity and volume is key, they are duty bound to maximise turnover and profit for their shareholders. Therefore they don’t lead the fashions, they follow and try to capitalise on them. Every company needs to make a profit, obviously, however, in our experience when dealing with independent companies this is not their driving goal.
When you come to Ocean Optometry you should find all of those features mentioned earlier, that we are contemporary, urban, relaxed, fashionable, friendly and fun. If this appeals to you, come right in. If you want to choose eyewear which says more about you than a corporation, then we’re definitely for you. If your sense of style is not generic, but you have an attention for detail and fine design and products then the welcome mat’s right there.
If you’re thinking that by writing this we’ve completely lost the plot and if you want a brand or label on your glasses, if you want a bargain basement deal, or a twofor proposition, then you are going to be disappointed. If you want to be just a sheep in the flock, then probably best to avoid us.
Seriously, stay away, we’re going to irritate you with our friendly cheerfulness, humour, cool musical vibes and desire to make the eyewear of the Maritimes that bit more beautiful one pair at a time. You know what, we’re not even apologetic about it!
As an aside, when I was penning this article I didn’t realise where the phrase “pipe dream” came from – every day’s a school day!