The start of wooden sunglasses
Vilo was created by Francesca and Josh. After travelling the world and experiencing the wide variety of people and cultures, they settled back home in beautiful New Zealand.
Needing a new pair of sunglasses and tired of the same old plastic frames, Josh set out to find something better. Frustrated with the lack of progress in sunglasses design and having always loved working with wood, he discovered it could also be crafted into the perfect material for making sunglasses. Not only was it incredibly light and durable but it was hypoallergenic, natural and highly sustainable. Whilst plastic was a byproduct of the oil industry, wood was grown from nature.
A new design of sunglasses
"We love the natural warmth and absolute uniqueness wood has to offer. Whilst a factory can spit out 10,000 pairs of plastic sunglasses totally cloned in absolute uniformity, each pair of wood sunglasses is totally unique and a one off piece of craftsmanship that will never ever be repeated. I believe in today's crowded world, people want products that display a sense of individuality and a closer connection with nature and wood allows that opportunity like no other material."
Seeing a gap in the market they went on to create a line of wood sunglasses that were light and stylish whilst still maintaining the sun protection of UV400 filtering and polarised lenses demanded by customers today. By using laminated wood, they could make designs which were thinner and stronger whilst avoiding the thickset, clunky designs of other brands.
As a nurse and helicopter pilot, Josh & Francesca had seen many parts of the world where extreme poverty was a way of life and people were vulnerable to being exploited by those wishing to profit at other peoples expense. Seeing an opportunity to create a truly financially sustainable business model where profits were recycled back to people in need, Vilo began supporting the organisation A21, dedicated to eliminating slavery and human trafficking. To support that goal, Vilo donates 10% of all profits to A21.