About a year ago, we paid a visit to eyewear label SUZY GLAM, founded 2012 in Utrecht, the Netherlands. Susanne and Etienne welcomed us at their home, which also served as their offices at the time, while the workshop where Susanne designed her prototypes was also right down the street. But that was then – and much has changed for the upstart label with the signature three-dimensional shapes. SUZY GLAM has found a new home in the Dutch capital, Amsterdam, where the new showroom has been displaying their own collections next to rotating guest showcases in a new pop-up store format. And of course, there’s plenty to talk about in terms of new eyewear styles… so here’s our Label Update.
SG_14_interieur_08                                         Susanne Klemm at SUZY GLAM Store, Roelof Hartstraat 32H, 1071VK Amsterdam.

Hello Susanne, last year we met in Utrecht at your home that was also your office. Now you moved to Amsterdam – just for business?
Amsterdam is a great city and I moved from Zurich to the Netherlands only because of this city. It’s a liberal city with a big variety of people and I feel very much at home here. So much so, that we also decided to move to Amsterdam for living.

What makes Amsterdam good for your business?
As our office indeed was in our home, we needed a bigger space. Amsterdam has the most international atmosphere and as most capitals, it’s just more vibrant. A bigger city also provided the opportunity to open an optical shop where we could meet our end customers. It’s important for us to see the people who actually wear our frames.

Is there a common denominator among your clients?
SUZY GLAM designs eyewear for self-confident people who like to wear beautiful accessories. Many of our clients have an interest in design and art. They understand what is special about our label. It’s about good shapes that make people look better. Strong shapes that emphasize character.

Talking about the location and design of the store, what was important for you?
I wanted to do everything by ourselves. It had to look like a SUZY GLAM store with a strong identity. Besides, we wanted to show that I am really making the prototypes myself. In the open in-store workshop, people can see the whole process of designing a frame.

Beyond the workshop, do you handle other business aspects at the store, like back office and logistics?
Yes, the store is also our head office. This combination is great and because it’s only Etienne and me, there is no reason to set up divisions in our company. We do everything at this location. But to be honest, when I’m home, work just continues. It’s not something you can switch off. Especially not when I’m in a creative process.Suzy_Glam_fastens_seatbealt_Toffee_Matt+Cappuccino-edit                                              SUZY GLAM »Fastens Seatbelt«
Sounds like a 24/7 relationship between Etienne and you.
We do everything together. Etienne’s focus is just more on the business side of the company and mine more on design. But there is no strict line. Only together SUZY GLAM is complete.

So visitors of the store get their advice from Susanne Klemm personally?
Yes, I love this aspect and it’s what I’ve been doing for many years when I worked at Nesoptiek. It’s a skill at which you become better and better. I also do the eye exams when needed.

The collection in the SUZY GLAM store is not limited to your own brand, you also offer space to independent labels. How do you choose the guest collections?
They have to be independent labels who add something new to the market. For the labels themselves it’s only interesting when they do not have a solid base in the Benelux region. They stay in our store for two months and Amsterdam is a great place to promote their brands. So far we worked with Paulino, Willems Wonderglasses, and 8000 Eyewear.

Suzy_Glam_Has_left_the_Building_Champagne+Army_Matt                                           SUZY GLAM »Has Left the Building«
Which labels are next?
We just did an opening party with Tarian. His collection will be in our store until the end of August. Next will be an interesting name from Japan, but that’s not 100 % confirmed yet.

Talking about products, which SUZY GLAM styles were the most successful so far?
We started with ‘Faces the Face,’ a facetted female frame with exactly the right balance of boldness and elegance. It’s one of my favorites and also one of our best-sellers. It will stay in the collection for a long time. ‘Rocks this Town’ is a strong male frame based on pebbles; thick and very present. A man who wears this frame must be a self-confident man. While designing it, I didn’t look at what fashion demands nowadays so we were not sure about the success. Fortunately, our clients love it.

How many frames from previous collections will make it into the upcoming range?
We don’t make a whole new collection every season. The designs should be good for a longer period. We started with six models and have now 14. So until now, the collection only got bigger and more complete. When we’ll have 15, we will think of taking a model out. At Silmo we will present two new models and one limited edition sun frame.

What’s special about the new models?
They’re a further development of existing models. Three-dimensionality is one of the key characteristics of my designs, besides the fitting. That also applies to the new models.
SuzyGlam_Break_Rules_Forrest+Nude_Matt-edit                                         SUZY GLAM »Breaks Rules«
Are you adding some new colorways?
For some existing models we have added new colors like emerald green, sea green, and concrete. We will do more and more soft tones like nude, ivory and skin colors.

Is there a common theme behind the funny-sounding model names?
SUZY GLAM is a character name and she does all kind of things that belong to her glamorous and bohemian way of living. She ‘Travels Light’ to ‘Rock this Town’ where she’s ‘Right on Time’ and ‘Spends a Fortune’ to ‘Get the Award’. When she ‘Thinks Big’ she ‘Goes Bananas’ and ‘Wants the DJ’ before she ‘Has left the Building.’

Wow, that is poetry! Thanks Susanne!