Chrome Hearts - Stoned
Chrome Hearts meet Cher
As an outlier in the pantheon of heritage fashion houses, the quixotic cult status of goth-luxe lifestyle brand Chrome Hearts can be linked to its genesis as a disruptive force in American fashion. By the early 90s, Chrome Heart’s biker-chic jewellery and silver-studded leatherwear had emerged as an antidote to the super-glossy Park Avenue look that defined the era, sitting comfortably in both the pages of Vogue and in the touring wardrobes of the world’s most evocative rock’n’rollers.
In 1992, when the Council of Fashion Designers of America called up Chrome Hearts’ leather-clad founder Richard Stark to inform him that he’d won their Accessories Designer of the Year award, he never returned the call – according to Stark, he had no clue who they were. Having eventually discovered that he’d been awarded the equivalent of an Academy Award for fashion, the Harley Davidson aficionado forgot to let the CDFA know that the good friend he’d chosen to present him with his award was none other than global megastar, Cher. A Chrome Hearts superfan, Cher had not only been kitted out by Stark in a head to toe, custom-made wardrobe, she’d also chosen him to design the leather interior of her 1956 black Ford pickup truck, lovingly nicknamed, Moonstruck after her 1987 hit movie.
Music, and its creators, had been integral to Chrome Hearts style DNA since the company’s inception in an L.A. garage in 1988. But it was another early client of Stark’s who would go on to define the essence of that unique relationship and make it a hallmark of the brand’s evolving image. Laurie Lynn was an art director, and graduate of L.A.’s Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising, who met Richard Stark – her future husband – in the early 90s when she ordered a collection of leather Chrome Hearts swimsuits. As company partner, Laurie Lynn’s artistic influence was soon manifested through her photography, with raw and intimate advertising campaigns that captured the rebel attitude of rising stars in the worlds of music and fashion. By 1996, the company had opened its first boutique, a flagship store on 64th Street, Manhattan. The next step was launching one of the world’s most exclusive eyewear lines.
Chrome Hearts Eyewear is an opulent collection fusing exotic, avant-garde materials with cutting-edge technology and irreverent detailing. As a mint-condition example of that infamous design aesthetic, Stoned is a vintage sunglass evoking the Stark’s trademark rock’n’roll attitude. An exaggerated take on the classic aviator shape, the silver frame is combined with dark pink lenses for a look that’s part 2020 influencer, part old school L.A. Dagger motifs on the end-pieces and cut-away crucifix detailing on the two-tone acetate temples are intricate silver embellishments finished with the brand’s signature goth-luxe styling. As a vintage rarity, Stoned is both a standout accessory for a twenty-first wardrobe and a fashion artefact infused with Chrome Hearts’ unique cultural heritage.