Persol: the pioneers of Italian cool

EDGAR profiles the sunglasses brand of choice for James Dean and Steve McQueen.

November 10, 2014

Who: Italian luxury eyewear company.

Founded: 1917.

Known for: Creating flexible frames and the iconic folding glasses.

Trademarks: The silver arrow.

Celebrating the dolce vita

In the 1960s, nothing showcased cool, Italian charm quite like Persol’s iconic Model 649 shades. Worn by everyone from Greta Garbo and James Dean to Steve McQueen. The frames became a calling card for Hollywood’s finest living the good life.

Daggers, dodgers and dames

film noir Persol sunglasses.

Diving glasses-first into the smoky and intriguing world of Film Noir, Persol’s latest collection takes inspiration from Hollywood’s golden age. Iconic characters from the genre include gangster, detective and femmes fatale, all of which are given a modern reinterpretation with thick, dark-rimmed frames and the introduction of the new Pheonix Arrow.

The trademark: Persol's silver arrow

Silver arrow Persol. In 1938, Persol introduced a silver arrow shape to decorate the hinge and stem of its frames. Supposably inspired by the swords of ancient warriors, the mark would became the company’s unmistakable symbol that you still find on every pair of Persol’s frames today.

Pride and protection

Persol Steve McQueen sunglasses. Made famous by Steve McQueen in the 1960s, Persol’s foldable PO714 sunglasses highlight the brand’s two biggest assets: ever-stylish aesthetics and boundary-pushing creativity.

Details: visit