A Look Inside NYC’s Outer Vision:

Outer Vision Custom Eyewear

I had the opportunity to sit down and interview one of New York City’s premier custom eyewear proprietors this week, and had my whole perception of custom eyewear blown sideways. You see, I was hoping I’d discover that custom eyewear with better-fit, custom measurement and therefore a longer life and utility, might offer an economic advantage to people who wear eyeglasses and not be just for the elite! Boy, was I right!

Phyllis Lubarsky is the energetic, fashionably chic and only slightly eccentric owner of Outer Vision on the chic miracle mile of 57th Street in Midtown Manhattan. Since 1978, Ms Lubarsky has been providing some of the top media moguls, movie and Broadway celebrities, Wall Street barons and most commercially successful fashion designers with custom eyewear.  And her reputation for quality and value has gone international with clients on virtually every continent.

But surprisingly enough, what really blew me away is that Outer Vision client’s decisions to go custom is as much an economic decision as it is based on fit, or aesthetics, or vanity.


According to Phyllis, eyewear with classic style and custom fit can last 6 years – even decades – depending on fashion, where in some of the best-case scenarios, cheap, fast, and trendy mall-store eyeglasses will not, mostly due to the lack of quality of the base materials.   How so, you may ask?  Quite simply, the cheap stuff breaks. It can’t stand up to active lifestyles.  People don’t take care of the cheap stuff as they themselves consider them to be “throw-away,” almost like fast food.  And the cheap stuff cannot hold its original fit, thereby constantly falling off your face, increasing the risk of breakage and loss.

So if you do the math – mall glasses cost about $300 – $400 each pair. Most people have to replace their broken or lost or whatever problem glasses every 2-3 years. Outer Vision custom eyewear costs on average about $750 per pair for the frames, lens prescriptions are extra, and they can last on average 10 years.

So you actually save money with custom eyewear!

OV metrics

Phyllis uses a precise and custom-designed 13-step process in the manufacturing and fulfillment of her signature custom eyewear – from initial consultation on lifestyle and functional purpose, through CGI and VR portfolio CAD systems, all the way to final personal fitting and adjustments.  Yes, she prefers to have face-to-face meetings in all phases with the clients, but many of her international customers have never been into her boutique… all measurements, selections, fittings and consultations can be performed online. That’s because Phyllis knows W-T-F she’s doing! Just ask her – she’ll tell you!

Outer Vision’s custom eyewear uses two basic materials for frames – Titanium and High Cotton content Cellulose Acetate.  And, because of the wide range of colors and tints offered in combination with material and texture, there is almost an unlimited color palette for the clients to choose from. With these core materials and the fashion-forward design skills of Phyllis helping choose specific colors, shapes, sizes and tech-fashion aesthetics, custom eyewear it truly is the smarter purchase with both style longevity (as most custom are ahead of the fashion trend curve) as well as economic advantage tipping the scales.

OV Womens

As for guarantees and warranties, an order with Outer Vision and Phyllis Lubarsky includes an 18-month manufacturer’s warranty on the frames, and a 2-year guarantee on the lenses coatings with repair or replace at no charge. Phyllis would rather have you overnight your broken glasses to her for repair, rather than have an unskilled person force-fit parts and screws into your glasses stripping the integrity they originally had.  I’m sure all of you readers can see the logic here.

A custom pair of eye-glasses from Phyllis and Outer Vision may take up to 7 weeks for delivery, but clients can track the design, prototyping, manufacture, and shipping online, similar to the way you can track Fed-Ex packages or Amazon.com deliveries.

OV Mens

So what’s stopping you from making better decisions regarding your glasses? On the one hand, with custom eyewear from Outer Vision, you have great-looking, great-fitting, long-lasting custom eyewear that truly fits your face and lifestyle.

On the other hand, with chain eyeglass stores, you have an ill-fitting, off-the-rack, same-as-everyone-else, fashion-slave statement that merely says, “Meh.”

Okay – so the wait time is a little bit longer for custom eyewear than it is for mall eyeglasses.   If all you want is an immediate approximate fix, then head to the drug store and pick up some ready-made reading glasses.  But that’s not what you want.  That’s not why you are reading this article.

You want stylish custom eyewear that fits your face, reflects your good fashion sense, exhibits your intelligence and makes you feel good.  The obvious solution is to plan ahead and deal with it.  Deal with the manufacturing time as you would with ordering a new car. If you want it custom, you have to wait for build-to-specification time frames of delivery.

With custom eyewear from Outer Vision, you have great-looking, great-fitting, long-lasting custom eyewear that truly fits your face and lifestyle.  You will have stylish custom eyewear that reflects your good fashion sense, exhibits your intelligence, magnifies your power and makes you feel good.

Having said all that – and realizing that you actually SAVE money with custom eyewear – is there really a choice?


Back to Home