CHANEL model 5202 Q c 501 3F – secret mirrors – fw10

CHANEL mod 5202 Q  c 501 3F fw10 © sunglassespreservation

CHANEL mod 5202 Q c 501 3F fw10 © sunglassespreservation

CHANEL model 5202 Q is featured as second part of sunglassespreservation’s three part mini-series dedicated to the evolution of CHANEL quilted leather in combination with acetate, metal, glass and nylon sunglasses.

We have travelled through time since the first pair of sunglasses were produced for CHANEL retail in 1988 and have landed in fall-winter 2010, in Rue Cambon 31, Paris, where CHANEL launches their “prestige” sunglasses collection. This time the shades are not boutique exclusives but their high quality and craftsmanship make them just as worthy!

Model 5202 Q was available in many colors varying from black (included in sunglassespreservation archives) to burgundy, off-white, red, brown and tortoise. The craftsmanship and execution of these shades is impeccable. The temples are a further development of model 0000 from 1988 as we note an obvious increase in complexity. The quilted lambskin leather covers the temples on the outside while the matelasse effect and quilting stops to leave place to pure lean lambskin surface on the inner side of the temples.

The frame and tips of both temples are made in acetate. The gradient lenses on our model fade from dark grey to mid-tone grey.

These sunglasses hold a secret within them. The temples on both right and left sides open up when pressure is put on them to reveal double mirroirs. The top mirrors carry the CHANEL logo lasered into them. The mirroirs are kept closed via small magnets hidden underneath the lambskin leather. The obsessive attention to detail took the designers as far as to add an additional CHANEL logos to the top of the two silver metal mirror hinges. You can see the details on the photos provided at the bottom of this model description.

The model number, color code and size are printed onto the inner left leather covered temple while the CHANEL logo, as well as place of production, is printed on the inner right leather covered temple.

The use of these shades is various. The mirrors are a luxurious addition making this model fabulous without it having to be in any way practical. Some have said that the mirrors could be used to fix up your lipstick or check your hair quickly while on the run. However, it may result very difficult to take off your shades, keep them in one hand while getting your lipstick from your bag with the other hand and then ultimately retouching your rouge. Other speculate more frivolous and less “acceptable” uses of the mirroirs while at parties and clubs. This theory too does not stand as the shades cannot be put and kept on a flat surface while the mirroirs are open as this may compromise their balance and would lead to scratches to lenses and/or frame.

In fact, all the speculation and all the stories about the real reason the secret mirrors are a part of these sunglasses are irrelevant. What matters is that these shades, with their difficult and intricate system of secret construction and hidden mirrors, make us dream a little. They make us imagine of being in a special place. CHANEL eyewear designers managed to give us the illusion we can own a part of the dream by wearing a pair of incredibly designed shades!

The lenses have a CHANEL logo engraved into them and the right lens has an additional authentification identity code lasered into it. This code is unique to only one pair of each sunglasses produced by LUXOTTICA for CHANEL, in Italy.

CHANEL model 5202 Q showcases the progression of the use of quilted leather in CHANEL eyewear history as it represents a huge leap from model 0000’s more simple approach to material use and combination. Technology has moved forward a lot from the late eighties to the 00’s. The leather used for model 5202 Q not only covers the acetate but also envelopes the metal frames used to border the glass mirrors. The entire leather coverage was hand made, hand sewn (quilting) and hand glued to the metal and acetate!

We have kept the security plastic strips on the mirrors as the model included in our sunglassespreservation archives is new, including the round CHANEL logo sticker on the left lens.

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