Big Biz: Corey Shapiro [Outtakes]
Was it at that moment that you knew you had to do it? Capitalize on your passion?
It became evident that it was possible when [I realized] nobody was doing it. Nobody was selling vintage eye wear at the time. People were starting to offer me money for glasses I was wearing having, [and had] no idea what they were. I had put a price tag on one of the glasses [I was wearing], and sold it right off my face at a club. At that point it became evident I had something going on.
It was a no-brainer at that point.
The interesting void in [the] optical industry is that glasses companies — until the past two or three years — never realized glasses were gonna be cool or wearable again, so nobody documented the optical industry in a fashion way. No one really became a fashion historian in eye wear. [Some] become a medical historian; find the evolution of glasses from the technical and medical standpoint. But not documentation of fashion houses that produce these glasses. Even if we failed, we were definitely able to write books about it and become historians in [the field].
Who became your first big client?
I think my first big name artist that I was very familiar with was probably Redman, actually. Not that he was a large client, but he was probably one of the first major rap artists. That was about six years ago. My first client that was a major artist was Ryan Leslie. Ryan was dating Cassie at the time, and him and Cassie came to meet me at this show we were doing and they went crazy for this stuff. Those were my first major artists that got into it. It steamrolled amongst the community. Not only were our products were different, but our knowledge and passion is different. We’d give them history; they would understand why we chose for them, historical relevance, where [they were] made, what happened to [the] company. Complete history. They understand what it is they should be wearing, and where they are trying to go with whole style.