Last Updated on 8th October 2012

Accessory shopping, I’d like to think, is my forte. Drawn far too easily to a just-landed bag or the latest crop of eye-popping statement jewellery pieces; during a financially destructive trip to Selfridges, I’ll happily make allowances for an unnecessary accessory investment from my rent fund.

But there’s a particular accessory category I haven’t quite warmed to, yet; sunglasses, and the hefty price tag that accompanies them. I may sound rather fickle, especially after declaring a soft spot for unnecessary expenditure, but standard looking sunnies that cost the equivalent of one month’s food allowance aren’t worth starving for.

It confuses me that people are willing to spend a questionable sum of money on an item so prone to damage or loss, and with sunglasses becoming a permanent fixture in daywear looks, the fashionable population is increasingly treating sunglasses as an investment purchase – but, instead happily snapping up near seven pairs a year!

The recent surge in luxe eyewear brands has afforded this previously seasonal accessory category cult status. A lizard-trimmed cat eye version by Linda Farrow Luxe will set you back a palm tingling £345, whilst Finest Seven’s 14 carat white gold-plated aviator sunnies will see you part with a meaty sum of £645. Fashion Editors (most notably La Wintour) have always seen the sunny side (pardon the pun) to recession-inducing eyewear, including the likes of Kanye West and Rihanna, often papped sunglasses-clad, indoors, past midnight; but sadly, we’re not all blessed with a budget of Niagara proportions.

That said, it doesn’t mean I’d rule out applying my tried and tested high-low method to sunglasses shopping. Partial to snapping up pocket-friendly, on-trend eyewear at Topshop and Asos, thanks to their extensive collection of cat eye and round frame sunnies, it also works well to purchase a high end version with a classic frame that won’t be out by next season. Aviator frames are perennially cool, as are oversized square designs and wayfarers. For some inspiration visit

As high end, trend-led eyewear won’t necessarily suit everyone, let alone suit everyone’s pocket; adopt a thrifty approach to sunglasses shopping, and carefully browse designer discount websites and designer eyewear stocking sites if you’re after a high end fix without a hallucination-inducing price tag.

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