Fashion

Catching Up With Mauro Massarotto Of Sheriff&Cherry

By Ellie Schneider - 23 Oct 2013

Classic frames with a quirky twist—no summer wardrobe is quite complete without a pair of Sheriff&Cherry shades. Since the design studio's foray into the world of specs, Sheriff&Cherry's signature palette of vibrant colours has been sported by the likes of Frank Ocean, Rudimental and Grimes.

We caught up with Croatian-born, Florence-educated designer Mauro Massarotto for the full story.

TUL: The Sheriff&Cherry collection pays homage to all things retro, in particular the mid 60s-late 80s. What drew you to this era?
Mauro Massarotto: Without a doubt our starting point is very retro and authentic, as we are producing sunglasses in a factory in Croatia, with more than 60 years of experience. All the frames are a product of unique craftsmanship and a very old-school way of making sunglasses.

Our goal is basically to balance the old-school approach of the production with very modern and unusual colour combinations, painting techniques and updating the old shapes and the basic technology.

We are always more interested in the future than in the past. But certainly there is some sporty chicness to our designs, that has some 60s and 70s retro flair, and some 80s colour irreverence.


TUL: Can you tell us a bit about your experience presenting the Sumer '14 collection at Paris Fashion Week?
Mauro: It was our very first solo showroom set up for Sheriff&Cherry. It was amazing to have the opportunity to meet some current customers, who helped launch the brand, and they are continuing to support us. But also a very good meeting point for new clients and the press, as Paris is without a doubt the capital of fashion and the best platform to showcase your work and your vision.

TUL: How has your mantra of a "never-ending summer" been incorporated within the collection?
Mauro: Always fun, always chic, nonchalant, happy. It's almost an "I am always on holidays" type of mantra…

TUL: Can you tell us about the limited-edition Fanzine project and collaboration with photographer Byron Spencer?
Mauro: We have been collaborating with Byron since we decided to launch our brand internationally: we love his work and his vibe. The Fanzine was a B-side of all the shooting we did during the year and we also wanted to present his environment, friends and crew. On the Fanzine we also collaborated with Biskoteka—a very talented Serbian art director.

TUL: Each pair of sunglasses is handmade in Croatia, the craft of eyewear is clearly important to the brand—what sets the quality of your sunglasses apart?
Mauro: More than 60 years of experience and very unique, old-school techniques and machinery… Our painting and colouring is impressive, it's all about the finishes…

TUL: How did your obsession with eyewear begin?
Mauro: I was always a very big fan of sunglasses and eyewear in general, but at my studio we try to design things that can change or characterise an individual . . . shoes, sneakers, accessories. But what better than a strong statement on your face! Sheriff&Cherry has been working as a studio since 2004 but I started consulting for the optical factory in 2009.

TUL: Since launching your first collection in 2012, the label has become renowned for its playful sensibilities, bold statements and vivid hues. Where do you find your inspiration?
Mauro: Boat life and everything maritime for sure. But not without travelling, friends, art, music and sport.

TUL: And what are your summer fashion essentials?
Mauro: Shorts, slides, sunscreen and a pair of Sheriff&Cherrys.

TUL: You seem to have garnered a very impressive clientele, including Frank Ocean, Rihanna, Rudimental, Grimes. Why do you think your sunglasses are so appealing to musicians?
Mauro: I am more into music than fashion…haha maybe it's a karma thing.

TUL: Quite possibly! Do you get to Sydney much? Where are your favourite spots to go?
Mauro: In the last few years I've been spending a lot of time in Sydney, especially in summer. There are so many amazing and inspiring spots to eat and to visit. It's a great city.

Bondi is very inspiring to me, Sean's Panaroma and Icebergs are always worth a visit… but I love Redleaf Pool in Double Bay—it's a very special place.


Image credit: Sheriff&Cherry

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