Fashion | June 11, 2023 |

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Image courtesy of Panto

Panto Glasses
The world’s most iconic glasses

The PANTO STYLE and design of optical eyeglasses is probably the single most recognized model and shape in the history of glasses. The classic Panto eyeglasses were developed in the early 1930s in the UK. The design was in more or less the same period introduced in Germany and the US. Most manufacturers of glasses in the world have had some kind of “panto-looking” glasses in their portfolio over the years. There are hardly any opticians in the world who do not know the name Panto. Although the style is recognized by so many consumers and spectacle users, the name PANTO has not been known to most people.

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Image courtesy of Panto

PANTO is eye-art. The anatomically perfected orbital shape of these vintage glasses is creating a natural frame around the eyes.
PANTO is fashion. Over the last 100 years, it has gained the position of the icons of eyeglasses.
PANTO is “THE MIRROR OF THE SOUL” – the frame of the eyes that reflects and enhances the personality of the user.

Sivertzen has for years been developing the Panto Brand, based on the original true Panto that was now mostly found by antiquarians. PantoGlasses is now truly going global. The Panto model is already 100 years old and is the most famous and iconic shape of glasses on the planet. Almost every producer of eyeglasses frames has had one or more “panto-looking” models in their range. PantoGlasses is the complete conceptualization of panto. The legal immaterial rights and trademarks for Panto glasses are applied for and approved by the international trademark system.

A true panto has a very strict geometrical design of the lenses – and by that the (inner part of) the frame. It is rounded, but NOT circular. It is designed with a compass, combining 6 different radiuses. The original design, also known as A3, is totally symmetrical from the right to the left side. That means that you could swap the lens from one side of the optical frame to the other, or even flip it 180 degrees – if that was the intention. The other characteristic of true panto is the high position of hinges and temples (arms).

The 6 radiuses shaping panto create a natural frame, perfectly matching the orbital area of the human anatomy. Whether a face is rectangular, oblong, oval, have prominent features or not – a panto will probably be an interesting shape to try out. The slightly flatted area of the top of the frames naturally follows the eyebrows. Panto is a true unisex style, versatile like no other style and will look flattering on almost any type of face – due to its orbital shape.

Panto is one of the true classics in eyeglasses. There are really 3 different classic rounded symmetrical shapes of glasses:
CIRCULAR This is the shape of a perfect circle.
PANTO Rounded, but not circular. Symmetric, combining 6 radiuses, slightly flatted on top.
OVAL This is the more oblong shape, all the time oval around a horizontal axis.

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Image courtesy of Panto

The Panto Glasses are produced in three different materials:
ACETATE, a degradable organic cellulose material, is used for the production of most of the Panto models. The frames are milled out, into carefully engineered shapes and sizes. Frame and temples are polished and metal parts like hinges are mounted.
STAINLESS STEEL is used for the Panto model Oxford, the very first Panto model. The Panto glasses made decades back in time were produced with nickel alloys. While these were known to give skin allergies, the PantoGlasses Oxford are nickel free, and produced in Stainless Steel. The temples are available as normal temples as well as with curled temples. The model is available in gold and silver colour, with and without the classic brown acetate Windsor rings.
TITANIUM is used for the model Lima and Lyon. These glasses are rimless, meaning no frame around the lenses. With the fine materials, the superlight construction and the true panto shape of the lenses, these glasses appear very neutral and as next to nothing.
RL33 is the characteristic Panto shape.

An optical lens is designed by having different curves on the front and the back of the lens. A plus lens for those who are hyperopic/farsighted is thicker at the centre, and thinner at the edge. If the eyewear is big or it has some corners or designs that require a big lens to cover it, it means that the raw lens before cutting will be thick and heavy. For a small rounded panto, the opticians can choose a small lens that has a centre thickness that gives their customer light and esthetically nice glasses and lenses. Minus lenses that are used for those who are myopic/shortsighted have a thin centre thickness. The further you get from the centre, and the higher power the lens has, the thicker the lens will be. With a pair of smaller, rounded eyeglasses like panto, only the central thinner part of the raw lenses is needed. The glasses will be optimized when it comes to the weight of the spectacles and the thickness of the lenses. Panto glasses are accordingly optical and technical solutions that optimize physical and esthetical conditions by eyewear.

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Image courtesy of Panto

The name Panto relates to the optimized angle and field of vision achieved by the panto design. Related to optics, panto is short for «pantoscopic». Panto has a very special place in the history of eyeglasses.
INTRODUCTION. The origin of the Panto glasses is from the 1930s. In England, they were first known as one of the most popular spectacles used as NHS (National Health Service) eyewear from 1948, as one of their 10 styles of free eyeglasses.
MILLITARY. During WW1 and WW2 the military and the pilots found that there was nothing that could beat to panto inside pilot helmets and gas masks, due to the smaller size and close fit.
MOTORCYCLISTS. When driving a motorcycle with a full or half helmet, the panto being relatively small and still strong has been the preferred eyeglasses around the world. A slightly modified version of the standard is where the temples (rods) are straight so that the glasses can be pushed straight in from the front after the helmet is fixed, wearing panto inside (like for other masks).
THE 1960’S TO THE 1980’S. This is the period when artists, students, musicians and radicals dominated the use of panto. The shape was to a large extent associated with a free lifestyle.
From 2010 the panto has regained and developed further its immense popularity, after a few decades where the model was more or less absent in the market. From 2020 on panto was the dominating shape among designers of spectacles and their brands.

Panto is probably the world’s most popular model of glasses and among the most iconic styles in the eyewear hall of fame. This is valid for both historic perspectives and right now. Over the years, panto has been a preference among people known as creative, artists, musicians, students, as well as doctors, and lawyers. Among those who have made Panto famous are John Lennon, Harrison Ford (as Indiana Jones), Johnny Depp, Kristen Stewart, Jennifer Aniston, Eric Clapton, Woody Allen, Brad Pitt and many more. Panto is probably the model of eyewear that is worn by more people than any other with ±0,00 no-power “fashion only” lenses, to achieve the desired intellectual or fashion look.


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Image courtesy of Panto
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Image courtesy of Panto

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