Once upon a time, only the cool wore sunglasses: Bob Dylan. Steve McQueen. Rowdy Roddy Piper in . Now that even jowly housewives are rocking designer shades, it's all the more important to set yourself apart, with limited-edition eyewear from Australia's CoLab. Handcrafted by an international roster of street artists and up-and-coming designers, each Colab sunglasses model is released in a micro-batch of 1000, never to be reproduced (much like Manet's "Luncheon on the Grass", or Mr. T's "Treat Your Mother Right"). Each style represents a unique blend of classic form and jaunty detail, from the Duke's etched pinstripes, to the subtle faux nerd-tape on the bridge of the Weiner. CoLab actually urges you to consider their shades as wearable sculpture, albeit of the sort that's troublingly easy to lose in the couch cushions. Further differentiating Colabs are their removable lens decals and cotton-fibre-polymer construction -- a tough, hypoallergenic alternative to the typical nylon base, and, along with your Hanes, a fine way to appreciate the genius of Eli Whitney. As proof of limitedness, your pair will come individually numbered, comic-book-style, so if the artist who created them ever hits it big they may become a valuable collector's item -- though sadly, they still won't help you identify the aliens that are even now walking among us.
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