Should you stock up on purple-hued eyewear?

When the Pantone Color Institute picks a color of the year, the worlds of fashion, beauty and design pay attention.

"When buying frames, you will need a little of everything—but a lot of what is best for your clientele."

Pantone chose "Radiant Orchid" as the 2014 color of the year, suggesting this purple hue will permeate men's and women's clothing and accessories throughout the year. Optometric practices with fashion-minded patients might want to stock up.

"People that keep up with trends will ask for frames in that color," says Beverly Roberts, Immediate Past Chair of the AOA's Paraoptometric Section, who has been ordering frames for the past 13 years.

Roberts says she pays attention to what color is "in" during any given year, but she also notes that popularity will vary by location. Knowing your customers' preferences is crucial.

In addition, color is not the only factor that dictates her frame orders. Roberts pays close attention to vision magazines and TV ads to follow what's popular. She also attends at least four different vision expositions each year to gain insight on trends in color, style and material.

"When buying frames, you will need a little of everything—but a lot of what is best for your clientele," Roberts says. "A good balance will keep patients coming back year after year."

February 7, 2014

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