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Brand spotlight | Puccini

If you appreciate comfort, style and attention to detail, then look no further than Puccini eyewear.  

The brand recognises that glasses can be a key part of your look, and strives to provide a versatile range that will allow you to celebrate your own unique personality. 

With Puccini frames you can be confident that alongside quality and comfort you will also be choosing frames with plenty of intricate detail setting them apart from the rest. 

Embossed hinges, interesting side designs and the odd touch of sparkle take these frames to a whole other level. 

As the brand explains: “What is special about us is our devotion to the quality and style. It makes us proud to see our collection on the faces of beautiful people who value their comfort and appearance.” 

Read on to find out more about some of our favourite Puccini frames currently in stock at Patrick & Menzies. 


PUCCINI – 274 – C1

PUCCINI - 274 - C1 11These may appear to be simple silver frames on first glance, but if you take a closer look, you will find they offer a variety of beautiful design details. The sides bring a flash of teal and an intricate swirl design, while the embossed hinge is the perfect final touch.   

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PUCCINI – 135 – Purple

PUCCINI - 135 - 1If you want to accentuate your eyes, these frames are a great option. The fine mixed tone stripe around the edge of the lenses draws attention to the eyes and sits well alongside the detailed metal sides. 

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PUCCINI – 233T – C2

PUCCINI - 233T - C2 1Check out this pair of metal Puccini frames, Perfect for people who like understated chic. They feature a touch of sparkle tucked away along the sides bringing simple elegance to these classic frames. 

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PUCCINI – 78 – Purple

PUCCINI - 78 - 1There is so much detail in this pair of specs, that it’s hard to know where to begin! Acetate and metal are combined to great effect, with a tear drop design on the hinge adding interest. The mix of purple, black and gold work wonderfully to create a stunning set of frames. 

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PUCCINI - 292 - C2 11The timeless design of these metal frames is elevated to another level by the detailed cut out pattern along the sides.  

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You can browse our extensive range of frames online from the comfort of your home. Select the pair – or pairs – you like and click on the heart button to add them to your list of favourites. 

When you are done, click on the ‘view/send favourites’ button, complete your details and we will do our best to have them ready for you to try on when you come in for your appointment.  If we don’t have the exact pair in stock, we will help you find something similar among our great selection of frames.

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Finding frames to suit your hair colour

Ever wondered why some pairs of glasses just instantly look right when you try them on while others somehow jar? 

Much of the time this is to do with how the frames fit with your colouring. Hair shade, skin tone and even eye colour can play a part in finding the eyewear which truly suits you. 

To help make choosing the right frames a little easier, we have taken a look at the kinds of frames which go best with different hair colours.  

Blonde hair 

Your shade of blonde will have an impact on which colours suit you best. As a rule, chunky dark frames don’t work so well, while greys, tortoiseshell and pastel shades look fantastic on platinum blondes. If you have honey blonde hair, make warmer tones your starting point. Think golds, coppers, reds and khakis. 

Brown hair 

If you have dark brown hair skip heavier darker frames, and instead contrast with your colouring by opting for silvers, greens and golds. For light brown hair it’s hard to go wrong with the classic tortoiseshell frame. Rich browns and reds will complement your colouring too, along with golds and coppers. 

Red hair 

If you are a redhead, it’s important to choose frames that will complement the warmth of your hair tone. Pastel frames or anything that has yellow tone are a no no. Instead, bold solid colours will look great alongside warm neutral shades, golds and coppers. 

Black hair 

Dark tortoiseshell and black frames look superb alongside black hair, but if you dare to be bold, bright blues and reds can create a striking contrast. Metal frames can look great too, though avoid pastel tones which can look dull in comparison. 

Grey hair 

It’s hard to go wrong when pairing glasses with grey hair. Be bold and opt for rich solid colours (think amber, mustard, red or navy), thick rims, or any metallic frames.  

Alongside finding the right frames for your colouring, your face shape can have an impact on whether your specs look great or just don’t go. Read our recent blog to find out more about how to select the right frames to suit the shape of your face


Browse our extensive range of frames online.  Just select the pair – or pairs – you like, and with the click of a button we can have them ready for you to try on when you come in for your appointment.


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Winter Eyecare

The winter months can pose a few challenges for your eye health. Thankfully there are some very simple things you can do to take better care of your eyes during this season. 

Sunglasses aren’t just for summer 

Glare can be a real issue during the winter, whether it is caused by bright sunshine reflecting off snow, puddles or heavy frost or the dazzle of the low sun on a winter afternoon.  

Sunglasses are the perfect way to reduce this glare, but they also have other year-round benefits. They provide protection against UV rays which, over the years, can cause significant damage to your eyes, while also protecting the skin around the eye, reducing the risk of skin cancer. 

And on bright winter days, sunglasses can help reduce eyestrain and headaches, too.  

Winter sun can be very low and very bright and can often cause real problems when driving. If you are struggling with this debilitating glare, it’s really important to choose the right pair of sunglasses. Make sure you get the right colour and depth of tint – polarised lenses can be really helpful. Also make sure the frame doesn’t obscure your vision.   

And if you take part in winter sports such as skiing then choosing the right eyewear is vital. 

Patrick & Menzies Partner and Dispensing Optician Dan Edwards, explained: “A much larger amount of ultra violet is reflected off snow than off concrete or grass for example. So, if you do take part in winter sports, we can help you select the right eyewear to protect your eyes.” 

Find out more about choosing the right pair of sunglasses here. 


Be dry eye aware 

Dry Eye is a common problem during the winter months, though it can occur all year round, especially if there is an underlying condition. 

Dan explained: “During the colder months people are likely to have the central heating on at home and the hot air blowers on in the car, both of which dry out the air. On top of that typically, we spend more time indoors during the winter, and possibly more time looking at electronic devices. All of these things have a knock-on effect for our eye health, potentially leading to Dry Eye symptoms.” 

Depending on how severely you are suffering, the most common symptoms are uncomfortable eyes which can look red and feel sore. 

Dan continued: “The best way to combat Dry Eye is to make the most of the tears your body can produce itself. Keep your eyelids clear and clean and use a hot compress to make sure the ducts and glands that secrete tears are clear and clean, too. If this doesn’t help you can consider using artificial tear drops which you can get from the optician or pharmacist. 

“If you are suffering from Dry Eye, please do give us a call so we can work out the best course of action. We can either arrange for you to see an optometrist or, if the symptoms are mild, then we can advise which products may help make your eyes feel more comfortable.”  

Want to find out more about Dry Eye? Check out our Dry Eyes blog.

Take a screen break 

With wintery weather leading to more time spent indoors there is a temptation to turn to electronic devices for entertainment.  

If you do find yourself looking at a screen for a long period of time, make sure you take regular breaks. The suggested guidance is to make sure every 20 minutes you look at something at least 20 feet away for 20 seconds. 

Dan added: “If you are finding it uncomfortable looking at the screen for long periods, and other problems such as any blur or dry eye have been addressed, then it can help to check the colour balance, brightness and contrast. A lot of people just put up with the factory settings when it comes to their screen, but altering the settings can make it more comfortable for your eyes, obviously so long as it suits what you are using the screen for. For example, changing the background colour so you aren’t typing black on white can reduce the contrast and really help.” 

As with any time of the year, if you notice a change in your vision or are concerned about your eye health, please do get in touch to book an appointment, rather than wait for your next regular check-up. 

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Brand spotlight – Maui Jim

Maui Jim sunglasses are a style statement in their own right. 

A cool colour palette and striking design make for frames that are way more than just a summer accessory. 

The company started out in 1980 selling just seven different styles of sunglasses on Ka’anapali beach in Lahaina, Maui. Since then, the collection has grown and evolved to include more than 125 styles which are polarized and are designed to protect from 100% of UVA and UVB rays. 

UV protection is just one of the benefits sunglasses can offer your eyes all year round, not only in the summer months. Check out some of the other real benefits sunglasses such as Maui Jim can offer your eye health in our recent blog  about the benefits of sunglasses.

What we love about the Maui Jim range is the diversity of design. Here are our top five picks from the range currently in stock as Patrick & Menzies. 


These chunky acetate frames in a warm, neutral tone are shaped to perfection. They are much more than just your average pair of round-lensed sunglasses and would look great all year round. 

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MAUI JIM - EBBFLOW 542 - 07M Thin metal frames showcase the tinted lenses to perfection, with the colouring making us dream of sunset cocktails on Hawaiian beaches. We love the simple, yet classic design which would see you through more than just one season.  

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MAUI JIM - HO'OKIPA 407 - 11 3The vivid ocean-blue lenses are the pièce de résistance of these sunglasses. The barely-there streamlined frames allow for the striking blue to be the centre of attention creating an eye-catching result. 

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MAUI JIM - KOKI BEACH 433 - R433-28T These dark acetate frames with a subtle purple fleck ooze sophistication. The larger lenses are shaped to help reduce glare making them a great option if you are choosing sunglasses to wear while driving. 

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MAUI JIM - OLU OLU 537 - 01F 4These beautifully shaped cat-eye sunglasses conjure up images of style icons Brigitte Bardot, Audrey Hepburn and Marilyn Monroe. The colour fade on the front of the frames adds further interest to what is already a pretty perfect pair of specs. Once you have these sunglasses all you need is a convertible, a headscarf and a sunny day and you will be channelling your inner 50s movie star in no time! 

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Check out the range of Maui Jim sunglasses in stock at the moment at Patrick & Menzies from the comfort of your own home

Need help choosing the right pair of sunglasses for you? Check out our recent blog ‘Why are sunglasses important?’

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Make eyecare your New Year’s resolution

The start of a new year is a great time to think about how you can make changes that will improve your life. So, if you are thinking about the sort of resolution to make for 2022, then we recommend taking the time to focus on your eye health and really make a positive difference. 

Here are some suggestions for eye-related resolutions for the coming year. 

Keep your eyes in check 

Having a regular eye test – usually every couple of years for most adults – is an important part of keeping your vision in check. So, if you are due a check-up please do get in touch to book your next appointment.  

It is definitely worth considering our enhanced examination which allows us to carry out a more in-depth examination with a full explanation when it comes to any issues. 

If you aren’t yet due your usual eye test but spot a significant change to your sight or you are worried about your vision, please do book in as soon as possible rather than wait for your next appointment. Find out more about some common tell-tale signs that you need your eyes checked in our recent blog about Extended Eye Tests.

Give your eyes a rest 

If you are a regular screen user, then the easiest eye-related resolution that will make a real difference is to remember to give your eyes a break. As a rule, every 20 minutes look at something at least 20 feet away for 20 seconds. And don’t forget to blink! Research has shown that screen users tend to blink less which can lead to dry and itchy eyes. For more tips on how to look after your eyes while working from home, check out our recent blog: Tell-tale that signs you need your eyes checked.

Stop losing your glasses! 

There’s nothing more annoying than not being able to find your glasses when you need them. But as most part time specs wearers will have found over time, it is oh-so easy to forget where you have left them! If your resolution is to stop losing your glasses check out our recent blog for some helpful hints.  Or if this feels like a bit of a stretch, why not resolve to invest in a spare pair and increase your chances of being able to find at least one set of specs! If you would like a straight duplicate of a recent order, or if you would like a new style and your prescription is up to date, call us to arrange a dispensing appointment. 

Look after your specs 

If you are a glasses-wearer why not resolve to show a little love to your specs this year? Once you have invested in the perfect pair it doesn’t take a lot to keep them in mint condition. Check out our recent blog for some hints and tips on glasses care


Why not make it your resolution to invest in a good pair of sunglasses, and wear them throughout the year, not just in summer? There are all–year-round benefits to wearing sunglasses which will help to keep your vision at optimal level. Wearing sunglasses helps protect your eyes against the sun’s Ultra-Violet rays which are present all year round. Just like skin your eyes are sensitive to UV rays and it is possible for them to be damaged by the sun. Find out more in our recent blog, benefits of sunglasses.  Plus, you can check out our wide range on sunglasses online. 


  • Please note, this year we will be closed between Christmas and New Year, giving our team a well-earned break after what has been an extremely challenging 22 months. We will be here right up to 1pm on Christmas Eve, reopening at 9am on Tuesday 4 January. 


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It’s all in the detail with this beautiful eyewear

At Patrick & Menzies we love sourcing a wide variety of frames so that our patients have the scope to choose just the right pair for them. 

From metal rims to bold, bright acetate frames, there are plenty of options to consider next time you are in the market for a new set of specs. 

And if you have the time to take a closer look, you will find many of the frames we stock include intricate features which really set them apart from the crowd. 

Here are some of our favourite specs where the added detail should not be missed. 

Jacques-Lamont 1282

It’s all in the detail with this beautiful eyewear News

If the rich violet and mottled black of these frames wasn’t enough to convince you that these are a must when it comes to stylish specs, then the touch of sparkle on the hinge sure will be. This cuff of tiny metal studs sits beautifully alongside the acetate frame. 

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Puccini 294

It’s all in the detail with this beautiful eyewear News 3From tiny crystals to embossed metal designs, the Puccini brand is known for its attention to detail, particularly when it comes to the area around the hinge. Here, the design detail along the side adds another dimension to these already pretty perfect frames. Teal really is the colour of the moment, and it looks fantastic here set alongside the black of the frame.

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Tiffany 2074 

It’s all in the detail with this beautiful eyewear News 5Even just the name of the Tiffany brand conjures up images of elegance, and the eyewear range certainly doesn’t disappoint. These beautiful frames feature the blue tone synonymous with the brand and this is set off perfectly by the crystal flower detail on the hinge. 

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ZIPS 4498T

It’s all in the detail with this beautiful eyewear News 7Classic metal frames are taken to another level with the diamond shaped design on the sides of these specs. Positioned close to the hinge, the sparkle is set off perfectly by the rose gold colouring of the frames. 

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Zoffani 3113

It’s all in the detail with this beautiful eyewear News 8Face on these frames from Zoffani are a fantastic modern take on the ever-popular tortoise shell, with a mix of neutral tones forming an almost striped pattern. Turn to the sides though and they take on a much more glam appearance. A panel of sparkle is sandwiched between rose gold detail to create a pair of glasses with real character. 

Learn more >


Did you know you can browse the range of glasses frames on offer from Patrick & Menzies from the comfort of your home?
Take a look on our frames page. 


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Christmas at Patrick and Menzies

This year we will be closed between Christmas and New Year, giving our team a well earned break after what has been an extremely challenging 22 months.

We will be here right up to 1pm on Christmas Eve, reopening at 9am on Tuesday 4 January for the start of the new year.

We would like to wish all of our customers a very Merry Christmas, and Happy New Year. Our deepest thanks for your ongoing support during 2021.

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Brand Spotlight | Cameo

Whether you need to wear your glasses all day or just for certain tasks, picking the right frames for you is a really important choice.  

After all, they make up a central part of your look and investing in the right pair – or pairs – make wearing glasses a pleasure not a chore. 

So, when you come across a brand like Cameo, you can breathe a sigh of relief. 

This highly versatile range boasts something for everyone – metal frames, plastic frames, trendy frames, classic frames – you name it, this collection has it all! 

We’ve had a browse among the shelves at Patrick & Menzies and picked our five favourite pairs of Cameo glasses which help to illustrate just how much choice is on offer from this quality brand. Read on to find out more. 



CAMEO - BRADLEY - TORTOISHELL Firey flecks really make these tortoise shell frames pop. Tortoise shell is a great option for frames as it suits both men and women and most skin tones. And it is neutral enough to fit with everyday life. 

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CAMEO - CAROL - NAVY 2Metal frames don’t need to be dull as this pair of navy specs prove. We love the matt finish and the deep blue which is bang on trend at the moment. The change in colouring along the sides adds further interest. 

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CAMEO - ELIZABETH - BROWN 4Look closely and you will see that the brown hued pattern on these Cameo specs is actually an autumn leaf design. With the pattern only featuring on the outer edge of the lens, the design really helps to accentuate the eyes. 

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In soothing neutral tones, these super thin acetate frames with stripe detail towards the bottom of the lens would look great with warm skin tones or if you have blue eyes. 

Find out more >




If you prefer the look of a larger lens, these metal frames are a great option with the plum colouring adding extra interest.  

Find out more >



Did you know you can browse our extensive range of frames online? Once you have selected the pair – or pairs – you like, just click on the heart button to add them to your list of favourites. Then simply click on the view/send favourites button and fill in your details and we can have them ready for you to try on when you come in for your appointment

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Partner looks back at P&M success as he heads into retirement

The team at Patrick & Menzies has waved a fond farewell to Andrew Patrick who has retired more than 30 years after he co-founded the business.  

Andrew and his business partner Gill Menzies opened the first branch of Patrick & Menzies in Braintree in 1988. They wanted to create an independent optician that put the customer first, and they soon began to see this vision flourish.  

Before striking out alone, Andrew had worked for an independent optician which was then taken over by a national chain. He had become frustrated with the limitations this brought, such as only sourcing items from specific suppliers, even if it meant not being able to meet the needs of the patient.  

Gill had a similar experience and so together they decided to set up an independent optician that did things differently to the rest.  

Not long after Braintree opened two further branches were unveiled in Brightlingsea and Mersea, with the team enjoying being at the heart of the community in these small market town locations.  

Andrew said: “We have lots of patients who have been with us since day one, some who we first saw as children who now come in with their own children, which is wonderful. 

“Over the years we have been very lucky to have so many fantastic people working with us, many have been with us more than 20 years. We are fiercely independent, and proud to offer something different than the large chains.” 

Andrew decided to take retirement to spend more time with his family, in particular his young grandchildren. He is also looking forward to playing some golf and taking part in volunteer work in the great outdoors.  

All that will have to wait a while though as on the day of his retirement Andrew injured his back and is now slowly recovering.  

 One of the things he is looking forward to once he is back on his feet is visiting the newest Patrick & Menzies branch in Manningtree, which opened in September.  

“Manningtree is a great location and will fit well with our other branches. Dan and the team have worked really hard to get it up and running and I’m sure it will be a great success,” Andrew added.  

Over the years Andrew has worked across the Patrick & Menzies branches, but will be a more familiar face to patients who visited the Braintree practice where he spent much of his time.  

“My proudest achievement is helping to create a team of people who enjoy what they are doing, and are brilliant at what they do,” he added. “I will really miss working with them all.” 

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Real benefits of extended eye tests

At Patrick & Menzies we believe in giving our patients all the time they need for a comprehensive eye examination. 

That’s one of the reasons why our eye examinations are longer than most. 

We know that when it comes to eyes, absolutely everyone is different. If you have a concern about your vision you need to feel confident that your optician has been able to fully understand and explore the issue before setting out what can be done to help. 

Patrick & Menzies’ Dan Edwards explained: “With the NHS eye test the basic requirements are to check the person’s prescription and the health of their eyes, detect any problems and refer them on if necessary.

“With our enhanced examination we are able to give each patient more time, allowing us to carry out a more in-depth test and offer a full explanation when it comes to any issues.” 

You can also talk to us about how to look after your eyes when it comes to your sports, hobbies or lifestyle changes such as if you have started working from home. 

As part of our gold standard test, you will also receive an Optical Coherence Tomography (OCT) scan which gives much greater insight into the health of your eyes. 

Similar to a CT scan, the OCT scan takes a 3D image, in this case of the back of the eye. 

Dan explained: “This allows us to see the layers of the retina underneath the surface layer that you cannot see in a normal eye test or with normal eye photography. 

“One of the real benefits is that this helps us to detect diseases such as Glaucoma, Diabetes and Macular Degeneration and other areas of concern much earlier than we would otherwise. 

“OCT is particularly good for monitoring the area where the optical nerve joins the retina at the back of the eye. It helps us to detect subtle changes that are much easier to see with a 3D scan than on a photograph.” 

The OCT scan is carried out during the appointment and the optometrist will then spend time explaining any issues that have been identified and what can be done to help.  

Dan continued: “People are infinitely variable and so we tailor our service to meet their needs. Our extended examination is about much more than whether you can read the letters on the test chart.  

“We really listen to our customers about any problems they are experiencing with their eyes or vision and try to get to the bottom of it. By paying for an enhanced examination, you are getting the best test available.”

A comprehensive eye examination at Patrick & Menzies costs £67.50 for over 40’s and £39.50 for under 40’s. If you are eligible for an NHS eye test you can upgrade to our extended test for £45. For more information or to book an appointment contact us today.

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