Behind the door #1 - Rétine & Pupille, Paris
Discover Franck and his Rétine & Pupille store in Paris
05/26/2021 | Claire
We are convinced about how local stores can be precious but also on the importance of always being as close as possible to our customers.
The "Behind the door" project emerged through the desire to highlight our more than 2,000 partners and their stores, which allow you to try on your favorite pairs on a daily basis.
Due to which, in 2016 we naturally began a great collaboration with Franck, to introduce you to our ranges in his store, Rétine et Pupille.
He recently welcomed us to his beautiful and bright boutique in the 17th district in Paris where we took the opportunity to ask him a few questions.
Hello Franck, can you introduce yourself?
My name is Franck, I am 42 years old and have been an optician since early 2000.
When and how did you begin your adventure in the world of optics?
I started with a 2 year technical degree in Optics and then worked for a few years with other opticians, before deciding to create my own store in 2005. It has been 16 years and I am still here and I don't regret it at all.
How did you come up with the desire to have your own store?
I wanted to evolve, to change, to see something else, to choose my collections, my glasses, my glassmaker...!
Can you tell us a little more about the history of your store?
The store already existed before, I carried out some renovations and I changed the name to make it reflect my image and my idea.
Speaking of the name, how did you come up with the idea of Rétine et Pupille?
It’s a reference to a song by Alain Souchon!
Before you took over, was this already an optical store?
Yes, but a very old-fashioned one, even archaic! I wanted to modernize everything, turn it into a bright, minimalist store.
It's true that the word that best describes your store is "bright." Did it require major works?
I almost renovated everything. It lasted 5 weeks...Some may consider this period short, but for me it was long!
During COVID times, opticians are considered as essential businesses in France. Despite everything, did this context affect you?
Yes of course, even as an essential business we did work less, but other than that no, things haven’t changed much. My faithful customers keep coming and I even have new ones. Those who work in the neighborhood and who do not have time to get their classes made close to home.
According to you, what makes your boutique stand out compared to others? Your added bonus?
I am the only one working in my store, so my customers have only one contact and this allows me to get to know them all. I can really forge a genuine relationship with them.
It has been 16 years since I created my company and for 16 years now, some customers have been coming back regularly.
What really makes a difference is the proximity, a wide range of glasses, a personalized service.
Speaking of your choice of glasses, how do you choose which brands you wish to work with?
I mainly work with brands that only make glasses. No perfumes, no shoes, no bags...only glasses! My choice is of course also based on the quality, the price, the design, the materials and the solidity of the pairs.
Design seems to be a big part,in terms of your store but also the pairs you offer. Why is this so important to you?
It is important to be trendy, in keeping with what’s going on and what is appealing!
Design is the reason you initially wanted to work with Nooz?
Following the advice from a client. He had seen these and came to me and said, “That's cool, you should sell some!” This is how I got to know Nooz and in 2016, I ordered your first glasses, the binocles. Then a few years later I started with your second range, the Essential.
What is the reason that even 5 years down the road, you continue working with us?
First of all, for the good value for money. In terms of quality, that's quite impressive! Last June, I was pleasantly surprised by the sunglasses...Not many of us offered these as soon as they were released, 2 in Paris I think. I sold quite a lot! People came from everywhere, from all around Paris!
Do you have a classic type of Nooz customer?
Not at all. They appeal to everyone, the young and the elderly. For the time being, the feedback has been good, no broken glasses. They are mainly popular due to the design and their value for money.
Which Nooz pairs seem to appeal the most?
The Cruz Crystal sunglasses! Those with the blue mirrored lenses, too, are very popular.
Do you have an anecdote to share about Nooz?
One day a client came in and bought 6-7 pairs. He said: “at this price, come on!”
Personally speaking, are you more Original or Essential?
Essential! My favorite pair is the Cruz Solaire with the blue lenses. During pleasant weather, it is really practical.