An introduction to The Spectacle 10

By the President of the Cubitts Fan Club

It's the tenth edition of the Spectacle, in this tenth year of Cubitts, The Modern Spectacle Maker (ten syllables long).

If you’re beginning to notice a pattern emerging, you’re the sort of person who will enjoy this issue, which seeks to unravel the mysterious patterns that make up Cubitts' history. Even if you’ve been a fan since the beginning of this finely nuanced ten year arc, you might not have spotted the numerous Easter eggs planted along the way.

In the Cubitts Fan Club, we get together to discuss the deeper meanings in all these hidden messages cropping up throughout the Cuboverse.

Why did they replace Flaxman with Anson in year 9? Whatever happened to Burton, that frame that appeared in year 5 and then completely disappeared? Why is there an aquamarine acetate called ‘Lilacs’ and a lilac acetate called 'Aquamarine'?
Like the patterns in The Shining or the subliminal messages in Lost or the coded symbols in Leonardo’s paintings, the clues in Cubitts’ ten year history all lead to one thing. Not the moon landings or purgatory or Jesus, but to a single object.

The Isokon Gull, a fine example of modernist design.

The Isokon Gull

Here’s a reminder of some of the main clues that crop up on the Cubitts forums:

  • Gull - ‘A person who is easily deceived or cheated’ (i.e. us for the last ten years).
  • A PR photograph of Cubitts founder Tom Broughton with his hand suggestively on the Gull.
  • Cubitts Brighton is clearly an odd one out in the northwards trajectory of the stores. Why? An allusion to the Brighton and Hove Albion Gull, of course.
  • The Egon frame in the Hampstead Bespoke Collection, named after the Gull designer, Egon Riss.
  • Two Isokon Gulls end to end would make a Cubitts rivet. Sort of.
  • Cubitts once posted an Instagram with the caption ‘We have hidden an Isokon Gull somewhere’ (now deleted).

I put my evidence in a letter to Broughton (his address is easy to find, there’s a whole Financial Times article about it). And while he usually ignores my mail, emails, gifts, and notes-on-stones-thrown-through-a-window, on this occasion he wrote back.
So there it is. Just what the fans have been waiting for. Proof that the whole Cubitts journey up to this point has been one big treasure hunt. The Cubitts fan who can piece together the clues will win treasure beyond their wildest dreams (specifically a modernist piece of design, some very nice books, and a bespoke pair of spectacles).

This is an issue for the fans, by the fans. I’ve gathered together evidence from across the Cubitts canon, and sought help from my fellow spectacle obsessives to decode for the hidden messages and solve this puzzle.

Pick up your copy of The Spectacle 10 in a Cubitts store to join the search for the prize.

Visit a store to pick up The Spectacle.