No matter who wins this week’s vice presidential debate—much less the Nov. 4 election—one person is sure to have come out ahead in 2008: Kazuo Kawasaki. The Japanese designer’s rimless titanium eyeglass frames have gone from obscurity to scarcity since Sarah Palin emerged on the scene, wearing the glasses so consistently that they seemed soldered to her head. According to The New York Times, all 1,000 authorized Kawasaki retailers have ramped up their orders, and other retailers are begging to get in on the action. Of course, there are plenty of knockoffs, if you don’t want to shell out the $700 for an authentic pair. While there’s no doubt that the last months have been good for Kawasaki, you have to wonder about the long term. Will Palin make a permanent mark on American style, à la John F. Kennedy, or will her look be remembered as little more than the Halloween cliché of 2008?
—Posted by David Griner