Tony Gross, co-founder of British luxury eyewear brand Cutler and Gross, has died aged 78.
Described in the 1980s as “London’s number one eye guy” by W fashion magazine in New York, Gross was born into an observant Jewish family in London’s East End in 1939. Starting from relatively humble origins, he worked with Elton John in the 1970s, choosing glasses to match the bespectacled star's suits. Later customers included Madonna, Tina Turner, Hugh Grant, Grace Jones, Princess Diana, Sting, Bono, Rhianna, and Ava Gardner. His glasses were also worn in several films, including by Julia Roberts in Notting Hill.Gross, who was in his heyday the leading fashion optician in the UK, was childless. His nephew, political commentator and JC contributor, Tom Gross said: “He had been in a retirement home for the last few years following a stroke, but maintained his good humour and was his usual jolly self to the end.”
A family friend told the JC: “Whereas Tony’s late brother, the writer John Gross, was renowned for his literary skills – ‘Britain’s best read man’ as The Spectator called John – Tony was primarily a visual person, excelling at art and design.”