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02 Moving to Kyiv

This is a story about the desire to become better and the fact that all roads lead to Kyiv.
 
When the Soviet Union collapsed, everything seemed to change: it was as if the world suddenly got more colorful, interesting and ready to be explored. People got a new taste of freedom and wanted to make the most out of it, even though the economy and political system were still unstable. 

At that time, the Ukrainian market became flooded with imported Chinese glasses — new, fashionable, with cool frames and modern designs. The glasses from the Izum plant, where the future parents of Ochis owner were working, simply could not compete with those (here the collection was only updated once every 10 years). There was no creative outlet for young and inspired people, and therefore Olya and Kolya were at a crossroads. On one road stood a beloved, but outdated optical-mechanical plant. 

The other road promised changes and a new life, and, as you might’ve guessed, it led to the capital — a place of many opportunities. The choice was obvious!

Green Kyiv Dnipro River

Author: Virtual Kyiv Map
 
At first, Kolya took time off from work at the IOMZ and went to Kyiv to sell glasses on the weekend. To interest buyers with something unusual, he took defective frames from the plant, repainted and repaired them, thus created something completely new. Over the weekend, a small batch of custom glasses brought as much profit as a two-week salary. This just proved that there was a real demand for unique products, and Kolya was there to meet it.

After a couple of years of commuting, the whole family was finally able to move to the capital. When they settled in Kyiv, Max's parents began selling glasses from a small suitcase on Borshchahivka, but it soon became obvious that all cool things were happening downtown.

That’s when Kolya single-handedly made a new device  — a trolley that turned into a table, a kind of an optical shop on wheels. Together with this invention, they got to the Sinnyi market in the very heart of the city, where life was vibrant and the spirit of entrepreneurship was in full swing. It was here that Kolya gained his fame as an eyewear master, and Max sold his first pair of glasses. But let’s not get ahead of ourselves. We will tell you all about these significant for Ochis events a bit later.

Sennoy Market Kyiv

Author is unknown.

To find out what happened next, stay tuned and check our stories section.


 

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