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Homes Eyewear

Detroit, MI 48207

Achille Bianchi

Building a business isn’t someone people can do alone. Every entrepreneur needs at least a little help from their friends.

Achille Bianchi knows he is one of those businessmen. The Detroit-based entrepreneur launched Homes Eyewear out of the Motor City’s Eastern Market neighborhood. The company uses wood harvested from blighted homes that have been dismantled by Reclaim Detroit as the base for a line of wooden sunglasses. The glasses are primarily made from hardwood recycled from old houses.

At first Bianchi spent a lot of his time creating Homes Eyewear on his own. He would spend 13 to 14 hours a day holed up working on the prototypes from home and his corner at OmniCorpDetroit, a maker space in Eastern Market.

"I see my friends and they ask, 'Did you move?'" Bianchi says. "No, I'm just in the shop all day everyday."

That actually means he is spending more time with his business circles than his social circles. Bianchi has learned to lean on a growing network of local entrepreneurs, makers, and assorted professionals to refine his product and grow his business.

Businesswise there are quite a few people out there willing to lend a hand,” Bianchi says.

One of the entrepreneurs he looks up is Bethany Shorb, the founder of CyberOptix Tie Lab. The Detroit-based business makes custom ties that are unique in their own variation in color, density, and texture, with indications and remnants of the printing process on the reverse, further adding to its individual character.

CyberOptix has been around for nearly a decade and has established itself with its high-quality, handcrafted work. Bianchi likes its story so much he works to emulate practically everyday.

"It's a model I really like," Bianchi says. "She has jumped the hurdles of running a small business. She has really good insight."

OmniCorpDetroit has also turned into a go-to source for inspiration and expertise for Homes Eyewear. The maker space and the people who work there have helped Bianchi find the best tools to use to make his sunglasses, the best techniques to produce them, and the best way to grow his budding business.

"Any person at OmniCorpDetroit is a really good person to go to for advice," Bianchi says.

- Written by Jon Zemke

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