Minnesota-born Coco and Breezy’s sunglasses are sold internationally.


C.J.: Sunglasses creators can make it anywhere but Minnesota

  • Article by: C.J.
  • Star Tribune
  • July 21, 2014 - 8:08 PM

Sunglasses entrepreneurs Coco & Breezy hang with Beyoncé, Prince and Tommy Hilfiger but can’t get their products in any Minnesota boutiques. Really?

Mixing business with family, the Minnesota-born twins popped into town last week to surprise their mother, Diana Aponte. Saturday they had a photo shoot in a Minneapolis space for some of their latest creations. Things are going well for the Apple Valley transplants, who moved to NYC in 2009 at 19 years of age with less than $1,000 between them and no place to stay.

So how many Twin Cities area stores are carrying their products?

“Zero,” said Coco. “They don’t believe in us? Joking.”

She laughed.

One look at and it’s easy to see why the twins can laugh off a hometown slight. They’re not suffering a shortage of media coverage or sales from what I can see.

“I don’t know if our glasses are too wild or not,” said Coco. “We’ve reached out to a few stores here.”

“And they didn’t reach back out to us,” said Breezy.

But Coco & Breezy are doing fine in NYC. For example: Milly in NYC only carries Coco & Breezy’s sunglasses, and their reach far exceeds New York.

“Greece,” said Coco.

“Australia, Paris, Japan, Portugal. We’re in over 20 countries. I could keep going,” said Breezy. “L.A.”

They told me Prince invited them to the Essence Music Festival this month.

“We danced on stage with Prince in front of about 35,000 people. It was crazy,” said Coco. “We used to dance; it used to be our passion. Prince is so inspiring. When we first met him in New Orleans, after we showed him our dances, he’s like,You guys are going to make us famous.’ ”

“And we’re like, ‘No, Prince,’ ” they said to me in unison. “I think it’s the other way around,” Coco said to Prince.

The Twins, whom Vogue Italy has described as “fashion icons,” appeared in Beyoncé’s “Party” video in 2011.

A couple of months ago, Beyoncé rented out a New York Dave and Buster’s and the twins were invited.

“We were there. Drake was there, J Cole. We were at Dave and Buster’s playing games …” said Coco.

“ … like big kids, playing games,” added Breezy. “I was like, we’re hanging with Beyoncé. She remembered us. [She’s] so sweet and humble.”

“She’s so like a Southern Belle,” Coco said.


Is Ashley Brown Mrs. AP?

There has been no big announcement of a marriage on Twitter’s @adrianpeterson account. The online version of the Vikings media guide has not been updated.

But word has it that Adrian Peterson has been walking around town introducing as “my wife” his girlfriend, Ashley Brown, who has also been identified by some as his fiancée. And Peterson is said to be wearing a new ring on the finger in question.

I’ve been bugging Peterson for confirmation on Twitter and have not yet received what would be my first tweet from him. Want to make sure there was a legal event and not a commitment ceremony.


Love and LeBron: power play?

Has Kevin Love been traded by the Timberwolves yet?

If he goes to the Cavs, as many sports guys believe will happen, Love’ll be playing with the most powerful player in the NBA, LeBron James. But this might not be the best power move, Israel Gutierrez said on ESPN’s “Sports Reporters”: “This was a calculated power move very few in sports have the influence to execute. LeBron’s going back to Cleveland on his terms and his choice would seemingly be to team with All-Star Kevin Love, not a 19-year-old prospect [rookie forward Andrew Wiggins],” Gutierrez said.

But what if Wiggins turns out to be a player with whom James could win now and years from now? asked Gutierrez. “See, power’s kind of scary sometimes.”

The power move I want to see James make in Ohio includes bringing good-paying, long-term jobs like those that might be found at a Beats factory. Not more sellers of concessions.


C.J. can be reached at and seen on Fox 9’s “Buzz.” E-mailers, please state a subject; “Hello” does not count. Attachments are not opened.


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