After innovating with its carbon frames, an Italian eyewear manufacturer, Custom 6, has come up with frames made of linen fabric, which won it a Silmo d'Or award for technological innovation in frames through its international sales agent, Di Esse.
A natural, transparent polymer is used to stick the strips of linen together, with the fabric placed lengthways. The precise process remains a trade secret. The linen must have been produced without fertilizers or herbicides, to eliminate the risk of mold forming on the frame, during or after production. Suitable, organically produced linen is produced in Europe, between the North of France and Amsterdam, where the climate is conducive to its production.
The process gives the linen the required resistance, and the necessary balance between flexibility and rigidity. The end product can be produced in any color, with decorative motifs including photos printed onto the fabric.
The frames are molded by hand, at a rate of 400 per day. Distributed worldwide by Di Esse, these linen glasses will retail at a maximum of €250 a pair. The carbon frames launched by the company last year – also produced by hand, to order – now feature in a number of collections, and Silvio Da Pra, chief executive of Custom 6, is expecting them to generate sales of €5 million in 2013.