Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Leather Frames

Seems like a lot of companies are making frames out of leather. Aside from the quality of the leather, which can vary quite a bit, let me educate you on how the applications work. But how can you tell a good frame from a cheap one? How do you know that the leather isn't going to rip and scratch? Can you be sure that when you sweat that leather isn't going to peel off? Will it being on tight, stop it from peeling? Which process is the best quality?

There are 3 ways that are the most popular when it comes to putting leather on a frame

1. Stitched
Stitched leather can be identified by the actual stitches. Usually it will be wrapped around another material and bunched up at the top and have visible stitches.

-Styling with visible stitches
-Generally sturdy in terms of peeling off

-It is difficult to put it all the way back to the temple tips, usually it will only wrap around the middle of the temples.
-on a thinner frame it will look bulky to have heavy stitching
-sturdy, but the stitches can still tear/rip

2. Laminated
Laminated leather is usually wrapped around a plastic frame. They will put it on tight and glue it on. They will then press it and hold it on.

-Great styling, without exposed frayed ends
-Thinner leather is wrapped around
-The edges are also invisible because they are glued together
-Inexpensive to process which means lower retail prices

-Weight, generally it will be on top of a plastic frame with metal core
-With heavy perspiration it is peel off

3. Stamped
Stamped leather is a very costly and complex process. The part of the frame with leather will only have a thin metal core and the leather is processed and stamped directly onto the frame. There are no ends to the leather. It is basically like plastic being one piece of stiff leather.

-Lighter than other options because it contains less heavy parts (i.e. plastic cores, thickness of the frame)
-Nothing will peel off because it is one solid stiff piece of leather pressed onto the metal core
-Abosolutely no frayed edges of any sort because it is a solid piece as opposed to being on top of something
-Will not fall apart from perspiration

-Costly to produce which translates to costly retail prices
-Sometimes, can be overlooked as not being leather because of it's processing

CC's opinion: In terms of style, stitched will be the most apparent and unique, but has it's cons. Laminated is good as well, but tends to peel off when exposed to perspiration.

In my opnion, the best quality of leather will be the stamped. It's only downfall would have to be the manufacturing costs. This process puts out the best quality of product.

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