Gold & Wood Spectacles, the Green Option for Eyewear?

One area that hasn't been covered much, if at all on TreeHugger, is eyewear, although quite a few of us writers wear glasses as you can see here. We have also come across Stuart Haygarth's beautiful chandelier made from eye glass lens, but don't actually know what the ultimate green spectacles would be. If Haygarth doesn't turn them into chandeliers, and we're not donating them to people in developing countries- where do spectacles go at the end of their lives?

Last year, we got excited about "wooden" sunglasses no.0085 (they don't seem to have a name) by Diesel, only to find out that they were made from wood imitating plastic. Since then we have been wondering about spectacles made from wood and recently came across some gorgeous ones by Gold & Wood, Paris. Their model Star is entirely created in wood; ebony Macasar wood for a very dark veined black emphasis, iroko wood for a more shimmering effect. Stunned by the luxurious finish of the wood, we dug deeper to find out how sustainable the product really is. Sure enough, we found out that they use precious and exotic woods, taken from authorised and supervised plantations from different African countries, Brazil and Canada. Other models are made from genuine buffalo horn, a by-product from cattle farming. The animal is not hurt in the operation, and the horns can regrow. Surprisingly, Gold & Wood glasses are being hand-made in Luxembourg. With almost 20 production steps, the manufacturing process is quite labour intensive, which might explain their prices. The frames result from a multi-layered wood lamination process, combining 8 sheets of wood and 7 sheets of natural hypoallergenic resin. The finished product has a very pleasant satin feel to it and is almost 100% biodegradable.

It is intriguing to note that Gold & Wood don't mention sustainability in their marketing. Their phrase goes more like this: 'In a very subtle and very real colored style, or in a more timeless purer style, the frames of the Gold & Wood optical collection will seduce distinguished men and women of the world, and all those who know about refined and noble materials and appreciate comfort'. With Model Star costing around 600€, no wonder their keyword are ultimate luxury, comfort, pleasure and perfection. In their list of people who wear them (!) we found Steven Spielberg, Jennifer Lopez and the Sultan of Brunei.

It would be interesting to do a Life Cycle Analysis (LCA) to measure what material has the lowest environmental impact when it comes to making glasses out of it. We guess frameless glasses might be the winners, or contact lenses? Via: Bassol ::Gold & Wood

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