Made In France has always been a badge of quality but what does it really mean?
In optics there is more than a century long tradition of the Jura region in France being a world renowned hub for handmade eyewear but there is also production in a number of other areas of France, notably Normandy, Lyon and around Paris.
Kirk & Kirk frames are all crafted in one factory in France from start to finish which allows us to maintain and trace our quality.
If you are interested in finding out more about the provenance of certain frame lines, take a look at theeyewearforum.com It’s a great resource for finding out more about frames and at the moment they are running features on production from different countries, including a superb in-depth feature on Kirk & Kirk
As a British company, with a one hundred year optical heritage, we look back fondly at the era when Sidney and Percy Kirk set up optical factories in London and helped others set up workshops so that London would become a centre of optical excellence. For half a century the UK optical manufacturing industry flourished however nowadays very few frames are made here, although there are some excellent manufacturers still producing but in relatively small quantities.
There are pockets of manufacture across Europe but, like so many industries, the majority of frames are produced in Asia.
Just like in Europe, the quality of the frames varies from factory to factory and you can get great quality frames that are made in China just like you can find poor quality made in Europe.
One little tip; if your frame is marked Frame Paris or Design Milan, in fact, anything other than a very clear and distinct ‘Made In……’ then you can be certain is not manufactured in that place.
So let us say it loud and proud. All Kirk & Kirk glasses are designed in England, our acrylic is made in Italy and our frames are made, from start to finish, in France. Bonne journée.