Sustainable shades: recyclable aluminum frames from Proof

Proof SunglassesKelsey Dayton

Proof Sunglasses Eagle

When people think of Proof sunglasses, they usually think of wood.

The story goes like this: Bud Dame started a small local mill in Idaho that over the years grew to a global company. That inspired his grandson, Brooks Dame, to build a wooden ski pole. When that didn’t turn out as he hoped, he made sunglasses. He soon joined forces with his brothers, Tanner and Taylor, to create wood-frame eyewear brand Proof.

That was six years ago. Proof has since branched out to frames made of cotton-based acetate and repurposed skateboard decks – and now aluminium. The company just launched its new aluminum-frame collection on Kickstarter. The funding campaign runs through March 31 and includes four frame styles, with four to five different color options for each.

The Challis frame is the popular wayfarer shape, a best-seller in Proof’s other wood-based lines. The Sundance is an edgier, oval-shaped frame. The Eagle is a classic aviator. And the Overland provides a sleek, traditional look.

Proof Sunglasses Aluminum Collection

Each frame features spring-loaded hinges, polarized lenses, adjustable ear and nose pieces, and wood accents on the temples – a nod to Proof’s roots.

With eight days still to go, the company has already tripled its $20,000 funding goal with more that $62,000 in backing.

Tanner, who is the company's COO, said they wanted to work with metal to differentiate from other companies that have recently introduced wood-frame eyewear. They also wanted to keep innovating. Plus, their supporters like classic silhouettes like an Aviator with metal frames, Tanner added.

Proof Sunglasses Aluminum Collection

Proof's commitment to sustainability played a large role in crafting its latest collection.

“Recycled aluminum fits in with the company’s mission,” Tanner said. “It’s lightweight, malleable and recyclable. It’s a way to create a stylish look with a minimal environmental footprint.”

This isn’t Proof's first Kickstarter campaign. Tanner said the platform is great for more than just funding. It helps them reach new customers who haven't yet heard of the brand and it gives the company immediate feedback on products.

Proof Sunglasses Recyclable Aluminum Frames

“Someone who backs a product on Kickstarter, they feel like they were able to help bring that product and brand to market,” Tanner said. “They are more likely to give feedback on what they like and don’t and that feedback is instant.”

Backers also get the chance to be ahead of the curve when it comes to products and trends, and get exclusive access to the new styles and at discounted prices. Proof expects to be able to deliver the aluminium collection sunglasses to backers in April.

Check out Proof's Kickstarter campaign to learn more and become a backer.

Proof sunglassesStartup stories

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