They had been available only through optical stores.

State Optical Co., a Chicago-based firm that prides itself on producing its frames in the U.S., has begun selling sunglasses online.

The company's products previously were available only "through a network of high-end opticians around the country," Fast Company reports. That will still be the case for prescription glasses.

In explaining the move, Scott Shapiro, founder of the company, told WWD: “Getting a retailer network who provides a highly personalized customer service experience is and was of utmost priority for us. Especially when it comes to ophthalmic eyewear, we feel the best place to buy frames is from a well-trained and professional optician. We’ve chosen this omni-channel option for our suns so that we can continue to build our brand digitally, but to be honest we consider it a branding opportunity, not a revenue-generator.”

The sunglasses will sell for $400 and up.

The company, which began selling at retail a little over a year ago, has about 50 employees.

Scott Shapiro, founder of the company, has said that most people who buy the company's frames have never before owned eyewear produced in the U.S.

State Optical's online sunwear sales were set to begin at the start of May, Fast Company reports.

Read more at Fast Company

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