Lurex® is first and foremost a registered trademark for metallic yarns owned by the Franco-British group Sildorex-Lurex® since 1970. It is derived from the English word "to lure".
Lurex® thread is made of a polyester film covered with a metallic layer, usually aluminium, which gives it its shine and brilliance. More rarely, because it is more expensive, it is coated with silver or gold. There is a wide range of Lurex® yarns. For more information, please visit www.lurex.com


Since ancient times, gold and silver threads have been used in the manufacture of fabrics and were often associated with luxury and prestige in many civilisations (the Pharaohs of Egypt, the emperors of China, the kings of Europe…). The first Lurex® metallic thread was invented in 1946 in the United States. It completely revolutionised the concept of metallic threads by developing a new technology based on vacuum metallisation. This makes it possible to vaporise metal particles such as aluminium, pure silver or even pure gold and deposit them onto different types of support. This new process makes it possible to radically change the use of metallic threads : it not only brings a multitude of technical advantages (greater lightness and flexibility of the threads) but it also allows, due to its lower price than that of traditional metal threads, more economical access to its use in the textile world. Combined with the liberation of the feminine silhouette, Lurex® thread became an inexhaustible source of inspiration for the great designers of the post-war period (Dior, Yves St Laurent, Balenciaga, Courreges, Givenchy...). Bringing the brilliance of its threads to the finest creations of haute couture, Lurex® continues to innovate today and combine with the finest fibres and materials to become a symbol of brilliance. It continues to be an inexhaustible source of inspiration for contemporary and established designers, including Alexander McQueen, Tony Ward, Jacquemus, Jean Paul Gauthier, Karl Lagerfeld.


Here the 5 steps to produce Lurex® :
1. METALLISATION : The principle of vacuum metallization is to pass a plastic or cellulose film into a vacuum chamber. This film is placed on uncoiling cylinders inside the closed metallisation chamber in order to obtain vacuum conditions (99.9999% of the air is rejected). The film passes over a cooling cylinder while vaporised aluminium at a temperature of 1500 °C is condensed onto the film as it passes over the cooling cylinder. The aluminium layer deposited on the film corresponds to approximately 300-500 Angstroms (i.e., 1/250 of the thickness of an aluminium foil). To give you an idea of the performance, 1kg of aluminium would be enough to cover two football fields after metallisation! Once the metallisation process is completed, the vacuum conditions are evacuated, the chamber open and the metallised film recovered.
2. COATING : After metallisation, the film passes through an on-line coating process which will, depending on the needs, provide the colours and technical characteristics of the yarn (resistance to dyes, for example). It is at this stage that the different effects are given to the thread, such as a high gloss or a matt appearance. During this step, the film can also be laminated with another film for specific applications.
3. SLITTING AND WINDING ONTO SUPPORTS : This step involves slitting the Lurex® metallised film with a high precision cutting system. It can be slit up to 0.10 mm wide. At this stage, the yarn is labelled “slit” (flat aspect) or “unsupported”. It is then presented on reels or bicones.
4. ASSEMBLY : Unreinforced Lurex® is sold for certain applications, such as weaving or spinning. But it can also be reinforced with other fibres, such as polyamide, polyester, viscose or cotton. The thread is then called "supported" and is used most often for knitting, weaving, lace or embroidery.
5. QUALITY CONTROL : Throughout the production process, the thread is checked and tested to ensure maximum quality. The last check is done in Lurex® quality laboratories in England before shipment.


The Lurex® brand has been innovating since its creation. Many technological advances have improved the flexibility of Lurex® threads through the use of increasingly fine films and textured threads. This made it possible to offer a range of soft contact threads used for lingerie, tights, and more.


Lurex® thread is used in many sectors of the textile industry, such as:
Circular and flat knitting
Embroidery and sewing


In 2017, the Sildorex-Lurex® group launched its own brand of ready-to-wear and fashion accessories as a tribute to the creativity of its customers. A first flagship store was opened in October 2017 in Paris at 51, rue des Francs Bourgeois.


Références : 
Alessandra Geromel Pauletti, Oro Filato, Il romanzo dei fili metallici preziosi dalle origini ad oggi, Italy.

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