Oct 31, 2015 | By Tess

3D printed sunglasses have been growing in popularity recently, with startups such as KickFly designing them, and companies such as ITUM breaking into the market of customizable 3D printed sunglasses. Of course there has been one brand of optical and sunglasses that has pioneered the use of 3D printing in their designs and continues to be at the fore of 3D printing glasses, pq eyewear.

Ron Arad

The brand came about in 2013 when an Israeli eyewear manufacturer Assaf Raviv approached one of his favorite designers, world-renowned designer and architect Ron Arad, to ask him to create a line of 3D printed sunglasses.

Arad is known for his innovative and original works, which include furniture made from used car parts, as well as the architecture of Israel’s leading design museum. Arad has also been working with 3D printing since the late 1990s and was a pioneer in 3D printing vases, lights, as well as jewelry.

pq eyewear’s designs have been recognized and lauded by several notable figures such as Sharon Stone, Pharrell Williams, and impressively, Oprah Winfrey. pq’s 3D printed collection, called D-Frame was launched in March 2015 and is currently available online or in select European boutiques, but will soon be available on the US market as well, reportedly in March of 2016. Each pair retails for about $800.

Assaf Raviv and Oprah

In an interview, Arad explains what makes his sunglasses designs so unique: “They are different from any other shapes you’ve seen before, in terms of aesthetics and functionality…The rounded shape of the D-Frame’s collection features the spine’s morphology and flexibility on the temples, thus allowing a natural joint-like movement. There are no hinges, no pins, and they are lightweight with a total flexibility, made in one piece.”

Indeed, the glasses from the D-frame collection are made of one piece of material and are designed in such a way that even without hinges or separate arms, they can be folded up to fit in a case. The collection consists of 33 optical and sunglasses models that come in a variety of colors such as Tiffany blue, denim, cobalt, plum, asphalt, felt, and even some patterned designs such as lava and marbled.

Raviv, who sought out to work with Arad, expresses his enthusiasm about the project, “Working with Ron Arad is nothing but a real adventure. He is the most creative guy on Earth, very innovatice, restless in a good sense. I feel blessed for having the opportunity to work or even to know him.”

The collection is manufactured on UK company CRDM’s largest SLS 3D printer, the ProX 500. In an effort to protect and maintain the integrity of Arad’s designs, pq eyewear have partnered with the leading 3D printer company and are in the process of patenting their special eyewear printing technique.




Posted in 3D Printing Application



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