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Springs 3D-printed glasses by Ron Arad for pq

Milan 2013: London designer Ron Arad has created a range of 3D-printed spectacles and sunglasses for eyewear brand pq.

Speaking to Dezeen yesterday at the launch in Milan, Ron Arad explained: "The brand wanted to advertise the fact that it's printed but I said let's not go on about it. But it's printed. It's the first pair of glasses that I know about that is one piece of material; it's monolithic. It's polyamide."

The frames are built entirely from nylon powder using selective laser sintering (SLS) technology, with hinges made by scores in the material rather than from additional metal parts. "It has a stem that's flexible one way and stops the other," said Arad.

Springs 3D-printed glasses by Ron Arad for pq

Above: Archway style from the Springs collection
Top: Angel style from the Springs collection

Each style is name after a station on the London Underground's Northern line, including Old Street, Kentish Town and Golders Green. The Angel shades have droplet-shaped lenses, the Colindale models come with round lenses and the Highgate and Archway designs both feature an exaggerated bridge.

All frames are available in a selection of colours and the sunglasses some with tinted lenses in various shades. Arad has also designed a range of glasses that can be adjusted to fit any face for the same company.

Springs 3D-printed glasses by Ron Arad for pq

Above: Highgate style from the Springs collection

Arad was one of the first designers to work with 3D printing in 1999. "In 1999 we had our first outing with what in those days was called rapid prototyping," he said. "We did vases, lights and jewellery. There was a lot of excitement in the technology then, it was obvious it was on the cards and would be embraced by lots of people."

Other 3D-printed designs released in recent months include American football boot studs and a dress for Dita Von Teese, while a race to create the first 3D-printed house is on between a canal house in Amsterdam, a plastic dwelling to be assembled in three weeks and a home modelled on a Möbius strip.

Springs 3D-printed glasses by Ron Arad for pq

Above: Balham style from the Springs collection

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Read on more more information from pq:

Pq eyewear designed by Ron Arad introduces Springs

Pq, the original eyewear brand designed by Ron Arad adds Springs, a new collection to the pq family this spring.

Springs are a one-piece, one-material, monolithic creature. The gill-like sides allow the arms to hinge inwards freely but restrict them from opening outwards beyond the perfect width and perfect pressure for the head. A progenitor to Angel, and Corbs, now they are just part of one growing Springs family.

Standing out from the crowd, they are as playful as they are individual. Seven new styles within the SPRINGS collection share the cleverly integrated vertebrae giving a fluid continuous line unbroken by hinges and extraneous details. These unique frames enjoy curvaceous shapes and volumes, and are lightweight yet highly durable.

Made in the UK, embracing technology to overcome the constraints of traditional production techniques, Springs are made using SLS (selective laser sintering), a technique pioneered by Ron since the early 1990’s.

Pq launched in 2012 as Arad asserted; ‘There are very few ideas in the world of glasses.’ Pq’s name emanates from two letters side by side in the alphabet which together resemble a pair of glasses.

Springs also includes the distinctive Corbs, the first in the family produced from solid and laminated acetate.