The weekend of the 28th to the 30th of January marks an exciting time for the optical world. Opti, a major optics and eyewear trade show, will be taking place in Munich, and participants will be able to get up close and personal with the latest trends in the eyewear industry. 3D printed eyewear and the customization that it offers have been creating waves in the industry for a while now, but this year’s Opti will reveal something unique: or should we say Yuniku?
Last year saw the announcement of Yuniku, the first vision-centric 3D tailored eyewear by HOYA in collaboration with leading global 3D printing service bureau Materialise. This total system will allow opticians to scan a customer’s face, optimally position the lenses, digitally customize the eyewear frame to fit the lenses and the customer’s anatomy, and finally 3D print the frame.
Eyewear design studio and manufacturer Hoet and Aoyama have been working together with Materialise and HOYA to create a beautiful range of 3D printed eyewear for Yuniku. These will be unveiled at Opti, and will give the industry a taste of what is to come when Yuniku is officially launched. Both brands have been early pioneers of using 3D technology for their eyewear, and have been eager to participate in the Yuniku project.
For Bieke Hoet, 3D Printing is the ideal technology to create innovative designs that are tailored to the individual – and Yuniku is the natural evolution of individualized eyewear. “As an eyewear designer,” Bieke says, “I’m already familiar with how 3D Printing can revolutionize this industry. And now with Yuniku, we can share this potential with the world.”
Aoyama’s participation in the Yuniku project was also an obvious decision. Having previously collaborated with Materialise on their We DDD collection, CEO Philippe Beuscart states that “Standardized production and a one-size-fits-all approach are no longer enough. We offer customizable options that speak directly to an individual’s tastes and preferences. Aoyama’s goal with this collection was to bring true mass customization to a luxury consumer-grade product.”
It is this amalgamation of expertise that has enabled Yuniku to come to life. Materialise Business Developer Alireza Parandian will also be discussing co-creation and the key role 3D Printing has played for Yuniku in a keynote presentation at Opti, saying that “Our goal is to add true value with 3D Printing, to bring this technology to industries where it can reinvent a product for the better, transform a business model, improve a supply chain, or enhance the end-customer experience.”