Rolf Spectacles – 3d printed titanium eyewear

Creating eco-friendly eyewear isn’t just not using plastics. It is a way of looking at the total cycle of a product, and trying to be as sustainable as possible on all fronts. Our eco blogger Carole has worked with the sustainable eyewear by Rolf Spectacles before, but those were made from wood. Their latest designs, (which even won them a LOFTxTEF award) are their 3d printed titanium frames, with an uber-cool rough finish that really makes them unique. The entire process to create these frames is highly sustainable, yielding zero-waste, and leaving a minimal ecological footprint, and that’s what Carole is all about!

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For ROLF Spectacles the leap from rapid prototyping to a recognized manufacturing method was only possible with selected partners. The result is one of the most innovative frames on the eyewear market. Currently, 3D printed Titanium workpieces are used in the areas of robotics, mechanical engineering, automotive, medical technology and aerospace – and recently also in eyewear production.

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For ten years, ROLF Spectacles, based in idyllic Tyrol, has stood for sophisticated design in combination with special materials. It started as a project in a cellar of the small Tyrolean community Lechaschau. There, the first eyeglass frames were designed and constructed. The first spectacle blanks were not made in a high-tech manner, but out of a milking machine and a retro-fitted living room table. Then they were shaped with a CNC milling machine, which was adapted with a moped brake. Today, the family business is growing steadily and is constantly investing in production in order to keep up to date with the latest technology. This combined with nostalgic craftsmanship enables the production of high-quality eyewear frames, which are entirely made by trained eyewear enthusiasts in the Tyrolean mountains.

Besides their new titanium frames, they create sustainable eyewear out of wood, stone, horn and 2tone combinations:

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ROLF Spectacles has already won several international awards for innovation, design and materials, including this years LOFTxTEF award for best technical sunglass.


Shooting: TEFdoesPARIS
Eyewear: Rotterdam by Rolf Spectacles
Model: Carole Riehl – Les Lunettes Écologiques Magazine
Photographer: Sophie Letessier

Author: maarten weidema

After designing eyewear for over 18 years, TEF founder Maarten Weidema now solely writes about his fellow designers in the optical industry. His mission is to publish interesting and beautiful content to the international optical arena, backed up by a large group of bloggers from around the world.

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