We get better acquainted with Bieke, one of the talented designers behind Hoet, the family-owned eyewear brand and design agency.
Hoet are responsible for some of the most stylish and innovative frame designs around today, so when they agreed to collaborate with us on our H2021 collection, we were over the moon. Here, we talk to Bieke about the design process of the H2021 designs and the sustainable benefits of 3D printing.
Q1: Tell us about Hoet.
Together with my two sisters, I’m part of the 6th generation of the Hoet family. We’ve been active in the eyewear industry since 1883. My Grandfather and my sister work on the retail side and my father and I work within the Hoet eyewear design agency, which we founded in 1997. We offer both design services and distribution. Our vertical integration, heritage and knowledge in optics benefit our partners, who are taking their next steps in optics.
Q2: What excited you most about designing this collection?
As a design office, we were very excited to accept the challenge of making the Autofocals ‘good-looking’, above all else. The combination of two different 3D printed materials adds a subtle sophistication, which we were able to achieve with 3D print technology. The transparency in the metal part is realised by rectangle shapes; this is not a coincidence, but a design ‘wink’ to the rectangles used in the monogram of the brand.
Q3: How did designing for Autofocal lenses differ from designing regular lenses?
From the beginning we understood that the integration of electronics had to be managed differently than the design of regular glasses. But as always, limitations stimulated our creativity.
3D print together with Autofocal technology is definitely a next step in optics. Unlike other smart glasses, the development of Autofoal technology has resulted in a new lens design. It differs by offering a functional solution for improved vision, it’s not an application.
Q4: All the frames are 3D printed. From a design production perspective, what are the benefits of 3D printing the final product?
The 3D print technology used to produce these frames contributes to a shorter production cycle. As designers, we are situated at the beginning of the consumption chain. At Hoet, we aim for having products and business models that reflect our ethical responsibility. In contrast to traditional production processes of eyewear, when 3D printing, the production quantity is attuned with the sales quantity. This means there’s no need for excessive stock. Furthermore, there is hardly any waste of raw materials during this 3D printing process.
This means the conscious consumer takes home a product that bears ecological, social and ethical responsibility.
Q5: Which is your favourite design from the collection?
My favorites are the H1 for men and H3 for women. In my opinion, we succeeded in this challenge. Therefore, I’m very proud of this project!
Discover the H2021 collection here.