The Kickstarter campaign may be over, but Northwood is just getting started. You can still get a pair, and stay in touch below:
Whether you realize it or not, the sunglasses you wear tell a story. We want that story to be one you love.
Hello Kickstarter! We are Steve and Mitch, two engineers & outdoorsman with a shared dream of building products that are just as easy on the eyes as they are on the environment. For the last 18 months we've been pouring ourselves into this project, and with your support it can finally become a reality.
When we first discovered wooden sunglasses, we loved the concept! But much to our horror, we soon learned many companies were making them from vulnerable and even endangered wood species. We couldn't stand by seeing old-growth rainforests being harvested in the name of style, so we took it upon ourselves to build a better alternative.
So we started Northwood. Handcrafting sunglasses in Canada from only local and low-impact materials, never using rainforest woods.
These are Northwoods, the first ever sunglasses to combine local woods, stone, and hemp fibre composites.
Our sunglasses are:
1. Built from local and responsibly sourced woods
2. Reinforced with hemp-fibre to last for years to come
3. Equipped with amazing polarized lenses
4. Handcrafted locally in Canada
With the help of some great friends, we have built over 40 prototypes, partnered with an amazing local manufacturer, and are ready share our project with the world. Together with your support, we can create a perfect balance of sustainability and style.
What we're doing differently:
Instead of just grabbing the cheapest or best-looking woods from the lumber yard, we have carefully researched and selected the best woods for the job.
We have settled on using two types of woods:
1. Canadian Hardrock Maple - sourced right here in Ontario & Quebec from government managed forests. We are lucky enough to be home to some of the world's largest and best managed Maple forests, right in our backyards. They boast the highest percentage of third-party certifications in the world, and enforce strict forest-management guidelines.
2. Eco-friendly reconstituted veneers - to mimic exotic wood grains without having to harvest vulnerable or endangered wood species. The reconstituted veneers we use are made from quick-growing wood species, which are coloured by water-based dyes and laminated to look just like the real thing.
Having read many reviews of other wooden sunglasses breaking, we made it our priority to make Northwoods as strong as possible. For example, glasses made from a solid piece of wood often end up breaking along the grain. So far the competition has done its best to avoid this by laminating several thinner layers of wood, but even this has its limits.
We are the first company to combine multiple layers of cross-laminated wood with hemp-fibre composites. This results in an incredibly strong frame built to withstand years of use. The Hardrock Maple we use has also proven itself in the skateboard industry as a go-to wood for its great strength and durability.
Every pair of Northwoods comes stock with shatterproof polarized lenses. No outrageous upgrade fees, just amazing lenses.
Big head or small, Northwoods are guaranteed to fit everyone comfortably. Our stainless-steel spring hinges keep your glasses perfectly locked onto your head all day.
Next Steps: Production
Now that we've finalized our design, sourced the best materials for the job, and started working with our manufacturer, it's time to start up production and get Northwoods in your hands. This is where you come in. With your support, we'll be able to fire up the presses and share Northwoods with the world.
Where Does the Funding Go?
In order to start our next production run, we need to raise a minimum $7,000. This funding will all go towards paying our local manufacturer to build us larger presses, putting a deposit on our production run, and being able to order our lenses, hinges, stone veneers, hemp-fibre, and wood in bulk. This project will only become a reality by reaching our funding goal, and that can only happen with your support.
The $7,000 we are raising will allow us to make you and your friends your very own pairs of Northwoods, and hopefully kickstart Northwood into becoming a sustainable business. We love the idea of running a locally-owned business that builds sustainable style for the world, and it would mean the world to us if you helped make that dream a reality.
By pledging to our campaign, we will reward you by sending you a pair of wooden or stone Northwoods from our first full-scale production run.
Once our campaign is successfully funded, we will send everyone a survey to specify which wood grain, or which type of stone you would like to have your glasses made with.
$1 pledge: Join the Northwood founders family! You'll be helping us spread the word, and you'll get exclusive updates on our progress.
$88 pledge: Early-bird Northwood WOOD Series Sunglasses with polarized lenses. Choice of Zebrawood, Purpleheart, Ebony, or Black Ash
$98 pledge: Kickstarter exclusive priced Northwood WOOD Series Sunglasses with polarized lenses. Choice of Zebrawood, Purpleheart, Ebony, or Black Ash
$134 pledge: Kickstarter exclusive priced Northwood STONE Series Sunglasses with polarized lenses. Choice of Slate or Granite.
Other Ways You Can Help:
Another very important way you can help our campaign is by sharing it with your friends and family. Every facebook share, tweet, or email you send out is a huge help! If you can think of anyone who might love our campaign, please send them to our project page!
Risks and challenges
We have been developing Northwood sunglasses for over 1.5 years . In that time we have built more than 40 prototypes (all of which are still being worn today!) and have already spent 6 months working with our awesome local manufacturer.
Unlike a lot of kickstarter projects out there that don't figure out their manufacturing process until they're funded, we have already done the legwork to make sure our manufacturer is 100% ready to go. We're confident knowing their team has 5+ years experience building and delivering projects similar to ours.
We have confirmed our production schedule and we are confident in our suppliers and vendors delivering on both the inputs and delivery dates.
We will do our best to make sure production runs smoothly, but there are always inherent risks in any manufacturing processes. Working with a local manufacturer makes it easy to keep a close eye on our progress and keep our backers regularly updated with any challenges and milestones we encounter.
Steve and Mitch are Mechanical Engineers with years of experience in both product design and manufacturing. At the age of 16, Steve was already running a business building custom longboards that later sold in Toronto's art galleries. Mitch has worked for 2 years as a manufacturing engineer; troubleshooting and optimizing production lines. Taking Engineering together at Queen's University, they both learned the professional design and manufacturing techniques that go into creating consumer goods.
This project was only possible with the help of some of our great friends and family: Alistair McCall, Storm Patterson, Jessie Stroebel, Andy Han, Conrad Behrman, Robin Sim, Kurt Hodge, Queen's University & the whole QSII team, and many more!Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (26 days)