Reading glasses

by | Sustainability (↓) | Usefulness (↑) | 0 comment | 4 questions

My first pair of reading glasses, black plastic frame and lenses. No brand logo. No size info. Slightly worn, scratched and in need of a polish.

Where and how is it used?

I keep these in the car, just in case I need them the prescription is out of date but they're useful in an an emergency. I need my glasses to read and eat but they're often difficult to find. So older ones are left in places where I can find them. When I forget them I'm lost, other people have to be my eyes.

What did you or someone else pay for it?

£40 I can't remember exactly.

Why do you want to add it to the museum?

It's a basic commodity that I need to function. I'm terrified of the idea of laser eye surgery, but do think these will be heritage items one day.


How was it made?

Is made in a factory

Is farmed

Is mass-produced

Is produced by local cottage industry

Is made to particular specifications

Is craft / hand-made

Is foraged

Is found

Is colonised

Is a service


Materials & Making

Who made or produced your commodity?

I don't know. I got them from Specsavers in Exeter. They will have been assembled for me with frames and lenses that match my eyes.

Who was paid to make it?

Factory workers and lens makers?

What skills does it take to make it?

Machine operation?

Where was it made?

I don't know. There's no Made In information

What does it cost to make it?

No idea. I imagine it's pretty cheap. It's a basic commodity,

What is it made from?

1. Lenses:

Two glass or plastic lenses to fit the prescription for my eyes

2. Frame:

To hold the lenses in place in front of my eyes, resting on the bridge over my nose.

3. Arms:

2 attachd to the frame and resting on the top of my ears to keep the glasses in place.

4. Hinges:

2 to attach frame to arms and to hinge, allowing glass a to fold flat when not in use.

Buying & Owning

Who decides how much it costs?

Specsavers

Who or what assesses its quality?

Quality control at factory & optical assistant of optometrist on store

Where is it sold?

In high street stores and online

Who or what sells it?

Opticians

How did this thing arrive from where it was made to where you got it?

I picked if up in store where it's fit was checked

Where is it used?

Where I eat and read.

Where is it kept?

In the car

How and by whom is it cared for?

I care for it, polish it occasionally but have lost its case.

How long will it last?

For ever

Where will it go when it's finished with?

In the car! It is finished with almost.

What is it worth?

Nothing


How do you and others value this commodity?

See the values contributed by visitors and those of the donor. And add your own values to this commodity.

Total times valued3
Positive (↑)Usefulness
Negative (↓)Sustainability
Overall Positive146
Overall Negative-55
Controversy30 (0 = most controversial)
  

What do these numbers mean?

This data that we have collected over time in our database means nothing without interpretation. A relational database, which we are using here, is technology that enables designers of websites and software to compare, contrast, interrogate and infer relations within data. The act of designing a database is not objective but driven by the agency of its creators and owners.

Within the MoCC Collection data is used to help think through the relations between values, commodities and data. Can we describe our values using sliders and numbers? How do we infer meaning such as controversy from data?

Below is a brief explanation of the some calculations and how these help make decisions about what is shown on the site.

  • Controversy Score:
    (Total Positive Values) + (Total Negative Values)

    The closer the value is to zero the more controversial it is in relation to other commodities. Used to infer that values associated with one commodity divide opinion more than another.

  • Average Value Score (used in the sliders):
    (Total Positive for Value + Total Negative for Value) ÷ Total Times Valued

    Used to infer a collective value associated with a commodity.

How do you value this commodity?

To add your own values click VALUE THIS COMMODITY and move the sliders left and right to add your own values - then click SUBMIT
show donor's original values
- 0
22 +
- 0
16 +
- 0
13 +
- 0
11 +
- 0
10 +
- 0
9 +
- 0
10 +
- 0
8 +
- 0
8 +
- 0
5 +
- 1
3 +
- 0
2 +
- 0
2 +
- 1
3 +
- 0
2 +
- 0
2 +
- 3
7 +
- 0
3 +
- 0
4 +
- 4
0 +
- 3
0 +
- 4
0 +
- 8
6 +
- 3
0 +
- 8
0 +
- 20
0 +

Questions and answers

Help to reveal unknown quantities, properties and uses of this commodity by answering this MoCC curator's questions.

Question: What happens to recycled glasses? Who gets to use them where?

Answers:

Maybe this? https://photo.craftgawker.com/wp-content/uploads/craft/2012/07/152440.jpeg

by mocc on July 28th at 8:42am

Question: Why are the arms on glasses always too short for my head? Whose head are they made for? Where are their ears?!

Answers:

Oh glasses! Let me tell you you’re not alone my bespectacled friend- my glasses have been sat on, dropped, and have a permanent sheen from surviving the dishwasher. But where would we be without them? (I’d most likely be in a hedge- unable to see where I was going)!.

According to wikihow, the arms of glasses measure typical measure between 130 and 150mm from the frame to the point at which they curve to ‘supposedly’ fit your ears. It’s based on the range around average male and female head measurements ‘supposedly’- though it’s always good to be different! Apparently ladies glasses tend to stick around 140mm as a maximum. To find the measurement of your glasses ‘arms’, check out the inner side where the plastic sits behind the ear- there should be a string of three number groups separated by dashes. The last three numbers (after the third dash) should be the length. Without my glasses on and (mixed with some dishwasher scratching), I can just about make out 140. See if you can find yours.

So, the next thing to do, might be to go back to the opticians and ask them to properly measure your head, from the temple to behind the ear, to your vision line. Apparently “properly fitting glasses will not rest on your cheeks or touch your eyebrows. They should stay in position no matter where you’re looking, or what facial expression you’re making”.

Scoping out online web forums, it seems length of arms and ears are a common, but easily fixable problem. Correct measurement should do the trick, but if you’ve got a particularly lengthy nose to ear measurement, panic not- it’s possible to get specially custom-made glasses from ‘edgy’ sounding places like this- https://www.cubitts.co.uk/bespoke (slightly too cool for me!). I don’t know about you but going to the opticians is a nightmare- once I take my glasses off to try on a new pair, I have no idea what I look like, and just resemble a plonker trying to squint as close as possible to the mirror with little avail! So, perhaps online glasses creation is the way forward- you can actually see what glasses you’re buying (though bank accounts may be less impressed!).

Glasses with ears is an interesting one- a quick google search brought up this; https://www.amazon.com/Bunny-Glasses-With-Ears/dp/B01CBX2D76. As dashing as I’m sure you’d look, perhaps not the everyday wear you were looking for. It’s quite popular however to buy glasses with ‘ears’ of sorts for running- rubber ear supports or clip around straps, reducing the chance of flailing them off and then having to feel your way round the rest of the race. http://www.independent.co.uk/extras/indybest/outdoor-activity/5-best-running-glasses-10276837.html . Perhaps this might help with comfortable fitting around ears in the short term though? I’ve got a connective tissue issue which makes my ears super flexible (rolling them up and inside out is perhaps my favourite party trick, though possibly no-one elses!)- so quite often my glasses bend my ears over giving a crooked glasses mad scientist appearance. Perhaps I need to look into getting some of these attractive clip around strips- I’m sure we could start some kind of trend?! Just be careful when you’re googling, because there are actual ‘reading glasses for ears’ which turned out to be really small hearing aids- apparently comfortable and sturdy for active users. Their size means I’d undoubtedly loose them without my glasses though…!

Hope that helps- and good luck with those pesky glasses. If you do throw in the towel with them and find some different fitting ones, don’t forget that you can donate your old glasses here- https://www.visionaidoverseas.org/recycling!

Pleasure finding out this info Gabrielle

by MoCCconsultantGabrielle on August 25th at 10:07am

Oh glasses! Let me tell you you’re not alone my bespectacled friend- my glasses have been sat on, dropped, and have a permanent sheen from surviving the dishwasher. But where would we be without them? (I’d most likely be in a hedge- unable to see where I was going)!.

According to wikihow, the arms of glasses measure typical measure between 130 and 150mm from the frame to the point at which they curve to ‘supposedly’ fit your ears. It’s based on the range around average male and female head measurements ‘supposedly’- though it’s always good to be different! Apparently ladies glasses tend to stick around 140mm as a maximum. To find the measurement of your glasses ‘arms’, check out the inner side where the plastic sits behind the ear- there should be a string of three number groups separated by dashes. The last three numbers (after the third dash) should be the length. Without my glasses on and (mixed with some dishwasher scratching), I can just about make out 140. See if you can find yours.

So, the next thing to do, might be to go back to the opticians and ask them to properly measure your head, from the temple to behind the ear, to your vision line. Apparently “properly fitting glasses will not rest on your cheeks or touch your eyebrows. They should stay in position no matter where you’re looking, or what facial expression you’re making”.

Scoping out online web forums, it seems length of arms and ears are a common, but easily fixable problem. Correct measurement should do the trick, but if you’ve got a particularly lengthy nose to ear measurement, panic not- it’s possible to get specially custom-made glasses from ‘edgy’ sounding places like this- https://www.cubitts.co.uk/bespoke (slightly too cool for me!). I don’t know about you but going to the opticians is a nightmare- once I take my glasses off to try on a new pair, I have no idea what I look like, and just resemble a plonker trying to squint as close as possible to the mirror with little avail! So, perhaps online glasses creation is the way forward- you can actually see what glasses you’re buying (though bank accounts may be less impressed!).

Glasses with ears is an interesting one- a quick google search brought up this; https://www.amazon.com/Bunny-Glasses-With-Ears/dp/B01CBX2D76. As dashing as I’m sure you’d look, perhaps not the everyday wear you were looking for. It’s quite popular however to buy glasses with ‘ears’ of sorts for running- rubber ear supports or clip around straps, reducing the chance of flailing them off and then having to feel your way round the rest of the race. http://www.independent.co.uk/extras/indybest/outdoor-activity/5-best-running-glasses-10276837.html . Perhaps this might help with comfortable fitting around ears in the short term though? I’ve got a connective tissue issue which makes my ears super flexible (rolling them up and inside out is perhaps my favourite party trick, though possibly no-one elses!)- so quite often my glasses bend my ears over giving a crooked glasses mad scientist appearance. Perhaps I need to look into getting some of these attractive clip around strips- I’m sure we could start some kind of trend?! Just be careful when you’re googling, because there are actual ‘reading glasses for ears’ which turned out to be really small hearing aids- apparently comfortable and sturdy for active users. Their size means I’d undoubtedly loose them without my glasses though…!

Hope that helps- and good luck with those pesky glasses. If you do throw in the towel with them and find some different fitting ones, don’t forget that you can donate your old glasses here- https://www.visionaidoverseas.org/recycling!

Pleasure finding out this info! Gabrielle

by MoCCconsultantGabrielle on August 26th at 9:19am

Question: Why don't glasses have 'made in' info on them when other things do?

Answers:

This really is an excellent question and something I’d never thought about- so thanks for asking it! Having just inspected my glasses, all I can read (even with poor eyesight!) is the measurements and the maker ‘Cheap Monday’.

My first thoughts were around space- perhaps there’s limited space in which they can engrave or print the ‘made in’, but I’m not sure that this is good enough reason. There is very limited transparency, or explanation about why made in info is missing- even my glasses case says ‘made in china’. I’ve enquired on your behalf, and will get back in touch when response is received. But, I’ve done some research and the manufacture of glasses in the meantime.

Glasses sure do have a pretty interesting ‘made in’ history- it’s something I never envisaged getting so excited about on a Friday morning! Eye glasses have been around for almost 8 centuries, improving people vision since they were first invented (albeit to varying degrees!!). Today they’re a ‘hot fashion accessory’ that the wearer can change to match moods or to convey an image. But, historically, ‘hotness’ was perhaps less on the agenda- the earliest glasses were unframed and held in front of ones face. These then progressed to being tied around your head with a ribbon, or attached to suits of armour- I’m sure being able to see when going to battle is probably a good thing (perhaps!?).

Traditionally, glasses were very expensive, until the American glasses making industry boomed. Italy too remains a big competitor in the eyewear industry. There is every chance your glasses could have been made in either of these places.

There are all different kinds of components making up your glasses, all from different homes. The main frame was once made from tortoiseshell and horn, but lots were actually made from celluloid- an early plastic that can be dyed or moulded to resemble the animal horn/shell. Today, tortoises are saved though, as most glasses frames are made from cellulose acetate. Cellulose acetate can also be found in cigarette filters and playing cards- though neither may improve your eye sight as much. Traditionally, this material is from cotton/tree pulp cellulose, but today it’s often mixed or replaced with nylon and polyester. Making them into the final product is a complex, technical process- the video here shows it nicely- https://www.selectspecs.com/info/how-prescription-glasses-are-made/.
I’m sorry I can’t answer your question specifically at this time- it’s a shame glasses manufacturers aren’t as transparent as the products they sell!

Thanks! Gabrielle

by MoCCconsultantGabrielle on August 26th at 9:14am

Question: Why don't high street opticians offer a lens replacement when your prescription changes? Why do we need new frames too?

Answers:

Thanks for this question.

It looks to me like it is possible to get your lens replaced in your old frames- you just have to be insistent! It’s a common question in ‘money saving expert’- apparently companies are often unwilling to do it as ‘the frames are too old’, however, the majority seem to have had success. Specsavers has received good reviews for doing this when asked (however firmly!), as have independent vision shops. There’s a fab article here about just this, and how it could save money and reduce waste too- https://www.theguardian.com/money/2009/oct/04/save-money-glasses-prescription

Hope that helps- and good luck with future lens replacements!!

by MoCCconsultantGabrielle on August 25th at 11:14am

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