Spotlight on Sophia Edelstein / by Haley Smith

Meet Sophia Edelstein - founder of Pair Eyewear, a glasses company in which kids can choose and design their own frames.

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Tell us about Pair Eyewear.

Pair Eyewear makes wearing prescription and nonprescription glasses and sunglasses exciting, empowering and playful for children. We sell interchangeable frames that allow children to quickly and easily customize the look of their glasses anytime, anywhere. In a ~$13 billion US market that has remained unchanged, We believes glasses for children can be more than a static medical device. Glasses can be a canvas on which children express their evolving interests and growing personalities. Through an e-commerce platform, Pair is redesigning the glasses experience, making it engaging for children and painless for parents.

 

What was your experience like at Stanford, and how did it help you as an entrepreneur?

Before beginning Stanford, I had no idea I would be interested in entrepreneurship or even knew what it meant to be a startup company or to grow a business. Beginning my freshman year I met students and joined organizations that taught me about design thinking, building products and need finding. I quickly became fascinated by combining my interest in healthcare with my passion for solving problems. Stanford was the perfect environment to do this in because I was able to take classes outside of my major in marketing, design thinking, entrepreneurship, and economics to gain a strong foundation that would later allow me to begin Pair with my co-founder during our senior year while both still finishing our degrees, writing a senior thesis and enjoying our last year at Stanford.  

 

What is your advice to other young entrepreneurs on coming up with an idea that disrupts the industry, as Pair is doing?

My first piece of advice is to do research and talk to your user as much as possible to make sure your need exists and your product is solving for that need. You want to prove out as many of your assumptions as you can in the fastest and cheapest way. I highly encourage everyone to interview as many potential customers as you can, create customer archetypes, and figure out how your product fits in to the daily lives of your users. If during these interviews your customers are asking when they can buy your product, or grabbing it out of your hands you know you have a great fit!

 

My second piece of advice is to connect to as many entrepreneurs who are just one or two steps ahead of where you are. People are so willing to help and you should never be intimidated to ask for advice. They were just in the position you are in not too long ago!