As far as luxurious eyewear goes, few do it quite as good as Jacques Marie Mage. Founded by Jerome Mage in Hollywood, they make small-batch, hand-crafted frames inspired by the last three centuries of design. Dedicated to marrying timeless designs and the kind of craftsmanship you’d expect to find on a family heirloom, it’s no surprise they’ve recently been spotted on the faces of style-wise celeb royalty, including Beyonce. Yes, Beyonce.
What even the most dedicated followers of J.M.M. might have missed, though, is the brand’s intriguing pool of inspirations behind each of their frames. These can include anything from Art Deco to American Folk to La Belle Époque and often specifically references the heroes and anti-heroes from the backwaters and back streets of history; be it erotically charged sculpturess, Thelma Ellen Wood, or the American flapper, Zelda Fitzgerald.
As it’s officially spring now - we promise, it actually is - Jacques Marie Mage has just launched the Spring 2018 collection and we’ve been lucky enough to scoop some of the limited edition pieces for the Seen shelves. To celebrate, we thought we’d take a look at some of the more Rock ‘n’ Roll inspirations behind this latest batch of goodies and the frames they inspired. Take it away...
Slide into those sequin spangled tights, liberally apply your mum’s prized eyeliner, and go find some sort of gong to bang. Go on, do it. Because first up is none other than glam rock superstars, T Rex. The band behind the soundtrack to many a misspent youth, and a lot of the highlights on that Billy Elliot soundtrack, they racked up a whopping 21 Top 40 hits, sparked a sparkly revolution in glam rock, and paved the way for the start of punk all before Marc Bolan’s untimely death, aged 29. Not bad for four lads from Stoke Newington.
While not quite as outlandish as you might have expected from a pair of T Rex-inspired sunglasses, these oval Jacques Marie Mage Rex frames do have a wild side. Part of a limited batch of just 300 pieces, they’re made from sculpted beta titanium wiring, feature titanium side shielding, and come fitted with glam-as-hell 70s tint lenses. Groovy.
Before Pussy Riot, before the Spice Girls, before even Blondie, the inimitable Suzie Quatro was blazing trails for female fronted superheroin, rock Goddesses. Of the same Glam Rock ilk as Bolan et al, she’s probably most famous for her string of seventies belters, Can the Can and The Wild One, but those of us that frequent late night BBC Radio Two might know her best for her work on the other side of the airwaves.
Jacques Marie Mage’s Quatro-referencing shades pay homage to the star in all-out, octagonal glory. Available in either gold or sterling hues, Quatro is a titanium frame enhanced with delicate acetate highlights around the lenses. Like it’s partner in crime, the Rex, Quatro has folding side shields designed to add mystery and allow the wearer to remain incognito. Details like sturdy monoblock titanium hinges and hairline engraving bring a serving of that well-loved Jacques Marie Mage luxury in the proverbial bucket load.
Okay, okay, you got us. Carlo Mollino isn’t strictly speaking a rock star in as far as he didn’t actually ever make any music. However, he was a renegade in the design world and is credited as sprouting some pretty eccentric sayings including the exceedingly quotable, "Everything is permissible as long as it is fantastic." And that’s got to make him pretty rock ‘n’ roll, doesn’t it?
See the full range of Torino colourways here
As well as designing some iconoclastic furniture, Carlo’s famous for a pretty outrageous architectural output with his work on the Teatro Regio in Torino being largely considered his best. Inspired by that very same theatre, as well as the man himself, these Torino glasses from Jacques Marie Mage make a suitably big statement. Available as either sun or optical, Torino is built using custom double-laminated acetate and includes some rather luxurious precious metal detailing. Bellissimo!