Collaborating for the second time with iconic, ultradiscreet brand Maison Martin Margiela we have combined our aligned classic, timeless and minimal aesthetic to create a new collection of sunglasses.
Building on the success of our first collaboration, we assert an attention to detail that is based on powerful inspirations. The four new themes are available in designs which represent a unique aesthetic vision and designed for ultimate comfort.
For the first time, Maison Martin Margiela has adapted its iconic Replica line to include sunglasses. The designs are as alluring and powerful as the original pieces but have been reinvented through the luxurious and precious materials used.
The collection consists of four themes:
Replica France: a rounded design with tapered sides made in acetate and based on a French design from the ’70s.
Cable Temple: the acetate frame front of this model contrasts with the delicate arms made of German metal, which end in a semi-circle of stainless steel.
Rimless: a shape which plays on the illusion that the lenses are not surrounded by a frame. The delicate slim arms are made from stainless steel.
Replica Turkey: An enlarged titanium frame, based on a Turkish Army model of the ’80s, which provides a feminine allure.
Available from November 2011 in Maison Martin Margiela boutiques and in a selection of fashion and eyewear sales outlets.
Maison Martin Margiela is among the most mysterious fashion houses in the world. Anonymity is their identity; design ingenuity and intellectual rigour are their trademarks. In this rare interview with an unknown ‘voice’ of the company, we disover what makes Margiela so enduring, and learn more about the fusion of our brands.
How and why did Maison Martin Margiela decide to collaborate with Cutler and Gross?
Cutler and Gross value quality and know-how. They are grounded by their distinctive creative approach, yet complementary [to us] in their aesthetic and expertise. The collaboration comes naturally.
What are the fundamental design principles that guide Maison Martin Margiela?
Ever since its foundation, the creative work of the house has been based on strong concepts and codes. These derive from recuperation, transformation and re-proportion. The artisanal aspect of our tailoring work is also very important, and there is always a conceptual element to our creations, which can be perceived as abstract or thought-provoking.
Our first collection together is based on irreverent design and handmade quality. We work on diverting the codes of classic glasses. We try to use new perspectives, to rethink motionless standards. Our oversized work is a good illustration of this attitude.
Cutler and Gross are making replicas of vintage eyewear that you have sourced. How did you choose these models and how will they change in the process of being reproduced by Cutler and Gross?
We sourced them from around the world, and chose them according to our mood. As with clothes, the idea of a ‘replica’ is to ‘re-propose’ vintage models as they are, while changing materials and colours.
What are the qualities embodied by Cutler and Gross that you find attractive enough to want to work with?
The fact that they support the tradition of handmade eyewear and create innovative and high-quality products that have an innate desire to make people feel good.
Maison Martin Margiela’s discretion marks it out as distinct from other fashion houses. To what extent does the company see itself as part of the contemporary fashion landscape?
The idea behind Maison Martin Margiela was, and still is, to somehow be part of the fashion system without being completely part of it either. Our focus is on what we do and not who we are as individuals. We want the attention to be on our creative expression.
Cutler and Gross and Maison Martin Margiela both attract a fiercely loyal customer. How does a design-oriented company achieve such sustained appeal?
Our aim has always been to work in our own way, to question a certain form of establishment and to create emotions. We try to awaken everyone’s curiosity without concern for gender, culture, wealth, etc…
Maison Martin Margiela recently redesigned the interior of the Paris hotel, La Maison Champs Elysées. How did you approach this project and what did you hope to achieve in undertaking it?
This collaboration has been the largest and most demanding project in terms of interior design since Maison Martin Margiela was first set up in 1988.
We have created a dramatic world in which reality and make-believe seem to blend. The décor is like a succession of stage sets. References are mixed to create an unusual atmosphere in which past and present jostle harmoniously.
What is next for Maison Martin Margiela?
We are looking forward to seeing the beautiful new glasses we have made with Cutler and Gross on the market.