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Women's 1950s catseye sunglasses with diamante and silver engraved white frame and blue lenses

Date: 1950s
Overall (unfolded): 40 x 145 x 130 mm, 31.24 g
Medium: Plastic, glass, diamante
Credit Line: ANMM Collection
Object Name: Sunglasses
Object No: 00046088

User Terms

    SignificanceThese cats eye sunglasses are a representative example of accessories that added glamour to beach and poolside fashion in the 1950s.
    HistoryWhile the use of tinted eyeglasses dates back to the 12th century Chinese dynasties, modern sunglasses only emerged in the early 20th century. 1n 1929 American Sam Foster began mass producing sunglasses to protect people's eyes from the sun. Foster began selling sunglasses under the name Foster Grant on the boardwalk of the beaches of Atlantic City, New Jersey. By 1930 sunglasses were all the rage as both a form of eye protection and a fashion statement.

    Sunglass lenses are made from glass or plastic, and frames range in style from aviators worn by the US military, to Wayfarers favoured by James Dean and the cats eye design popularised by Marilyn Monroe in the 1950s.

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