in memoriam

Penny Marshall Made Tiny Glasses Her Signature Before They Were Cool

Photo: Vince Bucci/Getty Images

On Tuesday, Hollywood mourned the loss of filmmaker and actress, Penny Marshall, who died at the age of 75 this week after a long and celebrated career. The cause was reportedly complications from diabetes.

Marshall is perhaps best known for her work on A League of Their Own (1992), as well as Big (1988), a film that made her the first woman in Hollywood to direct a movie that grossed more than $100 million. Less talked-about was Marshall’s personal style, but it had a similar sense of humor, strength, and personality as her work on screen.

A native New Yorker from the Bronx, Marshall was often photographed wearing various baseball hats with the borough’s name proudly emblazoned on their brims. If she wasn’t celebrating the Bronx, then it was the Yankees, plus a large, bedazzled cross around her neck. When Marshall moved to Los Angeles, Lakers merch also made its way into her wardrobe.

Marshall’s real style trademark, though, were her tiny tinted glasses. She wore them long before Kanye West sent Kim Kardashian West a memo about the look, and even before The Matrix came out in theaters. She had them in every shade to match her shiny Converse sneakers and silk pajamas. She wore them indoors and out. And they often rested on the tip of her nose — a classic boss move.

“I would much rather feel comfortable and feel beautiful, than to feel uncomfortable, but look fantastic,” Marshall once said.

She and her tiny sunglasses will be dearly missed by many.

Penny Marshall in 1998. Photo: Time & Life Pictures/The LIFE Picture Collection/Gett
Penny Marshall in 2001. Photo: Theo Wargo/WireImage
Penny Marshall in 2002. Photo: SGranitz/WireImage
Penny Marshall in 2003. Photo: Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic
Penny Marshall in 2003. Photo: Gregg DeGuire/WireImage for ESPN
Penny Marshall in 2004. Photo: Maury Phillips Archive/WireImage
Penny Marshall in 2007. Photo: Jason Merritt/TERM/FilmMagic
Penny Marshall in 2012. Photo: NBC NewsWire/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images
Penny Marshall in 2015. Photo: Larry Busacca/Getty Images
An Ode to Penny Marshall’s Personal Style