Custom-Built Iconic Machines for Modern Day Steve McQueens
Tucked away in Paris’s elegant 17th arrondissement, independent garage Blitz Motorcycles fashions bespoke machines that combine a stripped-down beatnik aesthetic with modern engineering. An infatuation with vintage led former Lycos marketing director Fred Jourden to drop everything and focus on “motorcycle creative direction” with partners in crime Léonard Janson and Hugo Jezegabel. The trio’s modus operandi is to deconstruct and reinvent existing bikes, for example, adding a 50s tank from discontinued French brand Automoto onto a modern R100/7 BMW frame with Kawasaki Z650 handlebars, before painting it military green. With just ten bikes made a year, only available at their 70-square-meter workshop, customization rises to $15,000 per bike. “Our clients aren’t middle-aged beer drinkers, but people in creative industries, who graduated from university and shower on a daily basis,” Jourden explains wryly. “Like skate culture, motorcycling has a lot to do with appearance: you want to stick out, and more importantly, look good.” The Blitz gang gave NOWNESS a breakdown of moto-style.
The Blitz Creed
Blue jeans, from brands such as Edwin. No bleached $300 pair!
A white T-shirt from Uniqlo or a vintage checkered shirt.
A second-hand diver’s watch, from Lip or Omega.
Real, vintage pilot sunglasses––never modern Ray-Bans.
A classic sailor jumper with Breton stripes, from fisherman’s apparel brand St. James.
A World War II leather jacket.