Iris Apfel – The rare bird of fashion

22 May 2018

A woman that goes beyond time and trends: original and genuine, she is the most dynamic personality in the fashion world, apparel industry, and interior design.

Iris Apfel is considered a style icon still able to dominate the worlds of fashion, design, and interior design. Born in New York (1921), after her studies at New York University, she starts to collaborate with a fashion magazine considered as “The Fashion Bible”. Here, she is able to refine her sense of taste, partly inherited from her mother whom she always describes as a woman of great style.

In 1948, she marries Carl Apfel with whom she also establishes an artistic and professional partnership by starting a textile company, the Old Wild Weavers, specialized in antique fabrics. Her prestigious customers include personalities such as Greta Garbo, Estée Lauder, Montgomery Clift, and Joan Rivers and she is given the task of consultant for the restoration and manufacture of antique fabrics for the White House, in as many as nine different presidencies. She travels all over the world and her passion for street markets inspires her work and love for collecting fashion accessories and clothes. Actually, Iris boasts one of the greatest and most important collection of fashion accessories in the United States. In 2005, she is the first living person able to exhibit her clothes and accessories at the MOMA Costume Institute. This incredibly successful event leads to unexpected fame and launches Iris into a career as model, muse, and collaborator for relevant global brands.

In 2015, the famous director Albert Maysles presents “Iris”, his last film – with Emmy Awards nominees – completely dedicated to this icon. Today, at 96 years old, Iris, acclaimed as a star, continues to attend events reserved to fashion and design. She holds classes for students at fashion and design academies, has her own brand of eyewear, and keeps on working as an interior designer. With a sense of irony and self-irony, she is a cheeky and original woman, often defined as “The rare bird of fashion”. Today, Iris likes to define herself as a “geriatric starlet” who, with her bursting genuineness, irony, candour and infectious energy, attracts almost a million followers on social networks and has even launched her first book: a stimulating, charming, and inspiring work which transmits her rare and desirable joie de vivre. This book is a unique collection of reflections, anecdotes, and observations on every aspect of life and style, characterized by her typical candour, humour, and enthusiasm. “Iris Apfel: accidental icon”, contains an eclectic mix of reflections, 180 images and illustrations, both colour and black-and-white, presented in the same extemporaneous and multifaceted style that has made Iris a contemporary style icon.

Cunning aphorisms, clever anecdotes from her past to her present, digressions on style and other topics, from the decline of good manners to the importance of running the risk at times, fill the book as being suggestions for life, sometimes revealing. Everything is enhanced by beautiful colourful images, varying from page to page: photographs and personal memories, published for the first time, but also images of fashion photographers and famous illustrators, comics, and a lot more.

Latest news