Iris Apfel: the accidental icon

Effortlessly mixing and matching eclectic styles that any other person would assume won’t work – in life & fashion. 

Thats how I would describe Iris.

I’ve recently taken a liking to Iris and gone a bit crazy with researching her life and what she’s all about. I even created a Pinterest board solely dedicated to her, she’s all worth it.

Here’s 5 reasons why I find Iris Apfel so inspiring.

Iris Apfel - Hong Konk Tatle

1. She only became successful in her late 80s

This is truly inspirational because I feel like we sometimes want success right now. We tend to focus too much on being successful yesterday rather than nurturing the one thing that will make us successful tomorrow. Iris only became well known in September 2005 when the Metropolitan Museum of Art in NY exhibited her collection.

2. She found the beautiful in the unexpected

Her eclectic style is what made Iris who she was. She paired items she found in flea markets or on her travels with high fashion or designer apparel & accessories. She had no rules, she just did what she felt was right and this benefitted her tremendously. Everything to her had value or the ability to be more.

3. She stayed true to who she was and followed her heart

Iris’ sense of style is famous and will continue to be famous because she stayed true to what she believed and did what she wanted to do. Her style is certainly not for everyone and may be described by some as ‘weird’, but its this ability to make people discuss it that makes her iconic.

4. She had a positive attitude towards ageing

Iris wasn’t afraid to age. She said in her book Iris Apfel: the accidental icon – “There’s nothing wrong with wrinkles. When you’re older, trying to look years younger is foolish, and you’re not fooling anyone. When you’re seventy-five and you get a face-lift, nobody is going to think you are thirty,”

5. She wasn’t afraid of failure

“You only fail if you do not try,” said Apfel. Iris was never afraid to try something because of societal opinions. She never felt she was limited just because she was a woman. She wanted to start a fabric business so she figured out how to do it one step at a time. “Sometimes you just have to take action, even if it is a small step”

 

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