Iris Apfel nee Barrel is an American businesswoman, interior designer, and fashion icon. As a young woman, Apfel worked for Women’s Wear Daily and for interior designer Elinor Johnson. She also was an assistant to illustrator Robert Goodman. In 1948, she married Carl Apfel. Two years later, they launched the textile firm Old World Weavers and ran it until they retired in 1992. From 1950 to 1992, Iris Apfel took part in several design restoration projects, including work at the White House for nine presidents. In 2016, she performed in a television commercial for the French car DS 3, and was the face of Australian brand Blue Illusion.
I Was Always Known In My Industry, And I Always Enjoyed A Modicum Of Popularity.
I Love High-end Designers, But A Head-to-toe Designer Look For Me Is Extremely Boring. I've Always Mixed It Up.
Coco Chanel Once Said That What Makes A Woman Look Old Is Trying Desperately To Look Young. Why Should One Be Ashamed To Be 84? Why Do You Have To Say That You're 52? Nobody's Going To Believe You Anyway, So Why Be Such A Fool? It's Nice That You Got To Be So Old. It's A Blessing.
I Swear On Everything Holy I Do Not Know What's On The Internet About Me.
You Learn As You Grow Up, If You're Intelligent - Or Even Three-quarter Witted - That There's No Free Lunch. You Pay For Things In Various Ways. Living, Loving, Everything Else Is A Matter Of The Same Principles: You Learn To Work With What You Have.
Creativity Is Down The Tube. And People Give A Lot Of Lip Service To Individuality. I Know They All Appreciate It, But They All Say They Would Like To Do It, But They Don't Want To Work At It, And It Doesn't Come Out Of The Sky.
My Look Is Either Very Baroque Or Very Zen - Everything In Between Makes Me Itch.
You Don't Find Out Who You Are Unless You Work At It.
Colour Can Raise The Dead.
I Go Out In New York, And I Think, Boy, You Can Look At Someone And Pretty Much Determine Their Zip Code. Everyone Seems To Want To Conform. I Wonder, Are They All Just Button-pressers, On The Internet All Day Long? I Don't Know.
If You Don't Learn Constantly, You Don't Grow, And You Will Wither. Too Many People Wither On The Vine. Sure, It Gets A Little Harder As You Get Older, But New Experiences And New Challenges Keep It Fresh.
The World Is Not Black And White; There Are Lots Of Shades Of Grey. There Are Good Things And Bad Things In Every Era, And I Think It's Kind Of Very Blindfolded To Say One Era Was Wonderful, As It Was Wonderful, But There Were A Lot Of Bad Things As Well.
I'm Not A Pretty Person. I Don't Like Pretty, So I Don't Feel Badly. Most Of The World Is Not With Me, But I Don't Care.
There's Different Shopping In Paris Than There Is At A Bazaar In Istanbul, But They're All Wonderful.
Technologically, I Live In The 17th Century; I Don't Have A Computer, I Don't Have Any Of That Stuff. I Don't Look At The Internet, Although I Know People Tell Me I'm All Over It. Somebody Told Me They Googled Me, And They Said I Was Mentioned Two Million Times, Some Stupid Thing... But Who Cares?
Being An Individual Takes Effort. Most People Are Pretty Lazy. And That's Ok! I Mean, There Are More Important Things Than Fashion. If It's Going To Stress You Out To Have A Sense Of Style, Don't Do It. The Important Thing Is To Be Comfortable So You Can Get On With Your Life.
I Don't Get Dressed Up Every Day. I'm Very Busy. I Get Really Annoyed When People Talk About Me As A 'Fashionista.' I Get Dressed Up When I Have To Go Out. Most Of The Time, I'm Running Around In Jeans.
I'd Rather Go To A Flea Market Than Just About Anything. It's The Process I Like - The Same With Getting Dressed. If I've Got Someplace To Be, I'll Spend More Time Getting Dressed Than I Spent At The Actual Event. Sometimes. Even In My Own Closet, I Love To Dig And Search And Find.
My Father Told Me Once Not To Expect Anything From Anybody So I Wouldn't Be Disappointed. If Somebody Was Nice And Did Nice Things For Me, I Should Be Overjoyed, But I Shouldn't Go Through Life Expecting It, Which Is Very Good Advice.
I Still Have The Dress I Wore On The First Date With My Husband, Which Was More Than 66 Years Ago. I Still Have It, And It Still Fits.
I Think People Should Express Themselves More And Not Just Buy What's In. While It Can Be Very Beautiful, And It May Suit You Perfectly, I'm Sure It Doesn't Suit Everyone In The Same Way. I Like People Who Express Themselves And Are More Individualistic.
In America, It Has Been Proven That The Bulk Of Spending Money Is In The Hands Of Women Between 60 And 80, So It's So Stupid. The People Who Do Have The Time And Money To Shop Are Either Retired Or Empty-nesters.
I Think Some People Like Me Because I'm Different. I Don't Think Like Everybody Else. People Are So Tied Up In The Worst Parts Of Technology These Days. They Live A Life Pressing Buttons. They Don't Use Their Imaginations.
Aging Gracefully Is About No Heavy Makeup, And Not Too Much Powder Because It Gets Into The Wrinkles, And, You Know, To Not Get Turtle Eyelids And To Not Try To Look Young.
Shock Can Kill You. Shock Is Terrible. But What You've Got To Do Is Live In The Present, Which Is What I Have Always Done.
I Was In Art School Since I Was Five Years Old. I've Always Been To Art School. Everything That's Happened To Me, Nothing's Been Planned. I've Never Had A Business Plan. I Just Kind Of Fell Into It, And I Liked It, And I Took A Chance. I Took A Lot Of Chances In My Life.
There Was Pauline De Rothschild, Who I Thought Was Very Fabulous, And Millicent Rogers, The Standard Oil Heiress, Very Chic, Very Clever, Very Original. I Admired Both Those Women Very Much. And I Had A Great Example With My Mother, Who Was Extremely Chic.
I Used To Love To Create Outfits, And I Still Do - I Just Don't Have The Time. How Can You Wear One Thing And Never Wear It Again? Even My Wedding Dress - I Had A Dress Made That I Could Wear Again. I'm A Child Of The Depression, So I'm Very, Very Practical.
Understated Jewellery Is Not For Me. It's Too Itsy-bitsy. My Husband Is Lucky, As I've Never Had A Yen For Real Jewels.
I Mix Everything Up. A Museum Curator Once Said To Me That There Is A Great Jazz Component To The Way I Do Things Because Good Jazz Is Improvisation And Draws Elements From All Different Cultures. And That's The Way I Do Everything - The Way I Dress And Decorate.
I Live In The Dark Ages, The 17th Century. Actually, I Would Have Loved To Be In Paris In The Early 20th Century When The Ballets Russes Were There And Chanel Was Designing.
I Had A Very Brilliant Father Who Was Not Only Intellectual, But Was Street-smart And Very Curious To Boot. The Day I Found Out That He Didn't Know Everything, I Grew Up. It Was A Shock. I Just Thought That The Man Was The End-all Of Everything, And He Knew The Answer To Everything. Then I Found Out I'd Have To Find Out My Own Answers.
You Can't Try To Be Somebody You're Not; That's Not Style. If Someone Says, 'Buy This - You'll Be Stylish,' You Won't Be Stylish Because You Won't Be You. You Have To Learn Who You Are First, And That's Painful.
When You Don't Dress Like Everybody Else, You Don't Have To Think Like Everybody Else.
I Don't Expect To Find Inspiration. It Just Sort Of Comes. Sometimes You Step On A Bug And You Get Inspired.
I Think People Try So Hard To Learn Everything That They Miss All The Wonderful Essentials. There Is So Much Mystery In Life That You Should Leave A Mystery.
I'm From New York. My Grandparents Were Settlers Of Long Island City. When They Came Here, There Was No Bridge, And They Had To Hire A Boat Across The River. They Had A Farm, And My Grandmother Had To Go Once A Week To Manhattan To Buy Provisions - Very Primitive.
You Have To Push Yourself When You're Older Because It's Very Easy To Fall Into The Trap. You Start To Fall Apart - You Just Have To Do Your Best To Paste Yourself Together. I Think Doing Things And Being Active Is Very Important. When Your Mind Is Busy, You Don't Hurt So Much.
I Don't Do Very Much For Beauty. I Use Very Simple Things On My Skin. I Haven't Got Time. I Would Always Get Facials And Then Come Home Laden With Product, And Pay A Lot Of Money And Never Use It. Anyway, One Day A Dermatologist Told Me To Use Cetaphil To Clean My Face And As A Moisturizer, And That's What I Do.
Nothing I Ever Did I Expected To Do. It Just Kind Of Happened.
It's Better To Be Happy Than To Be Well-dressed.
I Had The Good Fortune To Be Able To Take A Course With Margaret Mead. I Had A Fabulous Art Course, Where It Was Explained To Me That Nothing Exists In A Vacuum, That Everything Is A Result Of The Period In Which It's Done - The Economics, The Sociology, The Politics, All Sewn Together. That Was A Very Important Lesson.
I Like To Improvise.
Fashion And Interior Design Are One And The Same.
I Never Had To Look For Confidence Because I Just Wore What I Wanted To Wear. I Would Never Wear Anything To Offend My Husband Or My Mother, But Outside Of That, I Always Figured, I Hope I'm Not A Rebel, And I Hope Everybody Liked It. And If They Didn't Like It, It Really Was Not Going To Disturb Me Because It Was Their Problem, Not Mine.
I Get Very Involved With My Things, And They Are Not Standard Equipment.
My Mother Was A Big Influence; She Was Exceedingly Chic, Completely Dressed In A Completely Different Manner Than I Did. I Was A Child Of The Depression, So She Taught Me All About Accessories, And I Always Tell Everybody She Worships At The Altar Of The Accessory.
I Think People Have To Sharpen Their Eyes And Look. I Always Feel Like A Big Sponge: I Feel Like I Learn Lots Of Things By Osmosis, And I Feel That I'm Always Absorbing. I Mean, When People Say, 'What Is Your Inspiration?' I Could Throw Up. I Mean, I'm Inspired By The Fact I Get Up In The Morning. And I'm Still Here.
I Just Roll With The Punches.
Technology Is A Wonderful Thing, But I Think It's Violently Misused.