Fashion world mourns: icon Iris Apfel’s passing

HomeNewsFashion world mourns: icon Iris Apfel's passing


“Iris Barrel Apfel, August 29, 1921 – March 1, 2024,” read the caption alongside a photo of her clad in a long robe adorned with golden patterns and large black glasses.

A universally mourned loss in the Fashion industry

“Iris Apfel was a fashion icon, a visionary whose imprint on the industry will endure forever,” expressed her close ones, reflecting the profound impact she had in the fashion world and beyond.

Decades of unique and bold style

“Someone once told me: ‘You’re not pretty, and you never will be. But that’s okay. You have something much more important: you have style,'” she often recounted. This quote perfectly encapsulates the audacity and self-assurance that characterized Iris Apfel’s incomparable style.

Embracing colorful silhouettes, she urged women to shed the “uniform of black tights or jeans with a sweater, booties, and a leather jacket.” Her mantra was simple yet powerful: “dare to be different.”

A life dedicated to creativity and innovation

Born on August 29, 1921, into a Jewish family in Queens, New York, Iris Apfel was always drawn to the worlds of fashion and design. After studying art history, she began her career as an interior decorator, working on prestigious projects such as the renovation of the White House for nine successive U.S. presidents, from Harry Truman to Bill Clinton. Over the years, she developed her unique and eclectic style, skillfully blending vintage pieces with contemporary creations, thus becoming a true fashion icon.

“Try new things. Don’t be intimidated by age and numbers,” she advised, embodying a philosophy of life firmly centered on creativity and constant exploration.

An inimitable style and a legendary collection

Iris Apfel was renowned for her eccentric and bold style, characterized by colorful clothing pieces and unique accessories. Her clothing collection, amassed over decades, filled two floors of her Park Avenue apartment in New York City. In 2005, the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York dedicated a retrospective to her, showcasing her influence on the fashion world. She was also known for her extravagant jewelry, sourced passionately from both prestigious brands and local markets.

Prestigious collaborations until the End

Throughout her long career, Iris Apfel collaborated with numerous prestigious brands and institutions, becoming a true ambassador of fashion and style. She designed collections for iconic brands such as H&M, Citroën, Magnum, Happy Socks, and MAC, and even inspired a Barbie doll in her likeness. Her unique style and flamboyant personality captivated millions worldwide, making her a true fashion legend.

Her unique style and innovative spirit inspired numerous brands and prestigious institutions worldwide, making her a true ambassador of fashion and creativity.

A towering legacy in the fashion industry

“Iris Apfel was much more than a fashion icon. She was an inspiration to millions worldwide, an epitome of self-confidence and determination,” declared her admirers, underscoring the lasting impact she had on the fashion industry and beyond.

Her bold style, visionary spirit, and unwavering passion for innovation will continue to inspire future generations, making her an iconic figure of contemporary culture. Throughout her life, Iris Apfel embodied the essence of elegance and creativity, leaving behind a legacy that will endure in memories forever.

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