What is Style? Iris Apfel Interview

Posted by Jill Chivers in Fashion, Style and Shopping, Videos

This short but punchy interview with Iris Apfel had a real impact on me.  She doesn’t say too much – her answers are quite short, but full of wisdom.  Iris Apfel really came to prominence, in a global way, in 2005, when she was 83.  That is one of the stunning aspects of Ms Apfel’s life – being ‘discovered’ in her 8th decade.

Like the Fabulous Fashionistas, Iris is an older woman who is so very comfortable in her skin and she fills it entirely.  She is fully herself,  and doesn’t attempt to be anyone else.  And at the same time, by being so fully and richly herself, she somehow gives us license, or perhaps provocation, to do the same for ourselves.

I feel certain Ms Apfel would say, if asked, “Don’t copy me – find your own unique style and forms of self-expression”.

It’s rare to find a woman in the public eye who fills up every inch of her skin, who soaks up life so fully, and yet doesn’t take anything from anyone else.  She stands in her own light, and doesn’t take anyone else’s light from them.

To me, she is a role model.

I wish we could have removed the advertisement from the front of this video, but we couldn’t manage it but thank the New York Times Style video channel for making it easy for us to share this marvellous interview with you.

I’ll let you enjoy it for yourself.  Below are some of my favourite quotes from this video.

Wisdom from Iris Apfel

What is style? “Style is attitude, attitude, attitude”.

Thoughts on design: “Good design is self-expression and not copying anyone else”.

On life: “I don’t take myself seriously”.

On making plans in life: “Everything that’s important in my life has happened by accident.  I don’t plan anything. If it happens, it happens. If not, I don’t get upset about it. I missed a lot of things but you can’t do everything”.

Attitude to life? “Only one trip.  Might as well live it up”.

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    One Response to “What is Style? Iris Apfel Interview”

    1. Rebecca says:

      Great interview with Iris Apfel. She is one of a kind and I was lucky enough to see the costume exhibit “Rara Avis” at the Metropolitan Museum. I also have the beautiful book from that exhibit. Her advice is timeless and so valuable in seeking one’s style.

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