Iris Barrel Apfel is someone who dresses to impress.
Never one to follow trends, her eclectic style is a mix of high-end, low-end, and vintage duds.
A darling of the fashion set for years, her appeal has officially gone mainstream, thanks to an early aughts museum exhibit, a recent documentary, and modelling gigs with fashion brand Kate Spade, accessories designer Alexis Bittar, and cosmetics juggernaut MAC.
By marching to the beat of her own drum, the former interior designer and textiles importer has become, as she puts it, “a 93-year-old cover girl.”
Earlier this spring, a documentary on her life, “Iris,” let fans meet the woman behind those signature giant glasses, and audiences were enchanted, as was one Kanye West (more on that below).
Keep scroll ling to get to know fashion’s latest blooming star.
Apfel studied fine arts at Wisconsin University and New York University. After working as a correspondent for Women's Wear Daily, she apprenticed for an interior designer and later stepped out on her own as a decorator and textiles importer.
She married Carl Apfel -- who celebrates his 100th birthday in the film -- in 1948 and started Old World Weavers, their design business that sourced and created unique textiles.
In one of the most talked-about scenes of the film, Apfel tells Kanye West he's a 'handsome young fella' at a Fashion Week event and makes him blush.
Here's what Apfel had to say about the documentary: 'I liked it. It's kind of strange to see yourself. But everyone seems to have reacted so... profoundly. I never would have expected anything like that. I've never made any plans for any of these things. I never thought my life would take a turn like this. I've turned into a 93-year-old cover girl, which ain't easy.'
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