Fashion Icon Iris Apfel Dead at 102

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It wasn’t until 1950 that she and her husband Carl Apfel, who passed in August 2015, started a textile company, Old World Weavers. 

In addition to running the company, Iris oversaw many restoration projects for the White House, working for nine presidents, including Harry S. Truman, Dwight D. Eisenhower, John F. Kennedy, Lyndon B. Johnson, Richard Nixon, Gerald Ford, Jimmy Carter, Ronald Reagan and Bill Clinton.

In 2005, Iris was honored for her individuality by the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Costume Institute with an exhibit titled Rara Avis (Rare Bird): The Irreverent Iris Apfel. This marked the first time the museum had ever created a clothing or accessories exhibit on a living person who wasn’t a designer.

There’s no denying that Iris, who always said that “more is more and less is a bore,” has left an indelible mark.

“Being stylish and being fashionable are two entirely different things,” she reminded her Instagram followers in August 2022. “You can easily buy your way into being fashionable. Style, I think, is in your DNA. It implies originality and courage. And the worst that can happen when you take a risk is that you fail. And you don’t die from that.”

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