Wednesday, April 3, 2013


LAVISH!  I encountered the word earlier today in a headline about a British designer's home.  Somehow I wandered from there to Iris Apfel.  Quickly enchanted upon learning she is in her nineties, I went looking for more and more I found.  Iris may be the Queen of More! 

Photos of her apartment reveal 'no fear' in accessorizing to the limit.  Lavish and more! 

This first photo of Apfel in her own apartment almost brought me to tears.  She and her style brought a freshet of memories of my daughter's elder godmother.  The hair and the style are so alike.  Visits to OG's home were always a treat because she was an exquisite entertainer and an doyenne of décor.   She inspired my glass candlestick collection.  She turned Oriental rugs upside down for stair runners.  Her tiny backyard was known as the North 40.  The American flag flew outside her front door when she was receiving.  Ah, the style, the imagination, the flair...I love it. 

Style.  It is, after all, what you got and not what someone tells you to have.  Can it be learned?  Perhaps.  But for some it seems innate and they are the ones who are not encumbered by rules.

Clearly, Ms. Apfel is paying no tribute to the current trend toward bare that is so prevalent in the magazines I see.  This room was built over time, not acquired in the few months it takes to depopulate a home in the interest of current trends.  Depopulate?  I don't know.  I've always made up my own words.  It fits my message.

I am reminded of the old Frank Sinatra song, I Did It My Way.  My daughter once used it on her father in a situation where he and I disagreed about how to do something.  She looked at her dad with an impish grin and sand "I did it my way and I did it oooh-ver".  Clearly this lady does it her way.  I have stacks of books but I am always overcome by a reality gauge that nags "What if someone wants to look through one of them?"  Clearly, in this case, that is not a primary consideration.  Love it!!
I wear bangles and I keep mine in a pottery bowl on my dresser so I was pleased with this idea.  She collects and designs jewelry.  At the bottom of this post I will link to an article about her jewelry obsession and how it began. 
There!  Books to be perused if one has such a need.  To some this may be a cluttered hallway.  To me it is a divine passage.
Iris Apfel.  I had never heard of her.  I often find folks in the design world with lavish credentials whom I do not know.  So much to learn.  So little time.  At least that is what I thought until I encountered Iris Apfel.  She's ninety-something.  I have a way to go and a clear and present need to learn more but preserve what I know.  I loved finding this lady and will continue to read and study her.
Passion.  Lavish passion or passion for lavish?
Here's the link to the jewelry article:


  1. I adore Mrs. Arpel, her style and her apartment. In fact, last year, I did a post on her; she's an inspiration. Let's face it, when one has lived for any amount of time and lived an interesting life, one is bound to have a plethora of belongings...dare I say treasures! Visiting from Dewena and enjoying my visit, Neighbor. I'm in southwest VA.

  2. love your blog! also have come over from dewena. and am just enjoying browsing!
    I first met iris on the 'advanced style' blog. now he's published a wonderful coffee table book on all the fabulous ladies of style.
    i am a cozy minimalist. could never live with all of her treasures. but i love to visit. and design ~ great design and flair ~ are always a feast to me.
    like dining on fabulous food and getting too full really ~ then going back to my spare but lovely little apartment to relax! LOL glad to meet you.


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