Tuesday, November 9, 2010

rare bird

"I'm a hopeless romantic. I buy things because I fall in love with them. I never buy anything just because it's valuable"

When I was living in NYC on a routine visit to the Met I happened upon what turned out to be an incredible exhibition of one woman's personal style. I wandered down to the fashion floor hoping something interesting was on display & what I discovered dazzled me. Iris Apfel was someone I knew nothing about but would never forget.

In the early ‘50s she and her husband Carl founded Old World Weavers. They specialized in weaving exact reproductions of antique-period fabric. For business they spent almost three months of each year traveling the world to find offbeat classic-period textile designs and to locate specific mills with specialized techniques to properly replicate them. On these trips Iris began to accumulate an incredible mix of unique pieces and accessories. She became known for mixing flea market finds with haute couture.
It was an inspiring collection. I fell in love with her styling. The layers & layers of colors, patterns and textures. I ended up staying for hours mulling over each ensemble of every mannequin, each donning her signature specs. I adore her maximal approach especially with all of the jewelry and accessories. She validates & inspires a lot of fashion indulgence I enjoy. She's in her lates 80's now and I aspire to be as much of a free spirit when I am her age.

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