Last week, style icon Iris Apfel and online retailer Grandin Road launched the home decor collection "Iris Loves Grandin Road," consisting of an array of tchotchkes, furnishings, and entertaining pieces that echo the fashionista-meets-interior designer’s energetic and eccentric MO.
Apfel, who is a master of layering clothing and jewelry, and mixing patterns and colors, knows firsthand the importance of accessorizing. And in Apfel’s latest collection, her joyful style philosophy extends to the home.
“You spend a major part of your life at home,” Apfel says. “You want to be cheered up a bit and have fun. I think bright colors and objects can do that.”
The new line of furnishings and decor draws inspiration from a Haitian painting in Apfel’s art collection. “It’s a painting of lots of different animals. It’s almost like a family portrait of different animals together,” she says. “I thought, 'How wonderful if we could do some tableware,' and then things sprung from there.”
Caribbean motifs, organic materials, and vibrant hues come together to create a collection that is just as sophisticated as it is fun.
“Iris is a cultural icon that the Grandin Road customer admires,” says president Jason Jones. “Her ability to look at the world for inspiration, find beauty everywhere, and bring it fearlessly together is the very definition of creativity.”
Taking cues from vintage Italian designs and Indian art, a rattan elephant console table ($799) is cheeky and whimsical—the perfect bar cart for the hostess who is both stylish and has a sense of humor. Bright accent pieces include a chic green demilune chest ($499) that is accessorized with vintage-inspired handles and tassels.
With a background in fabric design (she and her husband Carl ran the textile company Old World Weavers for 42 years), the textiles in Apfel’s latest collection marry luxurious fibers with funky patterns and cheery colors.
“I like a variety of texture—velvet mixed with some Mongolian lamb. It gives a really super texture to the whole thing,” Apfel says. “And I love colors that are cheerful, and of different tonalities.”
Throughout her new line, Apfel’s Haitian animal motif is executed in creative ways—think glam black and gold snakeskin wine goblets ($59) and martini glasses ($59), and irreverent black animal feet candlesticks ($99).
Apfel’s cheeky philosophical statements (think “More is more, Less is bore”) are printed on pillows, dessert plates and framed artwork. “That is my creed,” she says. “It’s just the way I feel about things.”
The collection is glamorous, yet comfortable—just like Apfel’s iconic style: The starlet is known for elevating a pair of denim jeans and comfy sequined loafers with a fabulous fur coat.
Apfel, who says she doesn’t have any rules or regulations for styling herself or her home, advises home decorators to do whatever feels right. “Go with your instinct and know who you are. Don’t follow trends,” she says. “Buy what is you, and what your family is going to enjoy. And be experimental.”
And this isn't the designer's first foray into home decor, either: In December, Apfel released a circus-inspired furniture line through HSN, and the e-tailer also currently sells her clothing and jewelry collection Rara Avis (Latin for “rare bird”).
Earlier this week, on March 6, her latest book, Iris Apfel: Accidental Icon, was released as well. “It’s just musings,” says Apfel. “A little bit of everything. People fortunately seem to be liking it, so I’m very gladdened.”
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