A Tribute to Iris Apfel and Colour

Day to Day

Join us as we celebrate Iris Apfel and the life of this 102-year-old inspirational designer and her tribute to colour...

In the world of fashion and design, few personalities have left such a lasting mark as the wonderful Iris Apfel. We were all saddened by the news of her passing last weekend; her iconic oversized glasses, eclectic wardrobe, and unapologetically bold approach to style, was a testament to the world of design. Join us as we celebrate the life of this 102-year-old inspirational designer and her tribute to colour.

Iris Apfel’s journey in design was a celebration of the unconventional. From her early days as an interior decorator to her later years as a fashion icon, Apfel consistently rejected conformity. Her unique style was a canvas of colour, texture, and pattern.

Whether in the realms of fashion or interior design, Apfel was renowned for her ability to seamlessly blend high-end pieces with more eclectic finds. Her groundbreaking 2005 exhibition at the Metropolitan Museum of Art thrust her into the spotlight in her eighties, showcasing her curated collections and underscoring the importance of storytelling in design – a principle we wholeheartedly embrace at our Design Studio, infusing our living spaces with personal and unexpected touches.

Apfel empowered us to embrace our individuality and unleash our creativity, demonstrating through her eclectic use of accessories how they can transform not just an outfit, but also a space, into a masterpiece of artistic expression – much like the captivating pieces on display at our newly unveiled Warren Street Hotel.

In 1948, Iris and her husband Carl Apfel embarked on a remarkable journey with the launch of Old World Weavers, a textile firm specialising in restoring and reproducing fabrics from past centuries. Notably, their projects included the restoration of pieces from the White House for nine different Presidents. Their dedication to preserving and appreciating the history of design, and the evolution of craftsmanship, serves as an enduring reminder of the timeless allure of heritage and tradition. In our hotels, we often repurpose found fabrics, imbuing each space with character and our passion for storytelling.

We hope you have enjoyed this tribute to the queen of colour, Iris, and are inspired to add a little colour to your home or wardrobe.

We will forever draw inspiration from Iris Apfel’s legacy and timeless wisdom, recognising that design is an ongoing narrative waiting to be told. Her fearless spirit encourages us to embrace curiosity, shun convention, and embrace bold colour choices, for as Iris herself famously declared, “Colour can raise the dead.”