Iris Apfel On How To Develop Your Own Decorating Style

Leah Bourne
iris apfel 5 Iris Apfel On How To Develop Your Own Decorating Style

Photo Via StyleCaster/Jenny Anderson

There aren’t many fashion icons that are in the nineties, one of the prime exceptions being Iris Apfel. With her penchant for round glasses and lots (and lots) of jewelry, Apfel is a refreshing source of personal style in a sea of a lot of the same. No surprise here, Apfel, who has worked in interiors her whole life, also has an incredibly unique home decorating style.
Apfel, who has loads of home decor treasures, has decided to sell off some of her collection (over 800 items) via home decor e-commerce site One Kings Lane beginning April 5. Expect incredible finds from Paris, Marrakech, Santa Fe and more.
The style star, who refers to herself as a “geriatric starlet” chatted with Elle Decor about the sale, sharing some of her top tips for developing an interior design style all your own, along the way. Here, our favorite nuggets of advice from Apfel.
1. Buy what you like.
“Look for what pleases you,” Apfel advises of shopping for your home. “If you buy something and you’re not comfortable with wearing it or having it out, then it’s not for you.  I always tell everybody, being well dressed or having your home well decorated is a choice. If you have to go through too much stress or aggravation or too much this or that… then, forget it! It’s better to be happy than to be chic. You just need to relax. There are no fashion police that are going to carry you away!”
2. Develop your own sense of style. 
“I haven’t been interested in an interior designer in a long, long time,” Apfel says, suggesting to stay away from copying what everyone else is doing. “Everything looks the same—if I could tell you the truth! I can’t say that I don’t see new pretty things here and there, but mostly it’s all boring as far as I am concerned. You can’t tell who lives in any of these apartments. They’re like divine hotel suites.”
3. Don’t be afraid to try new things.
Apfel got her husband into collecting antiques. “We’ve been married 66 years—it’s a long time! At the beginning, when we were first married, he wanted everything new. He would act like a spoiled brat when I passed an antique shop. He would say, ‘I don’t want to go in! I don’t want anyone else’s old troubles!’ But, once we got established he started to love it.” The takeaway? Don’t be afraid to try things outside of your comfort zone.
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