I’d read press releases about Iris Apfel’s new home decor collection for Grandin Road but hadn’t had time to check it out on-line. So I could hardly contain my excitement when the catalog arrived in my mailbox and I saw my favorite nonagenarian on the cover, though way too small and in the corner.
Doesn’t GR know? Iris is like Baby–NO ONE puts her in a corner.
After taking a look, though, I feel like one of those balloons we used to blow up as kids, let go of, and watch it fly around the room until it dropped to the floor, dead and deflated.
To say Grandin Road’s Iris Apfel collection is disappointing is an understatement. In spite of Apfel’s New York stomping grounds, this collection is more Palm Beach than Park Avenue. And not even the tony side of Palm. Possibly merely Floridian. I’d say “retiree Floridian” if I wasn’t of a certain age myself and that didn’t smack of distasteful stereotypes.
Is Iris losing it? I’ll let you mull that one over while I focus on the collection.
But first let’s look at Iris in her own digs…
…If only so you can see what Grandin Road’s interpretation of Iris Apfel is NOT.
These photos came from a 2016 Architectural Digest tour.
Iris is most definitely a maximalist.
She also has a quirky sense of humor–witness the Lucite jewelry you always see her photographed wearing, stashed in this kitschy doggy statue.
Without a doubt, she goes her own way, and what a way to go!
So you could call her boho. But boho with decidedly “extreme Victorian” overtones.
Witness her taste in art. You were expecting Warhol? Or de Kooning maybe? I thought perhaps Magritte, for the subtle humor, but no.
Now on to Grandin Road’s Iris home collection
A Chesterfield sofa in emerald green velvet is Iris-worthy, I’m thinking, but what’s up with the “sayings” pillow and art? I get that Iris is very quotable, but she’d have no sayings on her walls and pillows. She’d be living that dream OUT LOUD.
You can’t help but love the monkey, as well as the vibrant area rug he’s seated on. I can see this in her place, but the monkey would be holding a cool bowl filled with some of that chunky jewelry.
Ditto for the elephant console, though he’s a bit clumsy-looking, what with a head at both ends. (And probably doubly embarrassed by his $799 price tag!)
I could see the green demilune cabinet in her apartment (or my condo).
But most of the rest of the collection is not posh enough and not “out there” enough to be Iris Apfel.
In fact, the only area where superlatives fit is price.
Who really designed this?
Maybe the joke’s on us
Maybe Iris is getting a good laugh out of this. It’s the serving platter that gave it away for me.
That’s an ostrich on there–a weird choice since Iris would never stick her head in the sand. I can’t help but think turkey. Or if you go with the Florida theme, a black flamingo, or the offspring of a pink one who mated with a Canadian goose.
A rare bird, like Iris herself, though I see her more as a peacock or a lyrebird.
But a joke is what we get for not realizing Iris was a star all those years ago, long before her hair went white and she donned the crazy glasses.
I did manage a FEW likes from the collection…
Click on the photo links to check out items for yourself and make up your own mind.
If you want more…
- Check out all of Iris’ newest collection at Grandin Road. Any and every purchase is eligible for 15-percent off plus free shipping through the end of March. Just enter MARCHSHIP at checkout.
- Continue your tour of Apfel’s Park Avenue apartment at Architectural Digest.
- Get inspiring life lessons from the famous style icon at One Kings Lane.
- Explore her fashion collection for Macy’s, new in December 2017.
- Explore her fashion, accessories and home collection, Rara Avis, on HSN. Unfortunately, most of the home decor stuff, added to the existing collection of fashion and accessories in December 2017, is already sold out. But there’s lots of jewelry, as well as those famous glasses!
- “Rara Avis” translates rare bird and was originally the name of the 2005 exhibit about her at the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Costume Insitute. Follow the link to learn more about Apfel (if you’re not already familiar with her) and to read about the historic exhibit.