Iril Apfel, you make me less scared of aging every time I see you! I’ve enjoyed Mrs. Apfel’s interviews and photos (via Manrepeller, Vogue, etc.), then I was reminded of the documentary, “Iris,” produced this year by director Albert Maysles (2015). If you love fashion, flair, wit, confidence, the cutest near centennial, and old couples in love, this documentary is for you.
I rented it on Apple Movies, sat myself on our living room floor with a bowl of popcorn. Does a bowl of popcorn sound like a half-hearted dinner or snack? Depends on the popcorn I guess, but at our house, it comes courtesy of the best popper, “Whirly Pop,” salted, then properly mixed with cheddar popcorn and kettle corn for a bowl of savory sweetness. This complex popcorn constitutes dinner.
And so happily munching, I entered Iris Apfel’s fantastical world, accompanied by her husband Carl, and eventually my husband too! Elton had been working on a few things around the house, but found himself increasingly drawn in by the documentary. Iris’ offhand comments are hilarious–the kind of things a person earns the right to say after a whimsical, hardworking life well-lived. Her interactions with Carl are entertainingly tender.
And then there’s her fashion advice. Take it from the woman who stacks chunky bangles, layers multicolored fabrics, and owns myriad pairs of the same, spunky spectacles in different shades:
I like to do things as if I’m playing jazz.
Here’s another mad outfit.
Color can raise the dead.
You have to be interested; if you’re not interested, you’re not interesting.
When you don’t dress like everyone else, you don’t have to think like everyone else.