Fashion Icon Passes Away At 102

Fashion has lost one of its most vibrant and iconic figures as Iris Apfel, the self-proclaimed ‘geriatric starlet’ and renowned fashion icon, passed away at the remarkable age of 102. The news of her demise was solemnly conveyed through her official Instagram account, accompanied by a striking image capturing her in a regal black and gold gown, adorned with her distinctive black glasses – a signature style that defined her persona for decades.

Born on August 29, 1921, Iris Barrel Apfel’s journey through life was nothing short of extraordinary. Her indomitable spirit and unapologetic approach to fashion captured the hearts of millions worldwide. She breathed her last on March 1, 2024, in the comfort of her Palm Beach, Florida, residence, leaving behind a legacy that transcends generations.

Throughout her illustrious career, Iris Apfel carved a niche for herself as a New York style maven, celebrated for her bold and eclectic fashion sense. Her ensembles, characterized by chunky bracelets, layered necklaces, and those iconic heavy-framed glasses, exuded a sense of confidence and individuality that resonated with people of all ages.

It wasn’t until 2005, however, that Apfel’s meteoric rise to global fame began, when the Metropolitan Museum of Art curated an exhibition solely dedicated to her unique fashion sensibilities, aptly titled Rara Avis (Rare Bird). The showcase not only solidified her status as a fashion icon but also introduced her unparalleled style to a wider audience, cementing her place in the annals of fashion history.

Despite achieving widespread recognition relatively late in life, Apfel continued to defy conventional norms and push boundaries well into her later years. At the age of 97, she ventured into the realm of modeling, becoming the face of prestigious brands like Vogue Italia, Kate Spade, and M.A.C. Cosmetics. Her age-defying career trajectory shattered ageist stereotypes, inspiring countless individuals to embrace their uniqueness and pursue their passions regardless of age.

In a testament to her enduring influence, Iris Apfel holds the distinction of being the oldest person to have a Barbie doll fashioned in her likeness by the renowned toy company Mattel. The Barbie doll, a symbol of her indelible impact on the fashion world, serves as a tangible reminder of her timeless allure and cultural significance.

Following the announcement of her passing, an outpouring of tributes flooded social media, with fans and celebrities alike expressing their profound admiration and respect for the legendary fashion icon. Among them, Maria Shriver hailed Apfel’s remarkable achievements across various domains, underscoring her multifaceted talents and unwavering spirit. Similarly, musician Lenny Kravitz paid homage to her legacy, acknowledging her unparalleled zest for life and boundless creativity.

Actress Hannah Waddingham also joined the chorus of voices commemorating Apfel’s legacy, reminiscing about the joy and inspiration she brought to countless lives through her fearless approach to fashion and unwavering commitment to authenticity.

As the fashion world mourns the loss of one of its most iconic figures, Iris Apfel’s legacy serves as a timeless reminder of the transformative power of self-expression and the enduring impact of embracing one’s unique identity. Though she may have bid farewell to this world, her spirit lives on through the indelible mark she left on the hearts and minds of fashion enthusiasts worldwide. Iris Apfel may have departed, but her legacy as a true fashion trailblazer will continue to inspire generations to come.