I recently watched the Iris Apfel documentary on Netflix and pretty much fell in love with Iris Apfel’s personality, wit and style. Watch this trailer if you are unfamiliar with her. Then scroll below for more on how I put this Halloween tribute together.
A week before Halloween, I decided to do my very best to recreate one of Iris’ looks. As a crafter, and a mom of a three year old, you know that I have a drawer in my studio labeled “googly eyes” I started there.
Any cuff or bangle bracelets I owned and hadn’t worn in the last decade got a base spray with black Enamel Spray Paint.
(Side note, Testors Enamel paint had sent a couple bottles of enamel spray paint my way to make “something Halloweeny” earlier that month, and then our whole family was taken down by “Preschool plague” that lasted three solid weeks. It was gross, and being sick for that long, I was not really able to focus on a project. Until Iris came along and cradled me in her well accessorized arms…)
Iris wears bracelets all the way up to her elbows, and my meaty, Popeye forearms can only hold so many “normal-sized” bracelets, so I needed to get resourceful if I wanted to accessorize as thoroughly as the master herself. I thankfully own numerous (BIG) rolls of Duct Tape. After encrusting one in googly eyes with thick globs of Tacky glue, I decided that the look and fit of the tape roll was perfect. I took more nearly empty Duct Tape rolls and a roll of masking tape and spray painted them with the enamel paint as well. The enamel spray paint, no lie, gave everything a glossy luster and really classed up my tape accessories so much that I may wear them after Halloween. After letting the paint dry completely, I used more Tacky glue to adhere eyes onto each bracelet.
For the largest black bracelets, I took four paper bowl, and cut circles into the centers with an X-Acto knife. I used Tacky Glue to attach two bowls together; one set of bowls was glued bottom to bottom, one set was glued top to top. Then I used my black Testors enamel spray paint to give them an even coating. I loved these pieces so much. Wearing them made me feel like I was wearing armor. Stylish, artistic armor. Any other black or black and silver “chunky bracelets” I owned and didn’t want to alter, were added into the mix.
My smallest black beaded necklace was something I already owned. The thick black necklace was made by using one of my lucets and Patons yarn, but you could easily finger-weave a similar piece.
I made the large black bead necklace by stringing ping pong balls onto fishing line (thread a needle and this is easy as pie,) I then gave the necklace a few shots of enamel spray paint and the necklace that looks as though it would weigh five pounds ends up being light as a feather, while creating a big impact!
Finally, I picked up a white wig on Amazon, and some large round glasses on eBay. I paired them with a long white button up, skinny black slacks and flats.
It all came to together quickly and without any real snags. I was happy to be able to use the spray paint on so many surfaces and have everything come out looking shiny and polished (not too “crafty”.)
More than anything, I wanted to do Mrs. Iris Apfel justice. I hope that when I’m 95 I am as sharp as she is today!