Elsie de Wolfe (1865-1950) was an American interior decorator and a prominent figure in New York, Paris, and London society. During her married life, the press usually referred to her as Lady Mendl. She began her professional career in theatre, making her debut as an actress in Sardou's Thermidor in 1891, playing the role of Fabienne with Forbes-Robertson. In 1894 she joined the Empire Stock Company under Charles Frohman. In 1901 she brought out The Way of the World under her own management at the Victoria Theatre, and later she toured the United States with this play. In 1913 she published her influential book The House in Good Taste. In 1926 The New York Times described de Wolfe as "one of the most widely known women in New York social life, " and in 1935 as "prominent in Paris society. " American Decades opines that "she was probably the first woman to dye her hair blue, to perform handstands to impress her friends, and to cover eighteenth-century footstools in leopard-skin chintzes. "