8 Apr 2013
It was with a heavy heart and nimble fingers that I slipped on my favorite “Lilly” frock this Sunday morning. After hearing that fashion legend, and “Palm Beach princess of prints” Lilly Pulitzer Rousseau ,81, had passed away, wearing anything else didn’t feel right. As I stood in my closet staring at the many brightly colored, tropical prints that I have collected over the years, I realized that few dresses have ever made me so happy to possess.
It wasn’t until I read about her death in The New York Times that I learned that the popularity of the wild patterns and bold colors that I love were a beautiful accident. Lilly Pulitzer’s cotton housedresses had originally been designed in 1959 to disguise potential citrus stains that might have occurred while Ms. Pulitzer was running a juice stand that she owned with her first husband Herbert Pulitzer, Jr., in Palm Beach. More than fifty years later, Lily Pulitzer‘s yearly sales surpass over $100 million, and the patterns that were meant to camouflage stains continue to be worn by the adventurous souls that desire nothing more than to stand out.
“I designed collections around whatever struck my fancy … fruits, vegetables, politics or peacocks,” Ms. Pulitzer told The Associated Press in 2009. “It was a total change of life for me, but it made people happy.” Ms. Pulitzer designed for the company until 1984, and continued to consult with the company until her death.
While the fashion world, and those of us at Los Angeles PR Firm, P3R mourn the loss of a style icon, who was more colorful than her clothing, we are reminded that, “Being happy never goes out of style.” (Lilly Pulitzer).
-Written by: Jordan Jennings