It is officially spring! YAY! For some of us this means its time to transition our wardrobe into brighter colors and bold prints. If this is you then you are in store for quite a treat. Here at Street Scene we have five beyond beautiful 1960s Lilly Pulitzer dresses. Whether you are a ‘Lilly girl’ or not these dresses are a slice of history and very easy to admire. For those of you that don’t know how Lilly came to be it’s actually quite a cute little story! So give it a read!
Born in the 1930’s as Lillian “Lilly” McKim. She eloped with Peter Pulitzer, Jr., the grandson of newspaper publisher Joseph Pulitzer and owner of several Florida orange groves in the 1950’s. The couple soon settled in Palm Beach, Florida, and had three children.
Lilly Pulitzer opened a juice stand using citrus from her husband’s grove. She soon found that making the juice was staining her clothes. Her solution was to design a shift-style dress made of bright, colorful prints that would hide those stains.
Customers kept asking about the dresses and soon they were more profitable than the orange juice. By 1959, she became president of her own company, Lilly Pulitzer, Inc., with a factory in Miami. It became a favorite line for women in the prestigious Rockefeller, Vanderbilt, and Whitney families. Her business really took off in 1962 when Jackie Kennedy was photographed in Capri with her sister, Lee Radziwell, wearing a polka-dot Lilly Pulitzer dress. Later that year, Mrs. Kennedy was photographed for Life Magazine with her husband and children, again wearing a Lilly dress in Hyannis Port.
Each year, Pulitzer introduced bright new colorful designs and added more than dresses. “I designed collections around whatever struck my fancy…fruits, vegetables, politics, or peacocks!” she said. She began opening stores across the country and department stores also carried the line. One of her favorite sayings was, “Anything is possible with sunshine and a little pink.” More than one book described her as the “Queen of Prep.”
Until next time