More than fifty years ago, a wave of bright, bold and unique
prints in the form of pink monkeys dancing, green elephants
swimming and flowers blooming in rainbow colors hit the
American fashion scene. It all started when Lilly Pulitzer,
a young, New York
socialite, opened a juice stand in
Palm Beach in the 1950s. The citrus
stains that splashed upon her clothing inspired her to
create brightly colored designs to help camouflage those
stains. These designs ultimately became the unofficial
uniform for the affluent, and Lilly’s signature pink and
green colors emerged as the banner of the authentic Palm Beach lifestyle. In 1959, Lilly became
president of her own fashion company Lilly Pulitzer, Inc.
Born Lillian McKim in Roslyn, New York
she married Peter Pulitzer of the famous Pulitzer Prize
family. The family settled in
Palm Beach where
a free-spirited Lilly Pulitzer operated a juice stand using
produce from a citrus grove owned by the family.
The initial style of
the Lilly clothing designs were simple shift dresses that
appealed to a wealthy client base that included Lilly’s
boarding school friend Jacqueline Bouvier Kennedy.
And others who wore the Lilly designs were various
descendants of the Gilded-age titans that included the
Rockefellers, Vanderbilts and Whitneys.
Because the Lilly style was so strongly associated with
blue-blood high society, Lilly Pulitzer became known as the
“Queen of Prep”.
Lilly Pulitzer, Inc.
thrived with more than 30 stores eventually offering wares
for children, men and the home until the company closed its
doors in 1984. The fashion line re-emerged again in 1992
when the rights were purchased by Sugartown Worldwide, Inc.
The LILLY exhibit is
being organized and developed by the Museum
of Lifestyle & Fashion History and is scheduled to be on
August 3, 2010 thru May 31, 2011 at the donated location
Museum of Lifestyle & Fashion History at the Boynton Beach
in Boynton Beach, Florida. The exhibit will include various
educational programs about design.
Owners of Lilly items
are invited to loan their vintage Lilly clothes,
accessories, home furnishings and photos for display in the
If anyone would like
to loan vintage Lilly items for display, they need to mail
or e-mail a brief list of their Lilly items to
or mail to Museum of Lifestyle & Fashion History at
P.O. Box 6127,
Delray Beach, FL 33482. Deadline to respond to the Call
is April 30, 2010. For more information, call 561-243-2662.
presently on display at MLFH are Barbie®: The Golden
Anniversary and Fashion Treasures from the Museum’s
Permanent Archival & Artifact Collection.
About Museum of Lifestyle & Fashion History
The Museum of Lifestyle &
Fashion History is a non-profit 501(c) 3 history museum that
was established in 1999.
The inspiration for the
Museum of Lifestyle & Fashion History of Delray Beach was
the phenomenally successful popular culture & retrospective
exhibit "40 Years of the Barbie® Doll" in celebration of
Women's History Month which was on display from March
1999 thru September 2000 in
Delray Beach, Florida.
Mattel, Inc, loaned from their archives to Durante nearly 80
Barbie® dolls for display in the exhibit. More than 20,000
visitors from around the world attended this exhibit which
made it the #1 attended exhibit in the history of
and one of the most memorable Museum exhibits in all of Palm Beach County. The Barbie® Doll exhibit was
conceived and curated by Lori J. Durante who is the
Executive Director/Chief Curator of the Museum of Lifestyle
& Fashion History.
The Museum of
Lifestyle & Fashion History (MLFH) has been raising monies
to acquire property for a proposed museum facility for the
purpose of presenting permanent and traveling exhibits. The
Museum of Lifestyle & Fashion History has been the only
museum in Palm Beach County approved to host traveling exhibits
from the Smithsonian Institution. When the Museum was
located in the donated space in a shopping center in
downtown Delray Beach a number of exhibits from the
Smithsonian were hosted. That shopping center has been sold
and demolished for redevelopment. A building is very much
needed by the Museum to once again bring exhibitions to this
area from the Smithsonian as well as artifacts from around
the world. For the permanent building for the Museum, there
are many naming opportunities available as well as other
donation and sponsorship categories.
In 2009, MLFH opened
in a temporary donated 8,000 square feet facility at the
Boynton Beach Mall in Boynton Beach, FL. MLFH will be at this location for at
least three years while fundraising efforts still continue
for the permanent building.
The Museum of
Lifestyle & Fashion History is a non-profit museum that was
established in year 1999. The mission of the Museum is to
offer educational programs, and history and retrospective
anthropology exhibits showcasing lifestyle, cultures,
people, places, fashion trends, clothes, architecture,
furnishings, decorative arts, interior designs, locomotives
and toys, and information about popular uses of artifacts by
people/events of various periods of time. The goal of the
Museum's mission is to collect and preserve objects and
artifacts that relate to the Museum’s mission; provide
educational & cultural arts programs for children, families,
the general public and the economically disadvantage; and
the goal is to enhance tourist attractions and the economy
of the area.