Posts Tagged: Lilly Pulitzer



Courtesy of Lilly Pulitzer
“If you haven’t any charity in your heart, you have the worst kind of heart trouble,” said Lilly Pulitzer, legendary dress designer, rebellious socialite, entrepreneur, trendsetter, rule breaker and hostess extraordinaire.
The famous story begins, “It all started with a juice stand.  When 21 year old Lilly eloped with Peter Pulitzer, they escaped the hustle and bustle of New York City for the sun and sand of Palm Beach. In the shadow of her husband’s family’s citrus groves, Lilly opened a juice stand.  To disguise the juice stains on her clothing, she had a sleeveless dress made from colorfully-printed cotton.”
Lilly was a true pioneer.  She had a very privileged, yet restricted upbringing and wanted to experience life to the fullest. While her other friends were getting married and being introduced to society, Lilly worked for the Frontier Nurses Service in Kentucky, and as nurse’s aide at the Veterans’ Hospital in the Bronx. After she eloped as a very young age, she chose the unconventional path of becoming an entrepreneur which was highly uncommon for women during the 1950s. Lilly always lived by the adage to “Treat a duke like a dustman and and a dustman like a duke.”
Lovely Ladies in Lilly, circa 1964
Photo by Slim Aarons

The Lilly label happened somewhat accidentally and everyone fell in love with the shift dress that was comfortable, fun and flirty, just like Lilly herself.  When her classmate Jackie Kennedy appeared in Life magazine wearing one of Lilly’s creations, the brand become more popular than ever.

In the book Essentially Lilly, she is described as “loved by all, not for whom she is, but how she lives-with gusto, generosity and a never-ending sense of fun.”

In honor of this delightful spirit , the Mint Museum Auxiliary is continuing the Room to Bloom tradition by celebrating all things Palm Beach.  The festivities begin on Wednesday, April 25th and continue through Friday, May 18th. All proceeds from the fundraiser enable the Mint Museum to enhance its educational programs and acquire new works of art for the permanent collection.

One of the highlights of this year’s Room to Bloom Celebration is Evening Under the Palms. The committee has teamed up with Presenting Sponsors Belk,Inc and Lilly Pulitzer to create a magical Palm-Beach inspired event. See the invitation below for more details of the evening…

Please join us!
For reservations, email
Guests are encouraged to dress
Photo by Slim Aarons/ Getty Images
Photo by Slim Aarons/ Getty Images
Vogue Magazine Ad
circa 1971
 The evening includes cocktails, dinner, and dancing to the sounds of Hot Sauce
Painting by a Lilly artist
The Lilly Jeep
Lilly Pulitzer has donated their new
Mariposa Fabric for the Decor
Lilly artists will be on hand to create a painting
to be donated to the Mint Museum
Guests will receive a complimentary raffle ticket to win
this Lilly Pulitzer beach cruiser
House Beautiful

In quintessential Lilly style, the brand has now expanded to include everything from tabletop and stationary to designer fabrics, high end furniture and upholstery. It is easy to understand why the Lilly brand is so attractive.  She elevated the art of living well and made it accessible to everyone. The way Lilly described her clothes applies to all of her products; “These clothes make people happy. You feel happy wearing a bright color. It makes you smile.  And who does not want to smile a little bit more these days?”

Photo from Lee Jofa

For more information on Lilly fabrics featured by Lee Jofa, please see my friend and fellow designer Holly Phillips’ wonderful blog  Musings of a Design Aficionado (The English Room).

I would have loved to have lived in Palm Beach during the 1960s and attended some of Lilly’s legendary parties. They were known for their eclectic guests, lively music, fabulous food (prepared by the hostess herself!), and dancing everywhere-in the kitchen, by the pool, on the beach, on the cocktail table, wherever the party ended up.

I cannot wait to grab my vintage Lilly shift, put my husband in some patchwork Lilly pants and dance the night away at Evening Under the Palms all for a wonderful charity….I think Lilly would definitely approve!


Here are a few favorites from High Point’s Fall Furniture Market.  Any of these can add some much needed flair to any interior…

Gossip Chair by Oomph

1. Oomph was one of our favorite lines at High Point. Along with the Gossip Chair above, all of their tables, mirrors, and lanterns in lacquered finishes would give any room an extra punch of personality.

Wallpapers by Jonathan Adler

2. Anything by Jonathan Adler  puts a smile on my face.  His new line of wallpapers does not disappoint. You gotta love a designer that has his own Manifesto including such truisms like “We believe that when it comes to decorating, the wife is ALWAYS right, unless the husband is gay.” and  “We believe in Palm Beach Style: Louis chairs, Chinoiserie, Lilly Pulitzer, The Breakers circa ’72.”

Cocktail Table by Chelsea Editions Furniture

3.Chelsea Textiles  has always been known for their embroidered fabrics and needlework pillows.  Now they have introduced a Mid Century Modern Furniture line that includes side tables, desks, chairs and cocktail tables like the one pictured above.  The colors range from teal to raspberry and everything in between.

Zig Zag Side Table by Festoni

4.  We discovered Festoni for the first time a couple of years ago in High Point.  Since then, their booth is always a must see every time we visit. Their linen wrapped and lacquered pieces come in a range of colors from chocolate to poppy.  They have cocktail, bedside and game tables along with chests and consoles.

Color Palette for Lilly Pulitzer for HFI Brands

5. Speaking of Lilly Pulitzer, HFI Brands launched her eponymous furniture line this summer.  The palette of colors is above and the pieces themselves are stunning. Even though the pieces have a retro flair about them, they would work in almost any interior with the appropriate finish and fabric.

Wing chair by Lilly Pulitzer for HFI Brands
Scroll Cocktail Table by Lilly Pulitzer for HFI Brands
Mirrored Console by Bungalow 5

6. Bungalow 5 ‘s booth gets “Best in Show” for styling.  All of their pieces looked fabulous against the cerulean blue walls.  Their new mirrored furniture line included Asian inspired consoles and vanities.

Diego Bed by Oly Studio

7. Oly Studio was another beautifully styled showroom. After looking at booth after booth of merchandise crammed into small spaces, it was heavenly to walk into their ethereal showroom. The murals on their walls should be featured in one of their upcoming ads. They set a beautiful backdrop for their furniture.  This bed above caught my eye.  It can come in a gilt, silver or bronze finish and reminded me of  a Giacometti sculpture.

Duffy Table by Made Goods

8. Madegoods has always been a favorite resource for mirrors and accessories.  This ceramic side table called “Duffy” reminded me of the Pierre Cardin furniture from the 1970s.


Turot prints from Natural Curiosities

9. One of my favorite designers from LA introduced me to Natural Curiosities last year.  I adore all of their Specimen, Graphic and Abstract Art.  For this collection, they took one of their Turot Geometric pieces(which used to be a Swiss educational aid)  and added color to the diagonals. These were introduced at market this Fall.


Etagere from BeeLine Home

10. This etagere was created by one my all time favorite designers and inspired by another.  Bunny Williams of  added this etagere her collection at BeeLine Home this year. It was inspired by a piece that Albert Hadley has in his New York apartment. Hadley’s bookcase was built in 1936 to commemorate the Olympics being held in Berlin.