Iconic Fashion Designer Lilly Pulitzer Passes Away at 81
The fashion world is mourning the loss of the legendary designer, Lilly Pulitzer, who died at the age of 81 on Sunday, April 7 at her house in Palm Beach, Florida. According to a statement on her company's official Facebook page, Lilly "passed away peacefully" and was "surrounded by family and loved ones."
"Lilly has been a true inspiration to us and we will miss her," read the statement. "In the days and weeks ahead we will celebrate all that Lilly meant to us. Lilly was a true original who has brought together generations through her bright and happy mark on the world."
Gale Schiffman of Quattlebaum Funeral and Cremation Services also confirmed the death but she said she didn't know what caused the death. Lilly is survived by her three children from her former marriage with Peter Pulitzer: Peter, Minnie, and Liza.
Born Lillian McKim, Lilly attended a school in Farmington, Connecticut where the future first lady, Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis, was among her classmates. In 1950, Lilly married Peter, the grandson of newspaper mogul Joseph Pulitzer.
Being a wife to a rich husband who owned orange groves, Lilly spent her days behind the juice stand she opened in 1959. However, she always spilled the juice on her clothes and later she tried to find a way of camouflaging the fruit stain. She asked her seamstress to make some sleeveless dresses in colorful fruit prints, and a fashion staple was born.
In the same year, she launched her fashion company and her design became popular when in 1960, Jacqueline was photographed wearing one of the sleeveless colorful dresses in a magazine.
Lilly and Peter got divorced in 1962. She got married to Enrique Rousseau shortly after, and changed her name to Lillian McKim Rousseau while her clothing company continued to operate under the "Lilly Pulitzer" label. She had no kid from her marriage with Enrique who died in 1993 from cancer.
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