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Palm Beach  Society News  Pages 1 
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Black Tie International:
The Preppy American Brunch

Lilly Pulitzer Rousseau (Center) with sisters Abbey (back row) and Katie Kerl (front), Willow Moffett (front) and Lori J. Durante (right) at The Preppy American Brunch hosted at the Museum of Lifestyle & Fashion History.  Photo by:  Lucien Capehart Photography


 Lilly Pulitzer Rousseau (Center) with sisters Abbey (back row) and Katie Kerl (front), Willow Moffett (front) and Lori J. Durante (right) at The Preppy American Brunch hosted at the Museum of Lifestyle & Fashion History Photo by:  Lucien Capehart Photography





Preppies Got Prepped-Up for

The Preppy American Brunch

that celebrated the 80th Birthday of Lilly Pulitzer Rousseau

Fete was a Sold-Out Success at the
 Museum of Lifestyle & Fashion History!




The famed preppy resort fashion designer Lilly Pulitzer Rousseau is now a proud octogenarian. To celebrate Rousseau’s significant milestone of turning 80 years old, the Museum of Lifestyle & Fashion History in Boynton Beach, Florida hosted on Saturday, November 12, 2011, The Preppy American Brunch. The event was chaired by Lilly Ambassador Mary Lane.

Preppies got prepped-up in a sea of pastel colors for Lilly’s Birthday brunch. The fete was hosted under a white tent accented with potted palm trees located at the Museum of Lifestyle & Fashion History.

The all-you-can-eat buffet brunch was cooked by one of Lilly’s favorite restaurant’s Toojay’s Original Gourmet Deli. David Lerner & Associates sponsored the gourmet coffee and lattes that were served-up by Coffee on Call.

There was informal modeling of Lilly fashions from C.Orrico in Delray Beach. And Ms. Lilly P. really loved the special violin serenade by 8 year-old Willow Moffett. 10 year-old Katie Kerl read a poem for Lilly Pulitzer Rousseau entitled Artist in the Sky written by Milla Antoinette Ravo. And, Katie and her sister Abbey both presented Lilly with two bouquets of flowers that were designed by Gerilyn Gianna Event & Floral Design. First grade students at Trinity Lutheran School in Delray Beach created handmade birthday cards for Lilly.

Preppy fashion designer Kiel James Patrick of Rhode Island led the birthday song for Lilly. And, Kiel James Patrick gifted each guest in attendance with his designer bracelets.

Janine Picone of Artfully Baked created sweet Pink and Green cupcakes. The Butter Pecan Tartlettes were provided by
Bonnie’s Best Bites

Committee members Barbara Malone and Lisa Stuart led the coordination of the Preppy-themed silent auction and raffle. The musical backdrop was soothing jazz music by Michael Kennedy.

Premiering at the brunch was the Museum’s new Pink & Green-themed Christmas tree decorated by Skyler Carosella who is a student at Lynn University in Boca Raton, Florida.

The 100 pink and green wearing Lilly-clad guests in attendance traveled miles to celebrate Lilly’s birthday. Birthday well-wishers came from Connecticut, Rhode Island, New York, Texas, Pennsylvania, Maryland, Atlanta, New York; and in Florida they traveled from Tampa, Gainesville and Orlando.

The Museum of Lifestyle & Fashion History’s feature exhibit is an ode to Lilly’s namesake fashions. The exhibit originally premiered as For the Love of LILLY has now been changed to The Queen of Prep: Lilly Pulitzer Rousseau. And, due to popular demand the exhibit has been extended to November 2012. The Queen of Prep has been organized and developed by the Museum of Lifestyle & Fashion History and curated by Lori J. Durante. The history showcase features more than 80 vintage Lilly Pulitzer clothes, accessories and original fabric. To date, more than 20 collectors from throughout the USA and the State of Florida have provided their vintage Lilly for the exhibit. Some collectors are from Cincinnati, Ohio; San Francisco, California; Shingle Springs, California; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; as well as from cities in Florida such as Orlando, Lake Worth, West Palm Beach; Boca Raton; Boynton Beach; Delray Beach; Hillsboro Beach; Pompano Beach; Fort Lauderdale; Parkland and Miami.

The Preppy American Brunch also helped to raise awareness about the Museum of Lifestyle & Fashion History’s capital campaign to raise monies for a proposed 93,000 square feet state-of-the-art permanent building that will include a permanent gallery dedicated to Lilly Pulitzer Rousseau.


Sponsors, to date, Mary Lane, Barbara Malone, Lisa Stuart, Bonnie’s Best Bites, Patricia Ann Ravo Fund, Boris & Edith Rueger Fund, Chuck West, David Lerner & Associates, the Simon Property Group, Karen Lee, Abbey Portrait Studio, US 1 AC Self Storage, Master Cuts at Boynton Beach Mall and M.A.C Cosmetics at Macy's-Boynton Beach Mall. Sponsorship opportunities are
 still available.


Museum of Lifestyle & Fashion History

801 N. Congress Avenue, Suite 483

Boynton Beach Mall (inside Mall in North Wing of Mall)

Boynton Beach, FL 33426



About the Preppy Brunch Honoree: Lilly Pulitzer Rousseau:

Ms. Lilly Pulitzer Rousseau is a resident on the island of Palm Beach and a Florida icon. During her fashion career, Pulitzer was proclaimed the "Queen of Prep" because of her fashion line’s popularity as resort wear that was primarily worn by Preppy Americans who vacationed in wealthy locales like Palm Beach, Florida; Nantucket, Martha’s Vineyard and Cape Cod, to name a select few.

Born in Roslyn, New York, Lillian Lee McKim Pulitzer Rousseau (nicknamed Lilly) was named for her mother Lillian Stokes Bostwick McKim Phipps; and her grandmother Mary Lillian Stokes Bostwick. Lilly’s great-grandfather was Jabez Abel Bostwick and he was a founding partner and first Treasurer of the Standard Oil Company. Because of Lilly’s great-grandfather’s oil investments, this branch of the New York Bostwick family rose to prominence and became one of the wealthiest families in America. Lilly was afforded education at the most prestigious schools: Chapin, Miss Porter’s School and in 1949 she was enrolled at The Finch School, (a finishing school for women of wealthy families) in New York City. After three-months, Lilly dropped-out of Finch to become a nurse’s aid at the Kentucky Frontier Nursing Service.

In 1952, when Lilly Pulitzer eloped and married Peter Pulitzer, her noble standing was cemented again because Peter was the grandson of famed newspaper publisher Joseph Pulitzer.

Lilly and Peter settled in the Town of Palm Beach where a free-spirited Lilly Pulitzer operated a juice stand using produce from a citrus grove in Fort Pierce, Florida owned by the family. The juice stand was located in a tiny shop in Via Mizner located right off Worth Avenue in the Town of Palm Beach, FL.

Lilly Pulitzer tells the story like this in her Essentially Living book about how it all happened in 1959: “there was this little juice and fruit bar in the back right here. I would slice the oranges and squeeze the fruit to make the juice. But, boy, was it messy. At the end of the day I was covered in pulp and dribbles of orange juice. I had to do something. I used to have this wonderful Swiss lady make shifts for me. I found this bright, bright fabric, the same colors as the fruit, so that the splashes and mess wouldn’t show. People would say, ‘Oh, they’re great. Why don’t you have them in the shop?’ So I went down to Woolworth’s, got some fabric and had twelve dresses made for me, and I had just hung them haphazardly around the store. This was the early sixties. The Kennedy’s were down here; Jack had just been elected President. The eyes of the whole world were on Palm Beach. Jackie wore one of my dresses – it was made from kitchen curtain material – and people went crazy. They took off like zingo. Everybody loved them, and I went into the dress business.”

Lilly established the company with her business partner Laura Robbins. In the very beginning stages of Lilly’s company, she contracted Key West Hand Print Fabrics in Key West, Florida to design and print her fabrics used for the popular fashions. Her fashion business grew exponentially to an estimated $10 million in revenue and 450 employees that had a positive economic impact in the Town of Palm Beach, the Palm Beach County and the State of Florida that helped to create jobs along with defining an American Preppy look and imbedding the combination of pink and green as official colors of Palm Beach.

In October 1969, Lilly McKim Pulitzer added Rousseau to her last name when she married a Cuban businessman named
 Enrique Rousseau.

The Museum of Lifestyle & Fashion History is located inside the Boynton Beach Mall (inside Mall in north wing) at 801 N. Congress Avenue, Suite 483; Boynton Beach, FL 33426. For more information, call: 561-243-2662 or e-mail: Visit the Blog page Other current exhibits on display are Barbie: History, Fashion & More; and Fashion Treasures from the Museum’s Permanent Artifact & Fashion Collection.

For the Love of LILLY is not affiliated with the Lilly Pulitzer company/Sugartown Worldwide.

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 Delray Beach and one of the most memorable Museum exhibits in all of Palm Beach County, Florida. 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 was the first museum in Palm Beach County to be approved to host traveling exhibits from the Smithsonian Institution Traveling Exhibition Service. 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 year 2004, the Museum of Lifestyle & Fashion History,
was voted Best New Museum by the New Times Broward-
Palm Beach newspaper.

In 2009, MLFH opened in a 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 disadvantaged; and the goal is to enhance tourist attractions and the economy of the area.


Joyce Brooks

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