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Lilly: Palm Beach, Tro...
Kathryn Livingston
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Lilly: Palm Beach, Tropical Glamour, and the Birth of a Fashion Legend

3.32  ·  Rating Details ·  149 Ratings  ·  27 Reviews
The real story behind a very private American fashion icon—Lilly PulitzerToday, Lilly Pulitzer's iconic brand of clean-cut, vibrantly printed clothes called "Lillys" can be spotted everywhere. What began decades ago as a snob uniform in Palm Beach became a general fashion craze and, later, an American classic. In contrast to the high visibility of her brand, Lilly Pulitzer ...more
ebook, 256 pages
Published September 24th 2012 by John Wiley & Sons
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(showing 1-30)
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Dec 26, 2012 Bridget rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
As a Lilly lover, I looked forward to reading about the legend behind the popular, preppy Lilly Pulitzer brand. It was quite disappointing to find this book light on Lilly McKim Pulitzer. Rather than focus on Ms. Pulitzer, the author dished on the history of the Palm Beach social scene and it's origins; there was a lot of jumping around from heir to socialite to playboy with a limited back story and very little substance about the Lilly Pulitzer brand or Ms. Pulitzer's background. I'd say about ...more
Jan 01, 2013 Jules rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Loved the parts about Lilly, but the author spent way too much time focusing on people who had absolutely nothing to do with her life.
Lauren Cline
Jan 07, 2014 Lauren Cline rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Lilly: Palm Beach, Tropical Glamour, and the Birth of a Fashion Legend tells the life story of Lilly Pulitzer and her amazing company. This book goes into details of the lives of Lilly herself and the people she surrounded herself with. It describes the high life of Palm Beach and gives a close up on Palm Beach society. It traces the many ups-and-downs in Lilly Pulitzer's personal life as well as her business. It also gives insight on the decline of the business in the 1980's before its resurgen ...more
Leanne Schneider
May 03, 2015 Leanne Schneider rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I'm not enjoying this as much I hoped I would. It's less a biography about Lilly and more a biography about every rich & famous society person in American from the late 1800's, through the decades. And how they are all connected to each other and to Lilly. The author could've just drawn a flow-chart for that...and then wrote a book about Lilly. I get the feeling that the author does not know her subject at all and therefore is filling in space by talking about all those other people. She cou ...more
Natasja Holben Handy
Pretty dull, unfortunately. And surprisingly vapid, for a book based on someone who seemed so unconcerned with high society.
Jan 30, 2017 Ellen rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Like many others who have reviewed this book, I also marked it down in rating because of the tangents the author goes on about things that aren't essential to Lilly's story. Her purpose is to give the reader an idea of the inter-connectedness of the American elite, to explain the history of Palm Beach and its social scene, and the aristocratic family histories of Lilly and important figures in her life. As a historian, I did find some of this to be interesting. However, the author jumps from Lil ...more
Mar 05, 2014 Andrea rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I loved learning about my favorite fashion designer, Lilly Pulitzer, and her glamorous lifestyle. This book taught me a lot about business initiatives, creativity, and the immense wealth concentrated in Palm Beach, FL. There were grammar errors throughout the book, and sometimes the author went off on tangents that were irrelevant to the central topic. Too much name dropping, not enough direct quotes or personal anecdotes. But it was a pleasurable read and I would recommend it to anyone who wear ...more
Sarah Katherine
I learned so much about Lilly so I really appreciated that info but agree with other reviewers that the author goes off on very long, detailed tangents about other people who don't really have anything to do with this story and their whole backgrounds. I listened to audiobook so I couldn't just skim (and the audiobook narrated wasn't the best to listen to either-slightly high pitched and not a lot of inflection.)
But overall I'm happy to have read it to know more about Lilly. I never would have k
Interesting read on Lilly Pulitzer that focuses heavily on the social relationships of Palm Beach as much as the accidental development of her brand Lilly. Touches on the initial break out of the Lilly shift, the socialites that wore it, middle americans wanting to emulate the upper-crust look, the demise of the brand, and one, if not the most successful brand come this century. At it's height in the 80's Lilly garnered 15 million, in 2008 the brand generated over $100 million, and is now owned ...more
Candace Rollins
This biography of Lily McKim Pulitzer made for light reading. It chronicles the life of a very wealthy heiress and her somewhat serendipitous entree into the world of fashion. The book did a good job of presenting the history and connections of the "Gatsby" like lives of the Palm Beach ultra rich.As an admirer of the line I enjoyed reading about it's history.

Unfamiliar word

pg. 31 Coterie: an exclusive group that shares similar interests
Jan 02, 2014 Sara rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Too much Social Register, not enough Lilly! This book was a hot mess, disorganized, distracted, one dimensional. There are literally pages and pages listing people's stories pedigrees who have nothing to do with Lilly, then, at the end of the book it is casually mentioned that: oh, remember Lilly's favorite sister? She committed suicide 30 yrs ago! Shame on the editor.
Liked learning a little more about Lilly and the history of the company.

However, I got lost in the minute details of family trees and the social scene in Palm Beach. I picked this up because I wanted to know about the woman, her inspirations, the ups and downs of her business. I got some of that, but not enough.

Joyce Gomes
Jan 05, 2013 Joyce Gomes rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Fascinating read, provides a rich history and a riveting tour of the life styles of the pioneers that made the resort of Palm Beach. Kathryn Livingston did a phenomenal job in researching every fact to ensure the history of the era was true and concise. Lilly Pulitzer proves that hard work and determination are the right ingredients for success.
Sep 07, 2013 Ann rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
A bio of Lilly Pulitzer that does give you a look at her life, but also spends a lot of time
describing her friends lives, her schools, her home in Palm Beach. Gives you well rounded look
at the fashion icon. Can't help but thinking that the author was a little enamored of Lilly and
her world, though. A bit biased about it all.
Dec 26, 2012 Amy rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book is much more about private school life and the social scenes of Palm Beach and other northern playgrounds than Lilly's own life. The writing can be wordy at times with odd sentence structure, as I would have to re-read to understand what the author was trying to say. Still worth a read for any Lilly fan.
Dec 15, 2012 Joyce rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Fun to read! Lilly McKim Pulitzer and her contemporaries live(d) a life so totally outside my existence that it was like reading about unicorns! I'd actually heard of the "Lillys", the little dresses that she started selling in Palm Beach, and that's why I picked up the book. A very quick read and, for me, more enlightening about the High Society folk than about fashion. Enjoyed it.
Maureen Flatley
May 22, 2013 Maureen Flatley rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Gosh, I love Lilly......whether as a style icon or business woman, Lilly was a trailblazer and role model for us all. This is a great and very readable book about her family and her life. If you love Lilly, you'll love it.
Was great reading about Lilly's life and hearing about how she started her business. Also loved how everyone in her life was interconnected. Thought though that a large chunk of the tangents by the author weren't relevant for Lilly's story.
As an avid Lilly fan, I was hoping to learn more about the designer herself. While the book was interesting, I felt that I learned more about the background of her family and the history of Palm Beach instead of gaining insight into the life of this fascinating designer.
Apr 14, 2013 Alyssa rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I bought this book just to add to my collection of Lilly books but it was terrible - poorly written, choppy, and repetitive are just a few thoughts I had during the first three chapters. Unless you need some pink and green for your bookshelf save your money!
Apr 24, 2014 Dana rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I still love Lilly, but was disappointed in this book. It read more of a magazine article on palm beach society than a real understanding of Lilly. I didn't learn anything new and felt disappointed by that.
Truthfully, a little dull.
Jun 18, 2015 Trina rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
As others have noted, "Lilly" has very little to do with Lilly --- maaaybe 20% of the book is devoted to her. Because I live within 5 miles of Palm Beach, I thought it was interesting.
Apr 14, 2013 Christina rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
So unfulfilling! Too much about the people around her and not nearly enough Lilly.
Linda Cuttone
This book was a little slow. I wanted more of her design company story and it was a lot of the social life of Palm Beach. But the little bit of Lilly's design life was interesting.
Louanne Caspar
Quick, light read.
Jan 02, 2013 Hannah rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
An interesting story, horribly written.
Leslie Skinner
Leslie Skinner rated it liked it
Nov 20, 2012
Quinn rated it really liked it
Mar 13, 2013
Teresa Shrader
Teresa Shrader rated it really liked it
Jun 02, 2014
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Kathryn E. Livingston has been writing about parenting issues for more than twenty-five years; recently, she’s turned her pen to the topic of yoga.

Livingston blogs for the Huffington Post on seasoned motherhood and empty-nest issues, and for the Kundalini yoga music website Spirit Voyage, and her work appears in the popular online yoga magazine Elephant Journal. She is a supporting blogger for Dr.
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