Lilly Pulitzer, a socialite turned fashion designer whose tropical print dresses became a sensation in the 1960s and later a fashion mainstay, died Sunday in Palm Beach, Fla. She was 81.
Her death was confirmed by Gale Schiffman of Quattlebaum Funeral and Cremation Services in West Palm Beach, Fla. The cause was unknown.
Pulitzer, who married into the famous newspaper family, got her start in fashion by spilling orange juice on her clothes. A rich housewife with time to spare and a husband who owned orange groves, she opened a Palm Beach juice stand in 1959 and asked her seamstress to make dresses in colorful prints that would camouflage fruit stains.