Local store hosts Lilly Pulitzer fashion show to benefit The Symphony at WKU

Christian Marnon

Although fashion icon Lilly Pulitzer passed away recently, her legacy was perpetuated in Bowling Green with the opening of a brand new Lilly Pulitzer signature store and a subsequent fashion show on Tuesday.

Fans of the Pulitzer line gathered at Micki’s 440 on Main to watch and admire models strutting some of the brand’s ready-to-wear items available at Pink Daisy, the Bowling Green signature store.

Attendees of the show paid a $25 cover charge. WKU alumnus and store owner Dale Augenstein said the proceeds are going to The Symphony at WKU.

“There’s no aspect of WKU I don’t feel close to, whether it be athletics, the business school, or the arts,” he said. “We just did our thing with this fashion show and it was a wonderful opportunity to showcase the store and partner with the WKU symphony.”

Augenstein said he regrets Pulitzer’s passing, but believes her signature style will be preserved in future collections.

“Lilly’s vision of the store will remain fully intact,” he said. “The brand was sold in 1991, so she’s had some influence, but for the past 22 years the store has been under different ownership than Lilly and the brand has actually grown in stature.”

Last Thursday was technically the opening day for Pink Daisy, but Augenstein said it was a “soft opening” and ultimately a memorial service to Pulitzer.

“We will announce the official grand opening, which is happening very soon,” he said.

Kody Brown, a WKU graduate from Louisville and marketing director for Pink Daisy, said the new store is a breath of fresh air for Bowling Green.

“This is exactly what Bowling Green needed,” he said. “We are one of only 75 signature stores, so this a big deal for Bowling Green.”

He also said it is the first signature store to open in the wake of Pulitzer’s passing.

“It’s a great honor to have a Lilly store,” he said. “This is only speculation, but I think Lilly might start to do some retro fashion to commemorate her life.”

Chrisea Chosta, a junior from Burlington, Mass., modeled for the show and is excited about the new fashion option.

“I like having one here in Bowling Green because it’s more convenient,” she said. “Usually I have to order online or go to Nashville or Lexington.”

It’s been a busy week for Augenstein with the opening of the new WKU alumni center dedicated in his name and Pink Daisy, but he said there is still much work to be done.

“It’s time for the next project,” he said. “It’s been a fun week, and I have a few tricks up my sleeve.”