Kenneth Jay Lane, costume jewelry designer known for his covetable creations made of faux gems and beloved by royals and First Ladies alike, died in his sleep this week at his New York apartment. He was 85 years old.
Lane first began experimenting with jewels while designing shoes under Roger Vivier at Christian Dior. From there, the designer launched his own line of costume jewelry, and eventually gathered a following that included iconic stars like Audrey Hepburn, Elizabeth Taylor, Princess Diana, and Jacqueline Kennedy—just to name a few. With a glimmering clientele and a long list of honors—such as a special Coty Award and the Neiman Marcus Fashion Award—under his belt, Lane in 1996 released a memoir titled Faking It, in which he detailed his life and career as a famed faux jewelry maker loved amongst the fashion set.
From First Lady Jackie Kennedy at the White House to Kate Middleton in a stunning pair of crystal earrings, scroll through to see stars in Kenneth Jay Lane’s jewelry.
1. Jacqueline Kennedy, 1962
Jackie Kennedy wore Lane's classic three-strand pearl necklace in this famous photo of the First Lady playing with son John F. Kennedy, Jr. at the White House.
2. Elizabeth Taylor, 1987
Elizabeth Taylor arrived to the 1987 Cannes Film Festival in a pair of glamorous crystal chandelier earrings in a design originally by Kenneth Jay Lane—but there's a twist. She purchased his earrings and then had them recreated with actual diamonds.
3. Barbara Bush, 1989
First Lady Barbara Bush sang with President George Bush at the Stripes Inauguration Ball while donning Kenneth Jay Lane pearls.
4. Kate Middleton, 2014
The Duchess of Cambridge wore stunning CZ by Kenneth Jay Lane drop earrings while in New York City.
5. Miss USA Nina Sanchez, 2015
For the 63rd annual Miss Universe Pageant, Nina Sanchez stunned in a pair of glimmering Kenneth Jay Lane chandelier earrings.