Kenneth Jay Lane: An American Icon


Thomas Laine Jewelry Blog

Kenneth Jay Lane: An American Icon

Kenneth Jay Lane is perhaps the most celebrated of all American fashion jewelry designers. Called “the undisputed King of Costume Jewelry” by Time Magazine, his bold designs have been favored by some of the world’s most stylish women for the last five decades.


Lane actually began his career in the art department at American Vogue, and then designed shoes for Delman and Christian Dior, before he conquered the world of jewels. He designed a few earrings and bracelets, casually, to accompany a pair of shoes, and a new career was born. His first collection, which was launched in 1963, was promptly picked up by the biggest names in Manhattan retail — Bonwit Teller, Saks Fifth Avenue, and Neiman Marcus. He would go on to design pieces for some of the world’s great style icons, including Jackie O, The Duchess of Windsor, Liz Taylor, and Diana Vreeland.


080310-jackie-o-300 Jackie O in a three strand Kenneth Jay Lane pearl necklace that she wore frequently

vreeland1_t670 Lane’s dear friend Diana Vreeland wearing Kenneth Jay Lane bracelets

We are proud to carry some of Kenneth Jay Lane’s most iconic, collectible designs at Thomas Laine. Here are some highlights of our collection.

Lane is famous for his designs that feature animals and his animal head bangles, in particular, never go out of style.


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Black Double Elephant Head Bracelet


30060299 Kenneth Jay Lane

Brown Double Giraffe Head Bracelet


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Crystal Double Leopard Head Bracelet


30060301 Kenneth Jay Lane

Tiger Head Bracelet


30060298 Kenneth Jay Lane

White Double Elephant Head Bracelet


30060304 Kenneth Jay Lane

Lion Head Bracelet


30060303 Kenneth Jay Lane

White Elephant Bracelet


30060248 Kenneth Jay Lane

Leopard Bracelet


30060300 Kenneth Jay Lane

Crystal Double Tiger Head Bracelet

Kenneth Jay Lane’s Maltese Cuffs are another perennial favorite and an example of what he refers to as “fabulous fakes”. His cuffs are directly inspired by Maltese Cuff bracelets designed by Fulco di Verdura for the Verdura fine jewelry house in the 1930s.


30060305 Kenneth Jay Lane

Gold Pearl and Crystal Maltese Cuff


30060013 Kenneth Jay Lane

Black Enamel Pearl and Crystal Maltese Cuff


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Polished Gold Narrow Multi-Gem Maltese Cuff


82931 Coco Chanel in her Verdura Maltese Cuffs, which were the inspiration behind Kenneth Jay Lane’s

Another favorite fabulous fake? Kenneth Jay Lane’s exquisite take on the famed five strand pearl necklace worn by Audrey Hepburn in the film Breakfast at Tiffany’s.


SONY DSC Kenneth Jay Lane

Audrey – Five Row Pearl Necklace with Swarovski Crystal Flower Clasp


Holly-holly-golightly-11636546-1992-2525 Audrey wearing the famous original as Holly Golightly

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