Memories of Lauren Bacall

When I learned of the passing of legendary actress Lauren Bacall on August 12th, my mind was flooded with memories. Among many other roles, she was the spokesperson for Fortunoff Fine Jewelry from the late ’70s through the mid ’80s. Her image graced many of our advertisements, and there was no mistaking that sultry voice and dry humor on our radio ads. Her style and grace made her a perfect representative for Fortunoff.

I was fortunate to get to know Betty (Lauren was her stage name) during photo shoots and while working on the 1980 opening of our Fifth Avenue store. That was long before the advent of digital photography, and photo sessions sometimes took hours. The woman I got to know during downtimes was savvy, smart and always stylish. She had strong opinions and a sharp wit.

Helene Fortunoff with Lauren Bacall and Esther Fortunoff

Helene Fortunoff with Lauren Bacall and Esther Fortunoff


Baroque Pearl, Diamond and Sterling Necklace

Baroque Pearl, Diamond and Sterling Necklace – $2,150

Not surprisingly, we shared a great love for jewelry. Lauren loved many styles and stones but had a special appreciation for big, juicy, baroque pearls, like the Baroque Pearl, Diamond and Sterling Necklace shown here.

Above all, I remember a lovely person who loved her life in New York, living well and of course — the theater.

I’ll always treasure these memories, and always be grateful that Betty helped us tell our story for so many years. My heart, and the hearts of all of us at Fortunoff, are with her family and friends.

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