NEW YORK _ Before Diana, there was Jackie.
Two decades before England's lost blond princess emerged as a fashion icon, Jacqueline Bouvier Kennedy, a mannequin-thin, wide-eyed brunet, defined style during her 1,000-day reign as the queen of an American Camelot.
Seven years after her death on May 19, 1994, the alluringly mysterious widow of both President John F. Kennedy and Greek billionaire Aristotle Onassis continues to fascinate the multitudes. An exhibition of her White House-era fashions _ "Jacqueline Kennedy: The White House Years" _ is drawing record crowds to New York's Metropolitan Museum of Art, where people wait 90 minutes or more to commune with the clothing that graced a legend.
The vintage size 6 and 8 suits (today, they'd be sized a more vanity-fueling 4 and 6), dresses and gowns on display are not just a famous figure's pricey used wardrobe. Kennedy was as careful, deliberate and history-minded in the selection of her "state clothing" (her term) as she was in spearheading the meticulous restoration of the White House.
Coming on the heels of Mamie Eisenhower's housewife dowdiness, Kennedy cut a striking figure whenever she joined her …