By  on January 19, 2005

NEW YORK — Diane von Furstenberg Studio is joining the growing number of brands selling directly to customers over the Internet.

The designer is linking up with Amazon.com, which is building the site, called dvf.com, an Amazon statement said. Von Furstenberg’s existing site, dianevonfurstenberg.com, has begun linking to the new transactional site, but dvf.com will officially be launched in early February after her runway show on Feb. 6 during New York Fashion Week.

Fans of the designer will be able to keep up with her travels, book and restaurant recommendations, as well as read through an online magazine that will include a monthly diary written by the designer. Well-known astrologer Shelley von Strunkel will contribute weekly horoscopes, and “Truth or Dare” will profile artists and others.

“To have a shop on the Web seems like the right thing to do” after opening stores in Paris and London, von Furstenberg said in an interview. “Our woman moves and travels and certainly uses the Web. I think it’s a nice adventure.”

She added: “I am such a big traveler and I am always writing a diary in my mind. It will force me to write and share it.” Her recent trip to Rwanda will be her first subject.

Amazon also operates Web sites for Target, The Bombay Company, Borders and the NBA Store. DVF will provide and control the content of the site, including images and product descriptions, and fulfill orders. Amazon will get both a flat fee and a cut of sales.

“I am the biggest Amazon user,” said von Furstenberg in a statement. “I love it for its excellent customer service and speedy navigation.”

The site will display photos from runway shows, and visitors will be able to glean information about each product by running their cursors over photos. If they want to buy, one click will deposit the item in their shopping cart. A map will show stores that carry the line.

The DVF Studio collection has recently been showcased in online trunk shows at the Web sites of Neiman Marcus and Saks Fifth Avenue.

In general, online units have the potential to do about the same volume as stores, retailers have found. They also increase awareness of a brand and prompt customers to visit stores in search of new merchandise.

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