NEW YORK — Betsey Johnson has inked a deal with Anaheim, Calif.-based Lunada Bay for a swimwear collection set to bow at retail in April.
The initial collection will include about 80 pieces, comprising separate tops and bottoms, which will range in wholesale prices from $22 to $40 for each piece.
While the styling is still being developed, the line will include signature Betsey Johnson motifs such as lace, polkadots and leopard and rosebud prints.
“I have always loved lingerie and swimwear, and have long been inspired by those categories,” said the quirky designer. “It’s a really natural development for me, and the move to swimwear comes at a time when I have established more of an identity and my customer has grown. Licensing just seems to click for me now.”
Distribution is planned for department stores, specialty shops and boutiques. Lunada executives declined to divulge sales, saying the collection has not yet been unveiled.
Swimwear is the latest of a slew of products and licensing deals the designer has signed in recent months as a strategy to build her brand and extend her name into new arenas including jewelry, belts, watches and eyewear. Lunada Bay also makes swimwear under license for Hurley and Lucky Brand, and has its own brand, Becca.
Johnson joins a parade of fashion designers and brands who have recently entered the swim category, including Michael Kors, Carmen Marc Valvo, Diane von Furstenberg, St. John Knits and Juicy Couture.
This story first appeared in the October 13, 2005 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.