THE LION'S SHARE: When Walt Disney Pictures' latest animated feature, "The Lion King," roars into theaters on June 24, a number of accessories lines will be following in its tracks.
The bulk of the merchandise is slated to hit stores around the same time the film bows. Among those working under Disney's licensing arm will be watchmaker Timex Corp. and jewelry firm Deja Designs.
Timex also does a Disney Cinema Classics collection that depicts longtime favorites such as Snow White and The Little Mermaid.
Deja Designs, based in New York, is tying in the movie's jungle theme with the naturals trend. Earrings, pins, chokers, pendants and bracelets are done in antique-finish gold-tone metal with wood and beads. The line will retail from $4 to $8.
Timex's line will retail from $10 to $50. The Middlebury, Conn.-based firm is projecting sales of 500,000 units to retailers by the end of this year, according to a company spokeswoman. The timepieces, which come in both children's and adults' styles, feature depictions of characters from the film -- including lion cub Simba.
Other Lion King accessories licensees include Pyramid Handbags for canvas and vinyl handbags, totes, backpacks and umbrellas; American Boy and Girl for knitted fashion hats; Fresh Caps for baseball caps, and Heyman Corp. for belts and suspenders.
LIM HONORS CAROLEE: Carolee Friedlander, owner of fashion jewelry firm Carolee Designs Inc., was the commencement speaker at the Laboratory Institute of Merchandising graduation ceremonies Friday in New York. She also received the college's Distinguished Achievement Award.
Past recipients include Susan Falk, president and chief executive officer of Henri Bendel; Marvin Traub, former chairman and chief executive officer of Bloomingdale's, and Robin Burns, president and chief executive officer of EstÄe Lauder.
LOOKING EAST: Japan is the newest area of expansion for Aya Azrielant, a gold jewelry designer based in New York.
Azrielant's company, Andin International, is working with J. Osawa & Co., an import and wholesale firm in Tokyo. The line of electroform gold jewelry, called Aya New York, was launched in 30 doors -- both department and fine jewelry stores -- in mid-May, and Azrielant was on hand to observe the reactions.Jewelry in the Aya New York line is made of hollow 18-karat gold and wholesales from about $50 to $200.
J. Osawa will sell the line in the new Aya New York showroom it has built in its executive headquarters in Tokyo.
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