WARNACO TRUMPS TRUMP: Swim giant Warnaco will sponsor “The Design Apprentice’’ program at Los Angeles’ Otis School of Fashion Design, with Warnaco Swim Group executive vice president Kathy Van Ness in the role of “The Donald.” As many as 10 sophomores will be assigned to key departments within the Warnaco Swim Group — among them Speedo, OP, Kors, Anne Cole, Nautica, Catalina and Cole. At the end of the three-month term, about five will move to a design program during junior year, and two or three will join a senior-year program. The winner will be hired as an associate designer at WSG. High-rise condo not included.

SOUL STEPPER: Rock ’n’ rollin’ actress Juliette Lewis is stepping into a new role as design collaborator in her multiyear partnership with DVS Shoe Co., owned by Podium Distribution in Torrance, Calif. The deal entails a signature shoe — the Juliette, natch — and a marketing campaign, featuring her in print ads hitting Vice, Elle Girl, SG and other magazines in May, as well as in-store displays and promotions. Making its debut at this weekend’s ASR show in San Diego, the shoe is a casual trainer with a trim silhouette and gum outsole available in teal mesh, black leather with gold strips and white leather with red and gold strips. It wholesales for $28.50 and will ship in June.

MOORE HELP: At West Los Angeles star-shopping magnet Intuition, owner Jaye Hersh has collaborated with customer Mandy Moore on a T-shirt from the singer/actress’ line Mblem that will benefit tsunami relief efforts in Southeast Asia. The sheer jersey, $50 “Peace, Love and Tranquility” T-shirts are emblazoned with doves and hearts. “We’re trying to use [the store’s] exposure to help benefit the people who have been affected,” said Hersh, noting 100 percent of the sales will go to L.A.-based Operation U.S.A. At that other celeb retail hang out, Kitson on Robertson Boulevard, $1 million in tsunami relief is the goal via sales of the “Kitson Kares” T-shirt. The $26 royal blue and pink tops are being sported by Paris Hilton, Lindsay Lohan and both Gwens — Stefani and Paltrow. “A lot of my customers care more about watching Nick [Lachey] and Jessica [Simpson] on TV than CNN,” said owner Fraser Ross. “If Paris is promoting it, they want to wear it.”POSTER GIRL: Los Angeles-based dungarees newcomer Paige Premium Denim is declaring its arrival in New York at month’s end with — what else? — a billboard in Times Square. Located at Broadway and 45th Street, the shot features fitness-model-turned-designer Paige Adams-Geller posing in her low-rise, five-pocket jeans named Laurel Canyon with a cactus-lined highway superimposed in the background. Miami Beach, Fla.-based Season, the creative agency that has worked on campaigns for Lacoste and TechnoMarine, is responsible for the artwork. Adams-Geller chose New York for the billboard, which cost $75,000, to tie in with the area’s upcoming Fashion Coterie show in February.

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