Steve & Barry’s isn’t putting all its eggs in one basket with Sarah Jessica Parker’s Bitten line.

The 200-unit chain specializing in university logo sweatshirts and licensed clothing has also signed a deal with actress Amanda Bynes, who will create an exclusive collection of apparel and accessories, which is being launched in stores on Aug. 10.

Each piece in the line, called Dear, will retail at $19.98 or below, which is in line with Bitten’s price points, but still higher than the store’s range of apparel, which typically is priced around $10. Dear will not carry the same fashion message as Bitten. According to information provided by Steve & Barry’s, the Dear line will “reflect Bynes’ personal sense of style and comfort.” The idea, they said, was to provide clothing that will be “dear to the wearer for years to come.”

Dear is Bynes’ first foray into fashion, but she will join a host of new celebrity designers for fall, including Paris Hilton, Sienna Miller and Victoria Beckham.

At the time of its launch, Dear will offer more than 120 pieces of clothing and 28 accessories styles, including bags, shoes, belts and cold-weather items. It will also feature 70 pieces of jewelry.

Dear’s launch hits just after Parker’s Bitten line, which lands in stores on June 7. That collection is divided into four components — Classics, suitable for the workplace; Casual, for the weekend; Trend, featuring more fashion pieces, and Lounge, including a full range of intimates and lounge pieces. The overall feel of Bitten is casual and chic, with drawstring linen, camouflage and sailor pants; fleece hooded tops; striped ribbed tank tops, and layered tank dresses. The collection also focuses on jeans and lightweight cotton jersey T-shirts with graphics such as a peacock feather and Parker’s favorite lines, such as “Do unto others as you would have done unto yourself” and “Fashion is not a luxury, it’s a right.” The accessories are equally casual, with sneakers, flip-flops and espadrille wedges. The spring and summer debut collection features about 400 clothing items and accessories, and will increase to about 500 designs by fall.

Bynes, now 21, is a teen favorite, having starred in several films including “Big Fat Liar” in 2002 and “What a Girl Wants” in 2003. Since then, she has had her own TV show, “What I Like About You,” which ended in 2006 after four years on the air. Currently, Bynes is at work on the new movie version of “Hairspray,” in which she plays Penny Pingleton alongside actors John Travolta, Michelle Pfeiffer and Christopher Walken. “Hairspray” is set for a July 20 release.

This story first appeared in the May 9, 2007 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.

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