LIZ WARMS UP: Expanding its licensed presence in the home area, Liz Claiborne Inc. last week reached an agreement in principle with Berkshire Blanket Inc. for blankets and throws under the Liz Claiborne name. The brand already offers an array of home products, including bed and bath, decorative fabrics, furniture and tabletop, each produced under license. “The Liz Claiborne brand owns a unique position in the marketplace, and we are eager to take on the challenge of interpreting its signature style into designer blankets and throws,” said Rick Lotuff, president and chief executive officer of Berkshire.

CHAUS TAPS PANITZ: David G. Panitz has been appointed chief operating officer of Bernard Chaus Inc. effective immediately, according to a statement from the company. Panitz joins Chaus after having served as chief operating officer of Ecko Unlimited. Prior to that, Panitz spent five years at Polo Ralph Lauren Corp. Panitz is taking over for Nicholas DiPaolo, who served as chief operating officer for four years. DiPaolo will retain his position as vice chairman of the company.

NEW HSN STRATEGIST: The Home Shopping Network, the multichannel shopping retailer, is expected to announce today that Jay Herratti has assumed the post of senior vice president of strategy and business development. Herratti is expected to help chart the network’s growth in the direct-to-consumer marketplace, which could include acquisitions. HSN is a television and internet retailer. Herratti’s previous stint was executive vice president at Gordon Brothers, where he led international expansion for the firm. His previous experience includes work for Federated Department Stores, where he focused on its online businesses, and several senior level posts at the now defunct Group.

MAIDENFORM’S FIT: Intimate apparel manufacturers Maidenform Inc. said an ex-Toys “r” Us corporate controller, Dorvin D. Lively, has been appointed chief financial officer of the company, effective Nov. 8. Tom Ward, chairman and chief executive officer of New York-based Maidenform, said in a statement on Tuesday that Lively “brings substantial experience to our company in, among other areas, strategic operations, accounting and financial controls, and mergers and acquistions.” Maidenform, which was aquired by the Los Angeles-based investmant banking firm Ares Management in May for an estimated $215 million, emerged from bankruptcy in July 1999.

This story first appeared in the October 20, 2004 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.