Jane Seymour needs no introduction. As a performer and artist, she is an icon and a star. Through her work with Jane Seymour Designs, her brand and Open Hearts by Jane Seymour are stronger than ever.
“There is a lot of awareness of her, and her transparency about her challenges and successes off camera make her very relatable to virtually anyone,” says Mark Matheny, Seymour’s lead licensing executive.
As a film star, actress, entertainer and producer, there isn’t much that Seymour hasn’t accomplished. She has appeared on Broadway, in motion pictures and on television. Her credentials in the industry have been firmly established since she appeared in the James Bond film “Live and Let Die” at the age of 20. As of 2013, Seymour had acted in nearly 100 feature films, TV movies, TV mini-series and TV series. From “Somewhere in Time” to “Wedding Crashers” and beyond, she has entertained generations. She won an Emmy Award for “Onassis: The Richest Man in the World” and Golden Globes for “East of Eden” and “Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman,” which is still broadcast in nearly 100 countries.
Her theatrical films have grossed approximately $2.5 billion in worldwide box office and entertainment sales. She has also produced, directed and/or starred in numerous films through Catfish Productions, including the Academy Award-nominated “Walk the Line” and the upcoming Glen Campbell documentary, “I’ll Be Me.”
Seymour’s artistic abilities extend far beyond acting, however. She has seen success as a painter and designer, having created more than 1,100 original works of art. Seymour has been featured in 350 one-woman art shows and exhibited in numerous galleries and venues in the United States and Canada. Seymour has also written more than 10 inspirational, children’s and self-help books, including her most recent title, 2014’s The Wave, part of her “Open Heart” book series.
“Jane’s artistic abilities are one of the ways we think about communicating her story through products and licensing,” Matheny says.
Her success as an actress, artist, designer, public speaker and author has allowed Seymour to contribute extensively to numerous philanthropic causes. These include Childhelp, The American Red Cross, City Hearts and Camp Soaring Eagle. In addition, Seymour launched the Open Hearts Foundation in 2010, which is supported by Jane and her licensing activities.
Seymour has also appeared on thousands of magazine covers and earned global recognition as a style icon. This has given her a platform to share her approach to happy, healthy, balanced and elegant living.
Seymour’s views on everything from entrepreneurialism, humanitarianism, family and personal discovery to reinvention, overcoming adversity, and health, fitness and beauty are reflected in the products licensed by Jane Seymour Designs. Her efforts with Jane Seymour Designs have led to the creation of filmed entertainment and products that have achieved more than $4.5 billion in sales.
Jane Seymour Designs has been involved with a many consumer product initiatives and endorsement programs that reflect Seymour’s values. It has launched and promoted consumer product programs with a number of clients, including Procter & Gamble, Clairol, Revlon, Gerber Baby Products, Saks Inc., Austin Reed Group, Guthy-Renker, Amini Innovation Corp. (AICO), StyleCraft Home Collection, Fotiou Frames, Windward International and KAY Jewelers.
“The combination of Jane Seymour’s celebrity, who she is as a person and high-quality products helps to get people to consider her as a purchase,” Matheny says. “She licenses products that she designs or would have in her home or wear herself.”
The KAY Jewelers program has been one of Seymour’s most prominent and successful endeavors. The first range of Open Hearts by Jane Seymour launched in 2008. The Open Hearts Collections celebrate Seymour’s original paintings and sketches through diamond necklaces, earrings, bracelets and rings available at popular price points. Using her paintings and sketches as a reference point, every season Jane continues to create new images for Open Hearts jewelry designs.
More than 175 pieces of various sizes and settings have been created in yellow, white and two-tone 14-karat gold and sterling silver since the program’s launch. The original line led to other collections, including Open Hearts Family, Open Hearts Wave and Personalized Open Hearts. Open Hearts sells through more than 1,400 stores in all 50 states and through KAY’s website.
“The collection is inspired by some of my personal paintings, ‘Open Hearts,’” Seymour says. “Open Hearts is inspired by the experiences of my mother, Mieke Frankenberg, who was imprisoned in a WWII internment camp, and was fond of saying, ‘If you think life is insurmountable and times are tough, go help someone else. It takes you out of yourself and ultimately helps you. If your heart is broken and you close it off, you can't let the negativity out, and you can't let new love in.’ In times of challenge your instinct will be to close off your heart. By accepting, opening your heart and reaching out to help another, love and purpose will enter your life."
This selfless, positive outlook inspired Seymour’s art, creating branding platforms and leading to the launch of the Open Hearts Foundation. Matheny says product categories that resonate with Open Hearts “are those that are about genuine social expression, love and meaningful gifts for others and oneself.”
One of the many successful programs for Jane Seymour Designs was her collaboration with Guthy-Renker, a leading direct marketing company. In 2006, Guthy-Renker launched Natural Advantage with Jane Seymour, a line of skin care and anti-aging products. Seymour's celebrity was critical to the launch of Natural Advantage.
Another undertaking for Jane Seymour Designs has been a furniture collaboration with AICO launched in 2009. Seymour has worked with Michael Amini to create a number of successful furniture programs, including Hollywood Swank, Platine de Royale, Portafino and Bel Air Park. Furniture licensed with Seymour’s likeness is now sold on three continents and presented in dedicated showroom space of nearly 50,000 square feet.
Also launched in 2009 was Seymour’s collaboration with Windward International Inc., Jane Seymour Botanicals Inc. It provides realistic, high-quality silk flowers, permanent botanical floral arrangements, wreaths and more. Products are marketed to leading home décor retailers in all 50 states and Canada and sold online through FTD.com, Wayfair.com, Amazon.com, Houzz.com and other sites. They have been featured on TV on “The View” and “Access Hollywood” and in various home décor magazines.
Recent undertakings include partnerships with StyleCraft and Fotiou Frames. StyleCraft has grown from a regional lamp company to serve international markets. Fotiou is known for fine-quality moulding styles and innovative design.
StyleCraft’s Jane Seymour Collection launched in 2010. It includes nearly 100 SKUs of portable lighting sold in 1,500 retail accounts across six countries. The collection is featured in StyleCraft’s U.S. showrooms in Highpoint, N.C., Las Vegas, Dallas, Atlanta and Tupelo, Miss. As for Fotiou, it acquired a license to create the Jane Seymour Moulding Collection in late 2013. The Jane Seymour Moulding Collection will launch to thousands of retailers in June 2014.
Jane Seymour Designs will continue to search for brand-appropriate licensing, sponsorship, endorsement, and promotional and retail partnerships. The goal will be to continue expanding Seymour’s consumer products brand audience and build on the current franchise. From home, health, fitness and beauty to fashion, gift, social expression and publishing, the strength of Seymour’s persona and brand should continue to resonate with consumers in many categories.
“Jane’s celebrity and universal message resonates with many people,” Matheny says. “The key is keeping the story out there and communicating it in a heartfelt way through her products. Jane is self-effacing, elegant, funny and witty, and her values can be woven authentically into a number of product categories.”
Click below for New & Notable products: