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Mimco’s 25th birthday coffee table book is a survey of the brand’s past, present and future in Australian fashion

WORDS BY IZZY WIGHT

Exploring Mimco’s influence on the wider industry.

Remaining in the Australian fashion consciousness for over two decades is no easy feat. Known for their particular penchant for easygoing elegance, the Australian fashion consumer knows what they want.

Our ‘legacy’ brand is one with integrity, creative flair and an authentic voice –  a brand that never takes itself too seriously. Sartorial success is about finding a point of difference, creating a classic and meshing it effortlessly into the wardrobe of the modern Australian woman.


For more fashion news, shoots, articles and features, head to our Fashion section.


Mimco’s limited-edition coffee table book, Past, Present, Future, edited by former Harper’s Bazaar editor Kellie Hush, celebrates exactly that – 25 years of iconic accessories and unofficial standing in the Australian fashion brand hall of fame.

Chronicling the brand’s success from its establishment in 1996, Past, Present, Future delves into an archive of stunning full-page campaign shots, artistic illustrations and formative design sketches. Taking it back to the very beginning, founder Amanda Briskin-Retting addresses her namesake brand in an opening letter.

“At your inception in 1996, I was 24 and named you using my childhood nickname, Mim – Mim’s Company, Mimco for short. I reflect on the journey as your founder with pride for the DNA and vision that has attracted the people who have worked for and with you.”

The book has been released in tandem with a limited edition 25th birthday collection, reissuing some of its most beloved accessory designs from the last quarter-century. Among them, of course, is the iconic Button 2005 Day Bag – a design inspired by founder Amanda Briskin-Retting’s visit to Paris’ famous Clignacourt flea markets

Working her way through the sprawling Parisian marketplace, Amanda came across a haberdashery store and, among the curated clutter, a massive, round, blue button. This was the foundation for both the Button bag and the brand’s celebrated logo; which I first spotted on my mum’s very own black edition of the 2005 favourite. 

My first Mimco purchase? A Mimco logo pouch in the black and rose gold colourway, obviously. I was a 15-year-old Catholic schoolgirl with a part-time Chemist Warehouse gig, last Christmas’ squirrel fund and the unbridled need to join the Mimco accessory-wearing cool-girl rankings.

That’s the magic of the Mimco brand; it has an appeal that feels uniquely ageless. The aptly-named Past, Present, Future book documents the brand’s evolution, moving further towards sustainability as the fashion industry takes a circular focus.

 

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The ‘Social Action’ chapter explores Mimco’s partnership with the Ethical Fashion Initiative, created in a mission to build a more responsible fashion industry and give opportunities to artisans living in marginalised communities. The result? Since 2015, Mimco has provided work to over 1400 artisans – 86 per cent of whom have been women. 

As any fashion enthusiast will know, a brand’s image lies in its collaborators – the creatives who help bring the products to life. Mimco’s 25 years of collaborations are documented in the chapter (my personal favourite) ‘In Focus’, peppered with testimonials from some of the industry’s most influential names.

Photographer Pierre Toussaint calls his Tokyo Mimco shoot “a great experience”, Miranda Kerr speaks on the “incredible things” the brand has achieved and NGV director Tony Elwood – a key player behind the ongoing Mimco x NGV collaboration – speaks on the “accessibility, innovation and quality” of the Mimco product. 

Not that I needed any convincing. The coffee table book comes in its very own ‘est. 1996’ tote bag and is emblazoned in the brand’s signature black and rose gold colour palette; my living room’s little piece of Australian fashion history.

Shop the full collection and get your copy of Past, Present, Future here.

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