FEDERAL Member for Leichhardt Warren Entsch has promoted a new Cairns-made fashion label in Parliament ? even handing over one of the label’s silk scarves as a present to the Minister for Foreign Affairs, Julie Bishop MP.
“On 7th August I had the privilege of helping to launch a new fashion label called Mainie, which is the work of Charmaine Saunders and Denis Keeffe,” Mr Entsch told Parliament.
“The label marries the ancient art of Indigenous women from the Tanami Desert in the Northern Territory with silk from one of China’s fabled Silk Road cities, Nanjing.
“The maiden collection of 12 unique designs is manufactured in China and demonstrates how small Australian businesses are taking advantage of better relationships between our two countries,” he said.
Mr Entsch said that Charmaine Saunders and Denis Keeffe had invested everything they had, including their house, to build the Mainie brand, and wished them success for the future.
“It is absolutely wonderful to see a start-up fashion business from Cairns identifying an opportunity in the market and going for it,” he said.
“I look forward to seeing Mainie grow into a globally-recognised brand from these humble beginnings in Cairns, and exploring other inspirations such as the designs of the rainforest Aboriginal people of Yarrabah.
“I hope that other local Indigenous and non-Indigenous entrepreneurs will see the foundations that have been laid and be further inspired to take Aboriginal art, culture and fashion to the world.”
Yesterday, on behalf of Charmaine Saunders and Denis Keeffe, Mr Entsch presented Foreign Minister Julie Bishop with one of the Mainie scarves in recognition of the growing relationship between China and Australia.