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Article: Mainie: Celebrating the World's Oldest Living Culture

Aboriginal art silk scarf

Mainie: Celebrating the World's Oldest Living Culture

Mainie is much more than just a beautiful scarf…

Mainie is a distinctively Australian Aboriginal fashion label which was launched in 2015.

When the Mainie trademark was first registered, three words were also trademarked as part of the brand logo – LUXURIOUS – AUTHENTIC – UNIQUE.

Mainie’s commitment to prove its credentials as a luxurious fashion product has never waned. Always striving to be the best, Mainie sources only premium quality silks and cashmere textiles, vegan-friendly Modal and the finest Australian Merino wool to create its exquisite range of products.

All Mainie scarves, wraps, tops and men’s ties are carefully handmade by skilled artisan textile workers and each piece is presented in a handmade gift box with an assurance about the provenance of the original artwork design and the Aboriginal artist’s story.

What makes Mainie truly unique is our exclusive use of authentic traditional Aboriginal art designs.

Every Mainie design has been ethically acquired in accordance with the Indigenous Art Code.  The code exists to protect the legal rights of Aboriginal artists, to ensure that they are paid a fair price for their artwork and to prohibit the unauthorised copying of their designs.

Mainie is committed to supporting the economic empowerment of Aboriginal women artists from some of the most remote and disadvantaged communities in Central Australia.

Mainie specialises in traditional designs by Warlpiri Aboriginal artists from the Tanami Desert region in the Northern Territory of Australia. 

Due to the geographical isolation of their desert homelands, the Warlpiri were among some of the last Aboriginal people in Australia to make their first contact with Europeans.

Some of the older Warlpiri women artists, whose designs Mainie has acquired, were still able to recall their first encounters with white people on their country. 

The Warlpiri people maintain a strong and unbroken connection to their country, their language, and their traditional culture.

The Warlpiri artwork designs featured in Mainie’s Central Desert collection have been purchased from the world acclaimed Warlukurlangu Art Centre, located in the small desert community of Yuendumu about 300 kilometres northwest of Alice Springs.

Warlukurlangu is Aboriginal owned and controlled. For over 30 years, it has been a stronghold for the preservation of the traditional language and culture of the Warlpiri people.

Every Warlpiri design depicts an ancient Dreaming story that has been handed down to the artist through many generations of her ancestors over tens of thousands of years.

Warlukurlangu provides a place where Warlpiri women of all ages can gather to share their time-honoured stories and keep alive the memories of their ancestors.

In the Mainie collection, there are several designs created by Warlpiri women artists, including different designs by four generations of the same family.

One of the most beautiful designs in the Mainie collection is called Desert Rain. Resplendent in the gorgeous, sun-drenched colours of the Australian Outback, it depicts an ancient Warlpiri Water Dreaming story.

Aboriginal woman artist Australian art Designed in Australia

The artist, Bessie Nakamarra Sims was a young woman when she first came across white people on her country. Mainie has also acquired designs by Bessie’s daughter, granddaughter and great-granddaughter in our collection.

Every design in the Mainie Central Desert collection has been purchased at the price set by the artists from the Warlukurlangu Art Centre.

Under the terms of Mainie's licensing agreements, the Aboriginal artist retains the copyright to their original artwork in perpetuity. Mainie pays license fees for each artist’s work to allow for the reproduction of their designs. Royalties are paid from every piece that we produce, thus creating a regular and sustainable source of income to the artists and their families. 

Mainie supports Aboriginal women artists to earn an independent income from their own work and preserve their unique cultural heritage for future generations.

A Mainie scarf not just a beautiful piece of wearable art. It is a tangible and meaningful celebration of the survival of the world’s oldest living culture, which spans back over 65,000 years to the dawn of human history.

Mainie is a Supply Nation verified Indigenous owned business and an Indigenous Art Code approved dealer member.

Mainie is the official provider of Indigenous fashion and apparel to the Australian Pavilion at Expo 2020 Dubai, that opened on 1st October 2021 and will run through until 31st March 2022.

Learn more about the Mainie fashion collection at

indigenous owned business, ethical brand, expo 2020 dubai, official provider, australian pavilion



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