Glasgow swimwear range dives into Australian market one year after UK launch

Two Glasgow-based entrepreneurs are targeting the Australian market with their recently launched sustainable swimwear label.

Mittsu founders Christie Eccles and Karoline Hermansen have enjoyed steady UK sales. Picture: Contributed

Childhood friends Christie Eccles and Karoline Hermansen set up Mittsu last year with support from The Prince’s Trust Scotland, creating a swimwear range inspired by vintage photographs and films.

Following “steady” UK sales throughout the year, the business is now aiming to build a strong presence in Australia and roll out a clothing line.

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Mittsu products are ethically made in London using locally sourced fabrics in limited edition batches to prevent waste. The company is currently in talks with ethical materials specialists as it plans to introduce fabrics made from recycled plastic bottles.

Hermansen said: “At the moment we are planning on focusing more on swimwear and bringing in vintage clothing later to compliment it. Our aim is to become as sustainable as we can. We have been in touch with Lycra companies that specialise in ethical materials and we are planning on using fabric which is made from recycled plastic bottles. We’re really excited about this as we feel more and more customers want to know where their clothes are from.”

Hermansen studied textiles at Glasgow School of Art and then worked as a manufacturer for two years in the knitting industry, while Eccles studied international business at Edinburgh University.

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Stewart Thomson, head of operations at The Prince’s Trust Scotland, said: “Our enterprise course helps young people achieve their dream of running a business. As well as learning about the essentials, what makes our course stand out is our funding opportunities and the mentoring support we offer which matches our participants with one of our volunteers.

"This tailored service has proved vital to helping to not only get ventures off the ground, but to ensure they last.”