Reimagining the retail sector
Central Geelong business The Reimaginarium is now a City of Design Champion. Owner Ryan Mischkulnig provides an insight into sustainable design possibilities.
Tell us about The Reimaginarium.
“We repair, restore, repurpose and reimagine previously-used products, offering a more sustainable alternative to mainstream retailers. Our products include restored and reimagined bluetooth speakers, furniture, homewares, jewellery, bikes and more.”
Ryan believes that recreated products can offer the same features as new products while having a big impact on our shift to a more sustainable circular economy.
“In just 12 months we’ve grown from a small outlet for our own handmade recreated products to a retail space supporting more than a dozen re-creative businesses from across Victoria and Australia.”
What else can be done to highlight the benefits of sustainable product design?
“Sustainability is still undervalued in the broader design industry. There are many industries where it’s financially viable to produce products from reclaimed materials.
“We need to shift the mindset – from convincing people about the benefits of sustainable products – to producing sustainable products that are so good that people want them regardless of the sustainability benefits. That’s where The Reimaginarium comes in.”
Why were you keen to be a UNESCO City of Design Champion?
“Geelong has a strong design history which stretches back to its inception, and it’s exciting to be part this continuing legacy.
“Designing and developing reused products and developing more efficient remanufacturing methods will be critical to the future of design. I’m excited to represent this (currently) boutique industry as part of Geelong – UNESCO City of Design.”
How has the public responded to your reused, repurposed and reimagined products?
“Customers appreciate that all our products are unique and are at least as durable as new products.
“One of the most rewarding responses to our products is that they inspire people to make or repair something they have at home or bring in an heirloom that we can make useful again.”
To see their products and for more information, visit thereimaginarium.com.au