From the Desk of… Bergdorf Goodman’s Mimi Fukuyoshi | A Continuous Lean.

From the Desk of… Bergdorf Goodman’s Mimi Fukuyoshi

May 28th, 2012 | Categories: From the Desk of... | by Michael Williams

From the Desk of… is a window into the world and workspace of some of ACL’s most stylish friends.

As the Vice President/DMM of men’s sportswear and shoes for Bergdorf Goodman, Mimi Fukuyoshi has one of the most coveted roles in the business, let alone at of the best stores in the world. It’s not an accident that Mimi is in this role, she’s one of the smartest and most well liked people in the business. Mimi is proof that good things happen to good people, not to say she hasn’t earned it because she absolutely has.

One of the reasons that Mimi and I first connected was over a shared love of collecting. A few years ago we spoke about her then incomplete collection of Gentry magazine. She was actively seeking the final few missing copies, and we decided then that when her collection was complete it would be great to share with the ACL faithful. Today that conversation becomes a reality with a look into Mimi’s workspace and at all of those Gentry issues.

In her own words, Mimi describes what’s on her desk:

* Gentry Magazine – Men’s magazine published between 1951 and 1957. It was a quarterly and only 22 issues were published. It took me about 10 years of eBay, flea markets, used book stores, but I have all of them. I was introduced to them when I was a buyer for Bloomingdale’s and bought Engineered Garments for the store in 1999 or 2000. I asked Daiki what inspired his collection and he cited Gentry Magazine. He had a few issues which he brought out to show me and I was hooked. It became something of a mission of mine to collect them all. This magazine could never exist today: there are articles about Harris tweed, for example, and they included a swatch! Or Japanese woodblock prints with a print included!

Part of the reason it folded – the magazine was too expensive to make. It wasn’t just a men’s fashion magazine – I mean, yes, it had the usual articles about sports and cars, but it would also include pieces on how to watch a particular sport, with explanations of the rules and protocol. It covered everything – food, manners, art appreciation, how to buy a diamond for the woman in your life, Zen buddhism, etc. Not to mention that the covers are beautifully illustrated. I brought them to work because it makes me happy to look at them but it’s also fascinating to see how many brands advertised in the magazine still exist and are thriving today.

* I like being able to glance away from my computer and see photos/things that remind me of the people I care about.  Clockwise in the second photo – 1) Photo of a former colleague and I, taken by the Sartorialist in Milan.  I hate getting my picture taken - this one is acceptable because it’s from the back.  2) Invitation to the first and only Louis Vuitton men’s fashion show I’ve been to.  Besides reminding me of one of my favorite fashion shows ever, I saved the invitation because of the beautiful design.  It folds flat but opens up into a 3D Eiffel Tower, held together by magnets -  how cool is that!  Must have been so expensive to make.  3) Little 48 star flag – I got it from Ralph Lauren.  I used to be the associate buyer for the brand at Bloomingdale’s.  4) Pin from Kapital in Tokyo.  Jake Davis brought it back for me as a souvenir.  5) Polaroid taken at Dave Restaurant in Paris from maybe 6 or 7 years ago, given to me by Josh Peskowitz.  Josh, Eugene and I look so young….well, actually Eugene looks exactly the same.  6) Card from Michael Bastian.  He and Eugenia sent flowers to congratulate me when I started at BG – I think hyacinth?  They smelled so beautiful and lasted for a  really long time.  7) The pencils!  8) Photo taken at a GQ event with Bloomingdale’s colleagues.  I keep it up because Matthew Singer is in it and now we work together again.  It’s funny how things come full circle.  It also just shows that it pays to not be a jerk in this business.  It’s so small, you’ll more likely than not end up working with the same people again.

* Vintage model airplane – prop from the BG Men’s Store that they were going to throw out!  Uhhhh….not.  I saved it!

* The pencils – I can’t remember how or why I became obsessed with those pencils but I am.  I panic when the jar gets low, which is happening now.  The pencil cup should be packed so tightly that I can barely pull one out but people come in and steal them all the time – that’s how great they are.  I do all of my work in pencil, although oddly enough, I do the crossword in pen.

More From the Desk of…

Comments: 18

18 Comments to “From the Desk of… Bergdorf Goodman’s Mimi Fukuyoshi”

  1. Ron
    on May 28th, 2012
    @ 11:23 PM

    I love this series. Thank you and keep ‘em coming, ACL.

  2. Rich
    on May 28th, 2012
    @ 11:34 PM

    Those are good pencils. The inch and a quarter erasers are part of what make them great. Personally I prefer the .9mm lead. While the eraser is great, that extra large lead option is what makes it a truly great pencil, especially for extended use.

  3. cm
    on May 28th, 2012
    @ 11:48 PM

    wait what brand are those pencils?

  4. Gould
    on May 29th, 2012
    @ 8:20 AM

    That what happen when you use a Santa Maria di Novella powder box for your pens ;-)

  5. Gould
    on May 29th, 2012
    @ 8:21 AM

    For a tightly packed pencil cup, you should use a Santa Maria di Novella powder box for your pens like Mimi does ;-)

    きれいです

  6. atieforsunday.blogspot.com
    on May 29th, 2012
    @ 11:31 AM

    @cm
    The pencils are from Pentel, Twist Erase.

  7. Wayne Pate
    on May 29th, 2012
    @ 1:37 PM

    Damn! She has a Gentry I can’t get my hands on!

  8. Ramalhoni
    on May 29th, 2012
    @ 3:54 PM

    Amazing collection and work table. I didn’t know of the existence of this magazine, and I can only think of Monocle being able to have this kind of presentation and quality.

    BTW, Michael since you are a collections’ aficionado, maybe I have something you’d love.
    I recently found a collection of old postcards all belonging to my family, some date as old as the 1900′s. They’re from places like Macau, Goa, Timor, trips from and to there, and many many more. My Great great grandfather was the governor of these places when they belonged to Portugal. I’m gonna start scanning some and send you an email as a seek peak, what do you think?

  9. Goodbeard
    on May 29th, 2012
    @ 4:58 PM

    Mimi is a stone cold fox.

  10. greg chapman
    on May 29th, 2012
    @ 5:06 PM

    What a babe!

  11. abe
    on May 29th, 2012
    @ 5:10 PM

    great collection of gentry magazines, but the yellow fever comments are not necessary.

  12. greg chapman
    on May 29th, 2012
    @ 5:29 PM

    Abe your yellow fever comment is not necessary, what a NOBED!

  13. Carol Tate
    on May 29th, 2012
    @ 7:00 PM

    Gentry…What outstanding graphics and layouts.

  14. Andy
    on May 30th, 2012
    @ 12:01 PM

    There was a high level of artistry and craft that went into Genry Magazine.

    I’m reminded of other journals from that time such as Fortune and Arts & Architecture (http://www.artsandarchitecture.com/issues/index.html).

  15. Johnny Horn
    on May 31st, 2012
    @ 2:34 PM

    UK showing of The Apprentice last night they decided not to call their male grooming range “Gentry” as they thought it sounded too old fashioned. Their product branding turned out to be pretty weak in the end. Bet they didn’t know there was some history and further inspiration behind the name…

  16. Patrick
    on Jun 1st, 2012
    @ 9:44 AM

    There is currently an exhibition of GENTRY magazines on view at the Georgia Museum of Art in Athens, GA. More information about this great show is at http://www.georgiamuseum.org/art/exhibitions/on-view/pattern-and-palette-in-print It’ll be on view until June 17, 2012.

  17. Stephanie
    on Jun 1st, 2012
    @ 6:10 PM

    Great subject-I love Mimi’s style.
    Keep up the great work with the series.

  18. RR
    on Jun 2nd, 2012
    @ 10:26 PM

    http://www.thesartorialist.com/photos/on-the-street-via-savona-milano/