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The Bread in Common experience|Browsing the gallery at MANY 2.0|Candlelight Carols with the Libby Hammer Quintet|Moominpappa at Sea 14 Jan- 2 Feb 2019|Beautiful Australian South Sea pearls

Fremantle’s best Christmas shopping ideas

For Christmas shoppers that love a list or those preferring to browse–here’s Fremantle’s best Christmas shopping ideas and tips to relax and enjoy the festive season...

12 things you can only buy in Fremantle

Did you know 92.9 FM’s Ryan Jon lives in Freo? He’s been checking out gift ideas and found 12 things you can only buy in Fremantle (we quite like the sound of that baby rattle).

There’s nothing like open air shopping

Fremantle is without doubt Western Australia’s best open air shopping experience with the Freo Doctor gently blowing, cafés with parklets and lots of choices for a mid shop pit stop. Where else can you tick off your Christmas shopping and head down to Bathers Beach House to relax. Put your toes in the sand, enjoy a 'long jetty iced tea' and watch the sunset (**sigh**).

Shop with the family

Make the list, plan your stops using our beautiful Fremantle shopping map (↓), and set the reward for the kids when you’re all done (the icecream at Gabriel Chocolate is a winner). There's markets, boutiques, small and large stores where the kids can pick out something special even on a pocket money budget. Break it up with a run around the Esplanade - big kids at the skate park and little ones at the playground or maybe a ride on the wheel. ‘Santa’ might glean some clues for Christmas gifts along the way.

Christmas markets, cooperatives and collectives and uber cool gifts

Fremantle is home to many creative peeps and the markets, cooperatives or collectives are a haven for gifts from local makers and artisans. Look for them at MANY 2.0, FOUND at Fremantle Art Centre, Common Ground and The Artisan Store on High Street or check out the list on our shopping pages .

Pick up the turkey, the ham and everything else for the table - in Fremantle

Whether you bring the people you love together with an Aussie style BBQ or traditional sit down dinner, clove studded hams, plump turkeys, cherries or flowers for the table are waiting at gourmet stores, grocers and delicatessens in Freo. Get an early start at Frank’s on Wray Ave or pop into Kakulas Sister and Little Sister, Freo’s purveyors of groceries and fine foods from around the world. Head over to our groceries and fresh food pages to find more. 

Gifts for the impossible to buy for!

For folks that have everything - experiences hit the mark. A season pass to Luna on SX, tickets to Spare Parts summer show Moominpappa at Sea, a headlining act at Fremantle Arts Centre’s 2019 events program or splurge on a night or two at one of Fremantle’s boutique hotels. Find more inspo here.

Light up your Christmas spirit

Amidst the pre Christmas frenzy it’s lovely to stop and enjoy the season. Light up your Christmas spirit at the free annual City of Fremantle’s Candlelight Carols (this year at Fremantle Oval). Kidogo Arthouse brings in songstress Kavesha Mazella and guest musicians for Carols & Christmas songs on the deck and Fishing Boat Harbour is hosting a special Christmas Festival through December with carollers, circus acts, Christmas lights and markets. Check the Fremantle story special events pages for new events added daily.

That special something

Creations Jewellery and Designers travel the world to find the best diamonds for bespoke pieces available in their High Street flagship store. Much sought after Australian South Sea pearls can be found at Kailis Australian Pearls in Fremantle’s West End precinct and Fremantle Opals have a stunning range of uncut pieces from some of the best opal fields in the world including Australia’s Lightning Ridge.

#shopFREO competition

Thought WA’s best open air shopping experience couldn’t get any better? Well you could also win $500 to spend in your favourite shop in Fremantle! Just ask for the unique code word in 85 + participating businesses when you spend $20 or more in one store. Enter your code word online (and wait for the call!). Two $500 prizes will be drawn each Friday right up to 21 December 2018.


Free parking Santa

Keep an eye out for #freeparkingsanta and his elves as their annual visit from the North Pole kicks off in December. They’ll be making guest appearances right up to Christmas looking for shoppers to pay for their parking.

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Megan Salmon, Megan Salmon Clothing|Kylie Radford, Morrison|Pekho: wear + wares|Gaelle Beech, Anjel Ms|Trish Bygott, Madam Bukeshla|Deborah McKendrick, Velvet Sushi|Haute on High

Frock on

If there’s a ‘Freo look’ in women’s fashion, Fremantle’s fashion designers didn’t get the memo. They’re busy producing everything from edgy street wear to non–crush travel dresses to hand-stitched tunics to floor length gowns. Whatever your wardrobe requirements–special occasion or special treat–Fremantle probably has a fit for you.

Contemporary labels like Megan Salmon and Morrison enjoy widespread popularity, but their flagship stores remain in Fremantle where they began.

At Megan Salmon, find form flattering dresses, tops and skirts with an artistic edge. You’re unlikely to have a twinsies moment wearing something from this store; the prints are distinctive, and the designer prides herself on her solid understanding of what works for women.

For stylish urbanites, Morrison has gear for dressing both down and up. Interesting silhouettes, wearable designs and quality natural fabrics are at the core of the range; a great fit for women who want to feel well put together and up to the minute, whatever they’re doing.

Lovers of natural fabrics and easy to wear styles flock to Pekho on Wray Avenue. Linen dresses, pants, skirts and tunics are all locally made in small runs, and designed to work together in a trans–seasonal way. Designs favour real body shapes, too, bypassing the frowsy with relaxed shapes and flattering necklines. A great collection of jewellery and scarves helps complete the look.

Across the road at Madam Bukeshla, there’s a timeless appeal to the defiantly non–mass produced clothing. Designer Trish Bygott’s artistic streak is in full evidence from the wonderful window displays to the clothes. She uses hand–stitching to create the arty details on her dresses, skirts and tunics, which are made from earthy linens in a natural colour palette.

It’s a similarly artistic vibe at Anjel Ms in High Street. In true collaborative fashion, a group of local designers and visual artists have joined forces with textile producers in Bali, Nepal and India to produce clothing using traditional dying and weaving methods. That’s the Anjel Ms Project–ethically produced fashion that’s pimped with contemporary flair – and this store showcases the vibrant, textured results.

The light-filled studio–style shop at Velvet Sushi adds gravitas to the luxurious drape and womanly shapes featured in the clothes. Flattering, feminine lines are the feature here. While special occasion gear does feature, this label is also about classic, timeless basics in stretch fabrics that pass the crush test and fit women’s shapes. Stylish travellers need look no further for black and neutral coloured dresses, tunics and pants that look great even when they’re pulled straight from a suitcase.

If it’s a serious frock–up you’re embarking on, make a stop at Natalie Rolt in North Fremantle. It’s glamour overload here, where floor-grazing gowns and flowy jumpsuits share space with slinky cocktail frocks and form–fitting two-piece garments. The local designer makes to order, and also has a collection of formal gowns for hire. The luxurious space is a long way from the Fremantle Markets where the designer sold her first collections and grew her following. You can even get your tan, hair and makeup on site.

At Haute on High, the feel is equally top end, though the price tags aren’t as hefty as you might think on first glance. From cocktail to black tie and mother of the bride, there are ready to wear outfits from around the world, plus an in-house label that stretches to bling and clutch bags. There’s plenty of opulence here; think sparkling bodices and flattering drapes. But it’s also accessible. Part of what draws shoppers from far afield is the honest sales staff lending their designers’ eye to fitting you out to perfection.

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Abhi's Bread|Frank's Gourmet Butcher|Wild Bakery|Little Sister|Fremantle Markets|Galati's|Manna Wholefoods

Where to pick up

You might not think you’ve come to Freo for supplies, but don’t be surprised if you come away with a stash. A tub of chilli olives, perhaps. Some sourdough. A wheel of cheese. Some biltong. Maybe a kilo of marinated camel.

If you want an insight into the soul of the city, ‘grocery sightseeing’ is a great starting point.

Many Freo locals adopt the ‘little and often’ mode of shopping, and there’s plenty of niche gourmet establishments that make that possible. Places where longstanding owners know their customers’ names along with their facts about spelt flour. Shops whose giddy aromas of spice, bread, salami or white mulberries announce themselves 20 paces down the footpath. Outfits whose branded calico tote bags are as collectable as the produce for which they are locally famous. Places with heart. 

If you want an insight into the soul of the city, ‘grocery sightseeing’ is a great starting point.

Try walking into Abhi’s Bakery and out again without succumbing to a fruit loaf for the morning’s brekkie, for instance. Or maybe you’ll opt for a giant loaf of sourdough from Wild Bakery, with a couple of takeaway bienenstich slices for the road.

At Kakulas Sister, and its neighbouring Little Sister, harness your willpower if cheese and / or Turkish Delight are a weakness. This is the spot to collect a nifty box of biscuits, some seeds, olive oil, coffee, chocolate, dolmades and endless caches of the European deli-style stuff you don’t necessarily see in the supermarket aisles.

Beyond the gifts and trinkets of the Fremantle Markets is The Yard, where multiple stalls offer a catch-all for produce. There’s butchers, bakers, peddlers of wholefood, cheese sellers; you can even get biltong and cupcakes, and herbal tea. Not to mention fresh fruit and veggies direct from the market gardens. If you’re there near close of business on Sunday, expect bargains as the sellers out-shout each other for your attention.

Get the weird mushrooms, the hard-to-find fresh herb and the dinky okra here – it’s all in gleaming good shape.

The cacophony of signage outside Frank’s Gourmet Meats declares the breadth of what’s on offer at this Fremantle institution on Wray Avenue. You can get your scallopini and your chicken kebabs, sure. But if meat–flavoured adventuring is your thing–emu, camel, goat, duck, crocodile anyone? Frank probably has it. The sausages are legendary.

Get the add–ons at another longstanding institution, Galati, next door. This family–run grocer has bargains in the fresh fruit and veg department, plus a good range of cheese, cured meats, deli items and plenty of Italian speciality breads, oils and pasta. Their continental rolls are an excellent takeaway lunch option.

At Manna Wholefoods, you can shop for all things earthy and organic. A thriving café serving up the right mix of wholesome and flavoursome lunch, raw sweets and juices, it’s also a grocer with a distinct bent towards healthy, organic, sustainable fare. Tubs of nuts, seeds, grains and dried fruits are just the start. If you need Himalayan salt, cacao butter, organic milk, essential oils, mesh bags, cruelty-free cosmetics or thoughtful kitchen utensils, this is your stop.

When you’re after top quality fresh produce, or that tricky ingredient that isn’t at the supermarket, Peaches in South Fremantle is the go-to store. Get the weird mushrooms, the hard-to-find fresh herb and the dinky okra here – it’s all in gleaming good shape. There’s also loads of high end confectionary, deli items, smoked fish and free range chicken. Peaches has an entire organic section at the back, and a well-oiled checkout system. You’ll be offered bags or a box, but you might consider an upgrade.

As with any of these specialty outlets, a calico tote adorned with the shop’s logo could become a treasured Freo memento.

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|Three Stories|Bodkins Bootery|Common Ground Collective|1991 Skateshop

Sharp dressed men

Here comes a cliché: men don’t like shopping. And yet, men need things to wear. Fremantle is wise to this conundrum. It has more than a few stores that have defied retail trends to survive and thrive–some for decades–by offering the right mix of product and service.

“We take the pain out of it,” says Sam Pangiarella at Warrens Menswear, who could be speaking for all the service-driven operators attracting clientele from across Perth and beyond.

Fellas, your wearables are waiting. And be heartened by the knowledge that when trying on strides or choosing your season’s shirts in Freo, you are never more than 30 paces from a celebratory coffee or beer.

As well as suiting up everyone from school ball beaus to wedding parties, Warrens has a phenomenal range of Levi’s and the only Seidensticker shirts south of the river. Clearly you learn something about what guys want when you’ve been in business since 1931. Attentive, intuitive service backs up the quality.

Across the road at Terrace Menswear, there’s a fashion-savvy feel to the gear, much of which is imported from Italy. The always-slick window displays at this 32 year-old institution herald the level of quality to the range, which covers everything from dress jackets to tees, shoes, watches, socks and aftershave. Wearable fashion is the mantra. An investment here is unlikely to date.

Along High Street, there’s variety and contrast. You can pick up a locally made artisan tee or a pair of cufflinks at the Common Ground Collective, or some handmade shoes at Bodkins Bootery, a long standing institution specialising in high quality Spanish, Italian and English shoes (although the Anastazi boots are locally made by hand). Ecuadorian straw hats round out the offering here. There’s a women’s range, too, to keep female shopping partners interested.

Bousfields is a stalwart of the High Street strip, an old fashioned menswear shop where measuring tapes are always at the ready. Get fitted for a suit, pick up a casual shirt or some socks, and don’t go past the range of hats–from paper to wool–gracing the shelves.

At near–neighbour Three Stories, the feel is more surf and skate, with a bit of a twist. The wearables sit alongside a great range of gifts, games, books and art. There’s even a dedicated floor for surfboards and skateboards. There’s more in the street wear offering at Wear2, where the shoes, tees and pants are sourced from around the world. Defiant skaters need look no further than 1991 Skateshop.

Knucklehead Shipping Co at MANY 2.0 bridges the gap between contemporary and bygone era dressing. From jackets to accessories, it’s good quality, dapper stuff with confidence and attitude. You might also browse the vintage clothing in the MANY 2.0 collective for a fun retro find.

Finishing touches? Compendium Design Store is worth a visit for its unisex design–forward offerings. Messenger bags, watches and Solid State cologne are all here.

Fellas, your wearables are waiting. And be heartened by the knowledge that when trying on strides or choosing your season’s shirts in Freo, you are never more than 30 paces from a celebratory coffee or beer.

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Say hello Jo @ The Archive|Say hello to Wade @ Leake Street Cafeteria|Lucy & Michael at Japingka Gallery High Street West End

Shopping, snapping and winning in Fremantle

Someone said to me last week that if Fremantle were a tree, the Cappuccino Strip would be its main trunk, but the beauty lies in its branches because that is where the flowers grow.

How cool is that sentiment?  It was said to me by Michael who runs Fremantle Tours as he took me on a personal adventure in search of the cool, the quirk and the colourful shopping haunts in the city. 

Freo is a total hidden gem when it comes to a little bit of retail therapy and, particularly at this time of year, is the place to be. So, strap yourselves in, and let’s go shopping! This is going to be a colourful and fun ride!

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Many 2.0

Oh, this place just gets it.   There is so much to love, or is that many?  It is eclectic brilliance at its best and home to so much awesomeness.  Think art, sculpture, jewelry, homewares, clothes and even a hairdresser!  The space is relaxed and friendly, leaving you to meander at your leisure and just be inspired by what’s on display.   When I was there I got chatting to Kate who is one of the brains behind Many 2.0 (and the Kate of and she was casually sewing a fantastic hat as we spoke.  Yes, it’s that kind of vibe: creative but chilled all at once. 

Say hello at:  Adelaide Street, Fremantle (the old Spotlight building) or find them on Instagram at @many_projects

Freo is a total hidden gem when it comes to a little bit of retail therapy and, particularly at this time of year, is the place to be. So, strap yourselves in, and let’s go shopping! This is going to be a colourful and fun ride!

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Fremantle Artisan Store

Just like the name says, this is literally a collection of artists, in fact no less than 150 of them!  You are guaranteed to find a unique purchase here as there is so much choice!  All of the artists are local to Freo so it really is redefining the benefits of shopping local.  If you’re an artist you can display your stuff here for as little as $15 a week.  And it’s not just art in the form of paintings; there’s felt, clothing, jewelry, pottery, handmade cards, homewares, shadow boxes, terrariums, crochet, mosaic and woodwork. 

Say hello at 81a High Street, Fremantle or find them on Instagram at @theartisanstore

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The Archive

This place is literally split with two distinct themes: fashion and homewares, so you can choose what you want (or both!).  It’s home to some of the coolest art and cards I have seen, and has a dedicated kids gift section.  Plus, there’s a secret café at the back (Leake Street Cafeteria) for that much needed caffeine hit because this shopping business is thirsty work!

Say hello at 23 Market Street Fremantle or find them on Instagram at @the_archive_fremantle or the café at @leakestcafeteria 

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This is a store that makes you excited to buy for yourself or others.  As the owners said to me when I visited “we sell beautiful things that are designed and made by creative minds”.   Yes, I could have spent longer in here, both in terms of time and money!  Again everything is locally sourced and made so no mass production.  I particularly loved the tea towels that were dotted all over the shop, you can buy them as is or have them stretched and framed on a canvas as a cool piece of wall art.

Say hello at 95 High Street, Fremantle or find them on Instagram at @remedystore

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Common Ground

This store has a little more of a street vibe and the clothes and gifts somehow have a bit more edge.  Again, you can discover a little bit of everything: candles, wallets, cards, hats, wreaths, art, sculpture, jewelry, and – just as I was leaving – a box of plaster skulls (that I think doubled as planter boxes) were delivered! 

What I love about places like this is that you’re not only buying and supporting local but buying gifts with personality and flair.  They are not mass produced so the uniqueness factor is right up there, which is pretty cool in my books.   Go explore the branches, find the flowers and the magic next time you’re in Freo and let me know what you love.

Say hello at 82 High Street, Fremantle or find them on Instagram at @cmmngrnd

Shop, Snap, Tag and Win #FreoWishList

Another cool discovery on the tour was the #FreoWishList which is a fun Instagram competition.  And hello, who doesn’t love a competition?!  All you need to do is find something you want for Christmas at stores in Fremantle, take a pic of it and tag it #FreoWishList plus the shop that you found it in and share it on Instagram.  Easy! You can win up to $500 worth of shopping in the city, perfect for that last minute Christmas haul.  I’ve already shared some of my faves and you totally should too. Get on it quick as it closes on December 22. Happy shopping, happy snapping and good luck!

Find them on Instagram at @fremantlestory

Guest blogger Jo Newman (@sayhellojo

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Shadwallah|Made Local Summer Market|Penny Lanes Music Workshop|Stackwood|Booyeembara Park

Off grid - Fremantle's warehouse district

When sleuthing out the offbeat hubs of Fremantle, ask yourself this: where would the creative types be? Not the shiny places, probably. Not the gentrified bits. Set your GPS instead for the slightly grungy warehouse pocked area around Stack, Wood and Blinco Streets. The Fibonnacci Centre (affectionately The Fib) is downwind from Monument Hill on Blinco Street. Past the new housing development, behind funky wrought iron gates, the converted warehouse is home to artists’ studios and creative events. Concerts, uke jams, yoga and exhibitions all happen here; get the lowdown while soaking up the eclectic boho vibe at Roark and…
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|Wear 2 Fremantle|Captain Walkers Bicycles|Fremantle Opals|Joynt Venture|Nomad Gnome|Parlapa

What lies behind

Pop quiz question: Where can you get a black pearl, a nose ring, a Nepalese tunic, a kebab, some collectable vinyl, some artwork from a pop-up gallery, painted nails and a Thai massage, all within paces of an easy park?

Hard-core fossickers will tell you that rewards like this abound in the warren-like malls and arcades of Fremantle. No chain store ennui here. Some fiercely individual businesses – many of them operating for more than a decade – have made their homes in the eclectic patch around Paddy Troy Mall and Fremantle Malls (the alley off William Street near Kings Square).

Joynt Venture has moved premises a few times (from the Freo markets to a bolt hole in the piazza to the roomy premises it now occupies) keeping loyal customers on their toes. But they’re happily tucked away off Paddy Troy Mall and, after 40 years of trade, they’re the go-to place for everything from heavy metal and punk tees to hair colour, sunglasses, body jewellery, posters and coloured contact lenses.

Street smart
During the week there’s easy parking around Paddy Troy mall, and the vibe is relaxed; fine conditions for investigating the offerings at Wear 2, the business whose urban gear has been bridging the vintage, surf and skate cultures for seven years. Think tees, footwear, and hats, with clearance items sourced from the US and elsewhere.

Bike bits
Captain Walkers Cycles is a tucked away cyclists Mecca; a destination store with a loyal following, this one for lovers of hip bikes (plus parts and personable service) without the intimidating attitude.

Hard-core fossickers will tell you that rewards like this abound in the warren-like malls and arcades of Fremantle. No chain store ennui here. 

Around the corner on William Street, Fremantle Opals’ slick display and service shows why it’s won the Fremantle Chamber’s Retail Excellence Award for two years running. They’ve got jewel-coloured opals from around Australia and pearls from the north, set in all imaginable ways – rings, earrings, cufflinks and pendants. Not belly bars or ear lobe rings, though. That’s more the domain of The Piercing Places across the mall. And what you can’t find in body bling here is probably not worth having.

Funky threads
Harking back to the Kathmandu style first made fashionable in the 1970s? Nomad Gnome in Fremantle Malls has the solution in full technicolour. Drop-crutch pants, jackets, dresses and skirts in cheerful colours and prints are made to order in Nepal, for folks who like to dress in a way that’s not dictated by this season’s trends.

Spun tunes
Further down the mall, Junction Records offers great fossicking potential, with its shop full of new and second hand vinyl, CDs and DVDs. Having been around for 20 years, they’ve witnessed the ever-evolving music scene and have lived to see the rise (again) of vinyl, and the changes in music buying habits. Specialists in classic rock and psychedelic music, they’ve got plenty for the dedicated flicker-through.

When it’s time to get off the feet, Parlapa will be cooking up an authentic Italian lunch, and The Federal Hotel will be standing by to quench your thirst. And all without leaving this one compact patch of off-strip Freo.

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Stevie and Amy shopping @ Retro Vinnies|Rocka-Billy's Retro|Reloved|Broken Doll|Yeah Vintage

Fremantle vintage shopping trail

Fremantle has the highest number of vintage, retro and ‘op’ shops per square metre! You’ll find the stalwart in a cluster around High Street East & Josephson Streets.

In recent years a wave of curated and specialist vintage & retro stores have opened across the city. Current hot spots are in places flagged for redevelopment in the next couple of years including Woolstores Shopping Centre and the space now occupied by MANY 2.0. Right now there is an abundance of shops across Fremantle.

Find inspiration from local fashion bloggers and stylists to start your vintage expedition #vintagefreo #vintageoutfit #truevintage #vintageinteriors

Sourcing classic individual or one off pieces made from quality materials without the need for too much rummaging has made the curated vintage store big business.

There’s a huge production behind the scenes sourcing stock for these shops; from hours digging through op shops right through to importing stock from Japan, Korea and the US. You’ll pay a premium but the sifting and digging has been done for you by someone with an experienced eye.

Celebrities, fashionistas, bloggers and social media are also fuelling vintage style with vintage clothing now influencing fashion trends. Dedicated vintage shoppers are on the lookout for that special find to complete an outfit.

Under 25’s are loving the 90’s casual vibe while the over 35’s are looking for authentic pieces from the 50’s and 60’s.

There’s also a market for restyling and re working vintage finds to appeal to a modern market–right now the hottest trend is in denim. Think appliqued jackets, overalls, aprons and denim cut-offs. Find inspiration from local fashion bloggers and stylists to start your vintage expedition #vintagefreo #vintageoutfit #truevintage #vintageinteriors

Celebrities, fashionistas, bloggers and social media are also fuelling vintage style with vintage clothing now influencing fashion trends.

The Explore Fremantle vintage shopping trail takes you on a self-guided walking tour of the city to find all things vintage, retro and one of a kind; from fashion and accessories, books and vinyl, right through to interiors. We recommend allowing a whole day and planning for a few coffee + cake pit stops along the way.

Happy hunting and don’t forget to share your posts on social @Fremantlestory.

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Kate Hulett, MANY project manager and owner of Kate & Abel|Fit out in progress at MANY 2.0|MANY 000 - Elaine Bradley Ceramist|MANY 2.0 - Vintage Space|MANY 2.0 - Anya Brock's space

Move over MANY 6160, Make way for MANY 2.0

The dynamic retail collective housed in the old Myer building has a new home. From March 2017, the eclectic pop-up with a difference is bringing new life to the old Spotlight building on Adelaide Street.

When it first opened in October 2013, nobody quite knew how long MANY 6160 (then known as MYRE) would inhabit the building vacated by the department store. Six months? Nine? More than three years later, the temporary concept store (a mix of retail and makers workspaces) is still busy incubating independent businesses. It’s part of an emerging trend in retail that shuns the bland, soulless shopping centre vibe in favour of a fresher, more experimental approach.

“MANY has been a huge, important and interesting project,” says project manager Kate Hulett of its first incarnation in Kings Square. She names the unusual nature of the building and the cooperation and flexibility of its owner Sirona and the City of Fremantle as contributing factors to its success. “Where else would you find 20,000 square metres of space to do something like this? And where else would this work but in Fremantle?”

MANY 6160 has housed an evolving line-up of retailers selling hats, artwork, vintage clothing, retro furniture, artisan lamps, jewellery and footwear. Its rooftop has seen two new bars, a couple of motorbike shows and at least one wedding. Its basement has witnessed everything from mini golf to an acclaimed art gallery to performances by Falls Festival DJs. Upstairs, furniture makers, costume designers, upholsterers, surfboard makers, metal workers and artists have toiled away on their own projects, in the company of like-minded folk.

It’s one of the hallmarks of MANY, says Kate. Unlike other small businesses where people work alone, the retailers and makers here can talk, connect and sometimes collaborate as a result of the communal space. As well as nurturing a vibrant community, MANY is a way for people to test their businesses without taking on prohibitive leases.

For customers, the benefits lie in the variety, the original wares and the accessibility. People can wander between shops, read books or enjoy the café without feeling pressured to buy. Kate sees it as a space where mums, grandparents, hipsters and teenagers can feel equally at ease.

Vacating the premises for the Kings Square redevelopment (the space will become mixed use office and retail) has brought a new opportunity: to reenergise another dead space with a new-look pop-up.

Overseen once again by Spacemarket, the Adelaide Street space has a similar vibe but a different look. Retail stores laid out on the diagonal, for example. The café (opening soon) will front both the retail floor and the outside lane near Westgate Mall. It’s hoped that regular events will take shape here.

The makers have embarked on a diaspora of their own. Some have moved to studios at the old Fremantle Police Station (cleverly renamed MANY 000), while others plumped for a warehouse at North Fremantle’s Matilda Bay Brewing. Others still are headed for East Perth.

In Adelaide Street, MANY’s retail philosophy holds. MANY 2.0 prides itself on being an outlet for hard-to-find, often handmade items that are unique to Western Australia, in a space that feels interesting and creative.

“It would be hard to manufacture the feel of MANY in a cold, new building,” says Kate, who has relished revitalising the derelict Spotlight store–which will be demolished within the next two years for new apartments–into MANY’s next temporary space.

“There’s no sadness in the closure of the old place. It’s exciting to have the opportunity to refresh.”

MANY 2.0 opens it's doors for business Thursday 16 March. Shout out to the project partners Yolk Property, Spacemarket & the City of Fremantle for unlocking another underutilised building and bringing it back to life. An official opening with all the bells and whistles is planned for Saturday 8 April. 

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Ottoman Empire, image Rachael Barrett|New Edition Bookshop|The Record Finder|Tahnee Kelland (MANY6160)|When Kara Met Rex (MANY6160)


Are you one of those super organised folk that has their Christmas presents wrapped up and tucked away before the frenzy hits....or are you leaving it to the last minute? Fremantle (and surrounding mini strips) is full of inspiration for gifts you’d be hard pressed to find anywhere else, if you know where to look...and we do.

We’ve written a special blog to help you (re) discover the joy (seriously) of a shopping adventure that is unashamedly Freo centric–the inside goss on where to find that special something whether it be for Great Aunt Mabel or your best beloved. At the same time you’re supporting local shop owners that have curated and sourced gift ideas to entice and inspire. It’s all right here in this gorgeous town.

North Fremantle

Antique stores, surf wear and SUP shops, homewares & collectibles; it’s an eclectic mix along Queen Victoria Street and up Stirling Highway. Try Blu Peter, Electability, The Black Truffle and Plata Bonita just a bit further past the Dingo Flour Mill (word on the grapevine is some of the Dockers have picked up a few pressies here).

 Blu Peter and The Black Truffle - North Fremantle

Knutsford Street Precinct

In the warehouse district bounded by Stack, Wood, Knutsford and Amherst Streets; where treasures from world sojourns ready to be discovered. Look for Ottoman Empire and Shedwallah or find locally grown and made wares for your home or garden at the new Stackwood studio.

Hilton and O’Connor

There’s a couple of Freo’s best kept secrets just out of the CBD. Plan a visit to Anna Chandler Design on Zeta Crescent–the warehouse is full of her signature ranges of homewares, a riotous celebration of colour and texture. Pickers and Collectors Bazaar has just opened on Blamey Place and Hobby Tech Toys on South Street has the best range of remote controlled cars, planes and drones for little and big kids.

Wray Avenue Precinct

After ordering your Christmas turkey at Frank’s have a little mosey around this precinct at the intersection of South Terrace and Wray Avenue. Between Pekho wear + wares, Luce Del Sol (for stunning swimwear), Indi + Em, South of the Border and Mercer Cycles you can expect to cross off a gift for most on your list and you might pick up a nice Chrissie frock at the same time.

South Fremantle

Corner Store (and Flower Hound) reside in the space known as The Coop on the corner of South Terrace and Price Street–it’s a Christmas shopping destination in itself. Venture further for Source Gallery, Vanilla Gifts and Homewares, Banjarra Tribal and Ginger Morris. At the end of the terrace pop into South Beach Cycles for the classic sparkling new bicycle with all the trimmings and a final pit stop coffee at Third Wheel right next door.

East End

FAC’s Christmas Bazaar on the first weekend in December is the event to catch in this end of town where WA’s local designers, makers and artisan’s present their wares in the gorgeous grounds of Fremantle Arts Centre. Don’t stress if you happen to miss this shopping event as there’s a great range of gifts and books available every day at Found.

Central city

There is plenty to uncover in the heart of Freo. We’ve put together some favs from some of the shopping categories...a mini directory if you like but there’s plenty more here.

Books–New Editions, Bill Campbell Second Hand Books, Chart & Map Shop & Paper Bird

Fashion and shoes–Hype DC, Bob’s, Hunter Store (MANY6160), Eros, Morrison, Three Stories

Gifts–Remedy, Oxfam, Blue Bhudda, Pigeonhole, Compendium & Pickled Fairy

Homewares and furniture–Il Cibo, Home Provedore, Empire & Amaize Homewares

Jewellery & accessories–Kartique, Kailis Pearls, Creations Jewellery & Fremantle Opals

Markets–Fremantle Markets, Kings Market & Bazaar

Menswear–Warrens, Terrace Men, Bousfields & Europa Sport & City Beach

Music–Record Finder, Mill’s Records, Junction Records & Music Centre of Fremantle

Popups & collectives–MANY6160, Common Ground & Artisan

Vintage & retro–Bibi Vintage, Broken Doll Vintage & Retro, Get Lucky

And best yet...between them all you can sit and enjoy a restorative cup of something served up with a scrumptious treat at one of Freo’s quirky cafés–just to keep you going that is.

**We hear that free parking Santa will be in town again in December–if you see him he’ll pay for your parking**


Fremantle story
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Fremantle Fashion Collective Campaign (Wild Horses) at the Round House Fremantle|Megan Salmon signature store, Queen Victoria Street Fremantle|PS Art Space, Pakenham Street Fremantle|Eros Clothing, Market Street Fremantle|Harper's Emporium, George Street East Fremantle

Fremantle Fashion Collective

This spring, Fremantle Festival will celebrate everything fashion, culture and the arts with a slew of curated events that run for 10 days, featuring a range of high quality and thought provoking ticketed and free to the public events, including my favourite – the annual sell out Fremantle Fashion Collective on 4th November.

This year The Fremantle Fashion Collective will once again present its runway show to the local community, the media and industry at large at the local creative hub, PS Art Space (pictured below: otherwise known as Pakenham Street Art Space), showcasing 7 Fremantle based fashion designers including: Wild Horses, Pekho, Little Dove, KINN, Empire Rose, Megan Salmon, Yuuki and retailer, Harpers Emporium.

Tickets to Fremantle Fashion Collective’s premium runway show are so sought after that when I called the designers to ask some questions, they begged me for the ticketing information so that they could swiftly buy theirs for friends and family haha. This ‘ain’t no media release fodder people, tickets sell out fast!

Empire Rose and Harpers Emporium

So how does one get tickets to revel in this glory? Well before I get to that sweet spot, it has to be said that the WA fashion industry has Fremantle to thank for some of its most successful and longest standing fashion designers. The likes of Empire Rose and Megan Salmon began their fashion careers in Fremantle in 1996!! And it goes without saying that there is definitely something in the water in Perth’s port city with the likes of muso John Butler, actress Emma Booth, model Tahnee Atkinson, music producer/ frontman for Tame Impala Kevin Parker and author Tim Winton, all born and bred in Fremantle at the mouth of the Swan River, the gateway to the West.

To find out more about Freo life, I called one of my friends who just so happens to be Kathryn Cizeika, none other than owner, designer and founder of Empire Rose to have a chat about the upcoming event and to get some insight into what inspires her. What I got was a heartwarming Fremantle story of her beginnings as a high school student designing clothes from the age of 15. That is where she met her life-long friends (think a foursome version of Romy and Michelle but with layers instead of lycra).

“I am a Freo girl through and through. I love living by the beach, the multicultural vibe and the scene here. All my friends are in Freo and speckled throughout the industry. We all still live, dine and shop here and love nothing more than to support the local businesses in Freo.” And by ‘we’ she means the likes of model agent and scout, Christine Fox of Vivien’s Model Management (discovering Gemma Ward is just one of her career dot points), Penny Sedgwick who started Department and now owns Freo’s, Eros Clothing and Leith Groves who is founder of retail heavyweight, Varga Girl and a soon to launch online store.

They all met while at high school at Fremantle’s John Curtin High and have remained besties ever since. After taking herself through uni and working her way up via retail merchandising, Cizeika opened her first studio in 1996 with the launch of Empire Rose. 20 years later she is one of the most successful designers in the industry and will showcase her wears at the Fremantle Fashion Collective on November 4th.

Amazingly, 1996 was an important year for Megan Salmon also, who’s first foray into fashion began with the creation of label ‘SPPPSSP’ with fellow Fremantle based designer, Rebecca Paterson. The label only lasted 4 years but she was hooked! When I asked Salmon if Fremantle inspires her design, she replied, “I adore and love Fremantle and could never live anywhere else. I love the bohemia and it is a part of me in that way.”

The Fremantle Fashion Collective not only celebrates local fashion designers and retailers, but engages with many local creatives from event staff behind the scenes, to the campaign crew which was made up of an entirely Freo based team. The campaign shoot took place at the iconic Round House with photographer Songy Knox at the helm, model Teagan Joffe from Chadwick Models wore the collections and was primped and preened by local salon Djurra, with make-up by The Make-up Factory. As you can see, the images perfectly reflect the beach-side lifestyle and vibrant culture Fremantle is famous for.

Thanks to major sponsors, Gage Roads, Chadwick Models and campaign photographer Songy Knox, the event is set to be the best night out for the local community and wider industry–get on it!  TICKETS AVAILABLE HERE.

Special thanks to our guest writer from Style Voyeur

Style Voyeur
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