Few buildings in WA have histories as interesting as the Fremantle Arts Centre's. Since it was erected in 1878, the gothic, convict-made building has had many lives. It's been a lunatic asylum, a poor house, and since 1973, a bustling arts hub, albeit one some people believe is haunted.
One of its biggest attractions is Found, a gift shop that exclusively stocks WA-designed ceramics, jewellery, clothes, stationery, textiles, jewellery, books, toys and homewares from more than 100 local artists, designers and artisans.
There’s no better place in town to find unique gifts, especially for Fremantle lovers. There are silver cufflinks sporting the iconic North Fremantle Dingo, T-shirts emblazoned with the port’s red cranes and multicoloured shipping containers, plus watercolour prints of Leighton Beach sunsets.
A handful of products never last long on the shelf: whimsical notebooks from Mokoh Design, tea towels from Blue Lawn Designs made just down the road in the Pakenham Street Art Space, and etched jarrah serving boards from Future Shelter.
As shoppers wander about, the sounds of rustling tree leaves, kids playing and the clink of cutlery filters through from Canvas next door. Shopping doesn’t get better than this.