By Alesha Capone
Local artists and designers will be showing and selling their wares at a new pop-up retail space in Werribee, which will open on Thursday.
Wyndham council has launched the MADE on Watton pilot project in a vacant store, located at 90 Watton Street, to support residents in the creative industry who have been hit hard by the COVID-19 pandemic.
The curated, market-style shop features original, high-quality handmade textiles, stationery, ceramics, homewares and jewellery.
The pop-up space, which will run each Thursday to Sunday over the next three months, will have a rotating line-up of stallholders to keep the offering fresh and exciting.
Wyndham mayor Adele Hegedich said as well as supporting local creatives, MADE on Watton was part of the council’s recovery efforts to bring people back to the Werribee city centre, activate retail spaces and keep local jobs.
“We know that our local creative industry has done it tough over the past year and it has been particularly challenging for those emerging artists and designers who would normally do their businesses through markets and stalls,” Cr Hegedich said.
“MADE is an exciting and innovative pop-up space that will put the spotlight on our amazing local designers and makers this summer and will also give shoppers a unique experience where they can meet and buy direct from the source.”
Creative city portfolio holder, Cr Marcel Mahfoud, said that for every $100 spent in the local economy, $67.16 stays in Wyndham.
“If you shop online from a non-Wyndham retailer only $4.17 stays here,” he said.
Cr Mahfoud said MADE on Watton was inspired by similar successful models in Newcastle and Adelaide.
“Council is very keen to support, cultivate and advance the creative industries in Wyndham,” he said.
“Short-term pilots such as MADE on Watton are excellent ways to test and trial initiatives to see if the industry and the community want to see more.”
Cr Mahfoud said that MADE on Watton was a cashless store, and will accept payment via debit and credit cards.
Applications are still open for stallholders wanting to showcase their works in March.
For more information, including shop opening times and the stallholder application form, go to www.wyndham.vic.gov.au/madeonwatton