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Published February 11th 2016
Some businesses just begin from the heart. A funky new cafe has opened in Ashwood run by a young vibrant couple (Crystal Fickers and Trishay Trada) and filled with upcycled furniture, cushions and even a bowl of water to keep your furry friends happy near the door.
Delicious fair trade Produce. *Image courtesy of From the Art
It is first and foremost a cafe, but it is much more than that, should you choose to dig a little bit deeper, you will discover an entire business built on fair trade, integrity and a desire to assist others.
It is a colourful cafe, complete with hand painted decorations including soy candles, jewellery, colourful bags clothing and baskets. Yet it is also a space where people can be comfortable that appeals to artists and diners alike.
Friendly faces to chat with you. *Image courtesy of From the Art
An added bonus, is that you can eat with a clear conscience here as all of their food is vegetarian - even the roast duck! Try it, you'll have to find out how for yourself. Their food is sourced from Aussie farmers.
Saturday special - Lebanese Za'atar pizza with vegan cheese, sun-dried tomatoes and avo smash.*Image courtesy of From the Art
One of the owners, Crystal has a degree in human rights and explained that the space allows people to be empowered and to sell their items for a fair price, whilst the cafe supports local families and communities. They reach out even further, including their staff including asylum seekers and people from disadvantaged backgrounds.
A welcoming staff member - Jana on her second day! *Image courtesy of From the Art
They specialise in organic tea and coffee sourced from fair trade STREAT, which works to assist the homeless in Melbourne.
Blended in with great food and coffee, you will find ethically made cards, notebooks and jewellery scattered around the tables, creating a holistic space with everything designed to help make the world a better place including biodegradable bin liners for their trash.
Is your cuppa empty?? There are free coffee or free tea vouchers in the worldvegandaymelbourne show bags! *Image courtesy of From the Art
One of the things that Crystal loved sharing with me is that all of their fair trade suppliers have remarkable stories and as such, everything in the store carries a tale with it. One interesting item has been sourced from Cambodia, where they were literally made out of old bomb casings.
The suppliers had melted down the brass from the bombs and turned them into beautiful jewellery. The artistic story behind this is that they are taking a symbol of destruction and turning it into a symbol of beauty within the world.
Fair trade gifts give twice! We've got loads of lovely ethical items for sale in our sweet little shop. Stop in for chat and learn more about where your gift items are made! *Image courtesy of From the Art. Photo cred Matr Boomie
They hire staff from all over the world and assist to give all of them a fair chance in life. They have gone out of their way to hire people from different walks of life who are happy to work there and to share stories about where they have come from with you. Creating a global community whilst connecting with local neighbours.
The business is firmly built on ethics, sharing and love to swap trades. One of these trades involved a resident artist who runs nearby mosaic classes and in exchange for From the Art promoting her business, she created a mosaic sign for the store. Installing it was another trade which included a local tradesman to install the sign on the wall in exchange for a meal. The idea being to bring a human connection to everything within the business.
From the Art store and cafe are open Tuesday to Sunday from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. and you can call them on 9807 5158
Address: 1/3 Yertchuk Ave, Ashwood VIC 3147, Australia
Phone: 61 3 9807 5158
Hours: Open · 9AM–7PM (Closed Mondays)l
Great menu selections. *Image courtesy From the Art