While 2020 has certainly brought its challenges for Fuse Gallery, it has also brought a few reasons to celebrate.
The Cessnock hair salon moved to a brand new location in May; celebrated its 20th birthday this month and has been named as a finalist in the Hunter Local Business Awards.
Fuse is now located at 176 Vincent Street, previously home to Cessnock Motorcycles and Caine's Produce.
Owner Mel Clark purchased the building three years ago, and when business slowed down due to COVID-19, she decided the time was right to finally make the move.
Her husband Nigel has done most of the work to fit out the shop. Records found at Cessnock Library trace the building's history back as far as the 1920s.
"We wanted to pay homage to the old building," Mel said.
"I'm really enjoying the restoration process.
"It gives us a real sense of pride - being a local business, employing local people and supporting our local community."
The new salon boasts a stunning mural of 98-year-old fashion icon, Iris Apfel, painted by Newcastle artist Dan Bianco (watch the video here).
Future fitouts will include beauty therapy rooms, an upstairs loft, and a separate space for Mel's homewares and clothing boutique, The Quirky Chair.