Payton Hogan and Chira Gransby open a retail store and bookstore on Hindley Street.
On a sunny Wednesday morning in an airy CBD cafÃ©, Chira Gransby pushes her friend and business partner Payton Hogan a paper carrier bag across the booth.
The bag is filled with printed materials and trinkets sourced from the Adelaide Comic and Toy Fair, which Payton, who studies writing and sociology, was unable to attend for professional reasons.
âThere were a lot of authors there, self-published. I was so devastated that I couldn’t walk. But now I have some of your books, thank you, âlaughs Payton and nods to Chira.
Chira, the tattoo artist at Halfpace Studio, put the goody bag together as both an act of friendship and commercial exploration. She and Payton are about to launch Twenty Seven – a new manufacturer-focused retail store opening on Hindley Street.
Twenty Seven features zines and self-published works by young and emerging authors from around the country, as well as fashion and housewares from small manufacturers.
Payton first came up with the idea for the shop when evaluating post-graduate opportunities for writers.
As an employee of a large bookstore chain, Payton knows that up-and-coming authors don’t have enough shelf space.
“I have a feeling that most bookstores only stock authors who are following the traditional publishing route,” says Payton.
âPart of the reason I wanted to start my own bookstore was because I wanted to support independently published authors or even budding authors. Anyone who needs a space to say what they’re working on.
âI don’t like the exclusivity; I think that’s a big disappointment with writing, so hopefully we can help deconstruct that a bit. “
There is a great demand from young creators for such an opportunity. At Halfpace, Chira has set up a small retail outlet where customers can browse the waiting room stocked with clothes and jewelry.
It quickly turned out that Chira knew more people looking for a retail store than they had in stock.
“I started to make more friends who said, ‘Can I store next to this item in your room?’ And I think: ‘I don’t have any more space,’ âsays Chira.
“And the more Payton talked about the idea of ââa bookstore, the more we realized that it would be wonderful to mix these things together and also give these artists I speak to a chance.”
The store opens on Wednesday October 27th and Chira and Payton made announcements on Instagram of their first batch of retailers.
So far they have announced the ceramists Wonky Pottery and Clay4Cuties, handmade hats from Stoopid Art, jewelry from Cavehoney and Dorkus Design, housewares from Soft Ware and Cush Coma, print material from the illustrator Maybe Boy and t-shirts from Nevari.
Twenty Seven has around 20 dealerships so far and they are still accepting expressions of interest. However, they will wait until they are open before committing to adding more inventory.
Chira and Payton hope that Twenty Seven will become a point of contact for people who want to help young artists buy art for themselves or as a gift for friends. They also plan to keep prices accessible to a younger population.
“We have a business model where we take as little as possible to make sure that the artists themselves are the winners, because I think that’s how a space like this should work,” says Chira.
Twenty Seven will also host workshops presented by local creatives who have a special interest in the zine community.
During last year’s lockdown, Chira founded Index Adelaide, a social media-enabled post-zine swap that also hosted a physical zine market at the Chateau Apollo in December.
Chira says they noticed a slump in the local zine-making scene since Format shut down and longtime Zombie Queen Zine Swap founder Haneen Martin moved to the Northern Territory, but they hope Twenty Seven will pick up on the legacy .
“We’re trying to help revitalize it … because Adelaide hasn’t had physical space to store this type of work in probably six or so years,” says Chira.
âNow that we’re promoting we have these types of items in stock, more and more people are popping up in the community, which is amazing, or people saying, ‘I want to start making them stock them in Your room “which is great.”
Most of all, Chira and Payton hope that Twenty Seven will become known as a place where people are comfortable to spend time – be it shopping, learning a craft, or just browsing.
âIt would be great if we could have more queer-centric spaces that aren’t about nightlife, drinking and partying and the like,â Payton says.
âAll of this is important, but I think it would be great if there was more variety.
âWe both have ideas for the type of space we want to furnish, and this is the year-long trial pop-up phase. We have so many ideas about the kind of space we could end up creating. “
Located in Suite 4, Level 1, 9A Hindley Street, Twenty Seven is open Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Saturdays from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Fridays from 2 p.m. to 7 p.m.
The store will officially open on October 27th from 11am to 4pm.
Connect with Twenty Seven on Instagram.