The Sticky Institute is all about zine culture. Think Richard Neville and Martin Sharp, think counterculture, think 1960's underground press. And indeed, a small shop aptly located in the Melbourne underground - just along the Degraves Street Subway - Sticky's will transport you back into an era of badge-making, typewriters, and print with attitude.
It isn't so much about making a political statement - although contributors are certainly free to do that too - so much as making a statement. Spend a couple of hours of your Saturday perusing the shelves (and eye-catching window display, as pictured here: Sticky Institute Window Display) which are stocked with zine titles that range from 'Praying 4 U' to 'A Fist Full of Comics' and which are full of subject matter as diverse as the punk music scene to daily observations about the world. You're bound (mind the pun) to find something that suits your literary fancy, and with prices beginning at only $1.50, and making their way up to $15.00 at most, there'll be plenty of room in your budget for you to take some reads home with you.
Why not make a zine of your own? A photocopier is always on hand - or, rather, in corner - for the plucky zine-maker to create (and later stock and sell) their own work (Sticky only takes a 20% commission). Or, if zine-making doesn't appeal to you, you can spend a few minutes re-acquainting yourself with your typewriting skills on one of Sticky's three typewriters, which are available for you to use at your leisure (pictured here: Typewriters). If your inner Dickens or Wolfe refuses to let go, why not spend the rest of the day typing away, churning out The Next Big Literary Masterpiece? The shop assistants are as laidback as they are friendly - which is to say, very - and the shop is open on Saturdays from a cool 12 to 5 p.m.
Better yet, for only 50 cents a pop, you can get as controversial and propaganda-esque as you like (or not, if you prefer not to) with Sticky's handy custom badge-making machines (as shown here: Handy Dandy Badgemaker). If you're unfamiliar with the process, the assistants are happy to show you how, but it won't take long before you're churning out funky accoutrements like a pro. Just bring in a picture or draw your own; it's all about you and what you have to say.
Before leaving, take a quick peek through the Sticky Exchange box, where the only requisite to taking an item out is that you put something in. Much like the shop itself, you never know what gem you might find.