Fifty Shades of Grey: Is Claytons Supplies a Real Hardware Store?

Working as a salesgirl at Claytons Supplies store in the 2015 film ‘Fifty Shades of Grey,’ Anastasia “Ana” Steele encounters mysterious billionaire Christian Grey in the Portland hardware store. Having met the man in his office for an interview earlier, Ana is dumbfounded to see the entrepreneur strolling down the aisles of her workplace looking for strange items. The atmosphere in the shop is electrified by the chemistry and tension between the pair. Although the store appears briefly, it provides an insight into Ana’s work and the extent to which Christian is prepared to pursue the woman, begging a look into the store’s actual origin!

Claytons Supplies and Ladner Village Hardware

Claytons Supplies is a fictional store in ‘Fifty Shades of Grey.’ Developed by E.L. James, the author of the 2015 novel of the same name, the store was adapted to the screen by James and co-writer Kelly Marcel. After their initial encounter during the interview, Anastasia is surprised to run into Christian in her regular day-to-day routine at Claytons. The billionaire is fixated on her and visits the store to stock up on his hardware supplies of rope, cable ties, and tapes, which, unbeknownst to the protagonist, consist of his requirements for BDSM play.

While Claytons is described as the largest independent hardware store in Portland in the novel, its cinematic counterpart was actually Ladner Village Hardware in reality, located at 4821 Delta Street, Delta, British Columbia. The real-life building, constructed in 1950, was home to the hardware store last run by owner James Price. During filming, Price was hesitant to allow his shop to be a location within the erotic film’s narrative, given the story’s subject matter. “I have an adult daughter, and she told me, Dad, this is a really big deal,” he said. “So I read the book, and once I found there was no bad or sticky parts happening in the store, I thought there was no reason to not have them in.” After shooting, the owner dedicated a particular spot in his shop for ropes and cable ties to cater to those interested.

However, as of 2017, Price’s store underwent a permanent shutdown due to inventory reasons. “My main supplier of product is closing operations, and I won’t have a primary source for goods,” said the shop owner in 2017 during a conversation with Delta Optimist. “There are other small suppliers, but the main supplier who sells me all my seasonal goods that I rely on has decided to close up shop,” he explained. Nevertheless, as Price retired after establishing Ladner Village Hardware as a local staple for 16 years, he remained grateful for his customers and the relationships he has built over the years. Thus, fans can unfortunately no longer visit the real-life counterpart behind Claytons Supplies.

James Price and his Ladner Village Hardware Store//Image Credit: The Globe and Mail

The fictional store offers a small glimpse into Christian’s personal and private lifestyle underneath his clean and pristine exterior. Shopping for his bondage play material at the local hardware store illustrates his obsessive nature with equipping himself with the proper implements. It’s not unlikely that higher-end stores could not provide what he needs. However, his small-business excursion offers a clever disguise for his real reason: pursuing Ana, who had piqued his interest earlier during the interview in his office. It is within the business magnate to narrow down the young woman’s daily lifestyle and the places she stopped in during her day.

As such, what seems like a coincidence is more a well-designed ploy. Therefore, despite playing a small part in the setup of the film’s erotic narrative, Claytons Supplies addresses Christian’s sexually adventurous nature and the charged tension between him and Ana. Furthermore, its actual basis during production at the Ladner Hardware store in British Columbia offered a real and tangible depiction of the on-screen store. Still, the latter retains fictionality in its conception.

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