Wednesday, 18 April 2012

Mag hag

So, I've talked before about how much I love magazines but how much I hate the thinly-veiled contempt for their readership that passes for much mainstream women's media.  One of the things I am most excited about regarding my move to Colorado is a whole new set of mags to read; I have heard good things about Lucky, anyone come across it?  If I focus on easy access to Bust and Bitch, the loss of my Saturday Guardian fix might be less painful. 

This article on (from which I shamelessly stole the awesome collage at the head of this post) about 15 women's magazines that don't suck really reminded me of how much good media there is out there.  It's just a shame that it's swamped by the dross. 

This Easter I was excited to find two new magazines to write about though...

Bust is super-hard to find in the UK since the demise of Borders, but Gays The Word bookshop in Bloomsbury came up trumps last week (although it is the Jan-Feb issue, but beggars can't be choosers and all that).
Coverlines ... Style secrets of fashion rebels; Craft it up - easy apple pie (very yum, I can attest), cute crayon rings, adorbs (ugh, I hate that 'word') aprons.
For women who like the look and feel of glossy women's magazines but want one that doesn't seem like it actually hates it's readership (cf. most other women's mags)
Wants you to buy Softcup menstrual products; a hand-drawn plate from Etsy for $43.50; cushions whose proceeds go to support marijuana reform laws (you don't find that in Elle or Marie Claire). 
Reading it I feel like punching the air and shouting "yes" while reading the oh-so-important What To Expect When You're Expecting An Abortion article.  Bust may be glossier, shinier and more mainstream than Bitch, but don't let the Hollywood stars on the cover fool you: it's just as kickass feminist.  I love the fact it combines crafting tips and recipes with pop-culture commentary and more incisive articles.  My favourite thing?  The postcard trumpeting a subscription special offer, which at only $14.95 is totally going to be the first thing I buy when I arrive State-side in July.

I'd never heard of Cloth until I spied it in Salt's Mill bookshop, Saltaire, last weekend.  Full of sewing ideas and patterns, and at only £3.50, it seemed worth a try.
Coverlines... Cool makes, flirty fashion; Free shift dress pattern.
For women who live in the Midlands or North of England.  I say this because, compared with other craft mags, Cloth seems refreshingly full of shops, classes and workshops outside London and the Home Counties.
Wants you to buy The Liberty Book Of Home-Sewing, £20; Eurostar tickets to Paris to explore the craft scene there, as promoted
Reading it I feel like I want to love it more than I do.  All the ingredients are there - a surfeit of practical projects and patterns (one of my pet peeves with Mollie Makes is that it's overly-reliant on nice photos but doesn't give much actual crafting guidance); an interesting article about a charity providing sewing machines to women in the developing world - but for some reason I'm not feeling it.  Most of the projects are taken from books, including the aforementioned Liberty one, and as I have a huge stack of sewing books I've already come across at least half of the ideas.  Definitely a good magazine if you don't have a library of books to refer to at home, but otherwise it might prove to be surplus to requirements.

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