Monday, June 6, 2011

Things I love: A Random Series #1 - Magazines

The bedroom pile

Whenever I embark on a slash-and-burn spending ban (and being a profligate spendthrift, I am forced to do this regularly in order to get back in the black) the first things I try to cut out are those little bits and pieces that don't cost much in themselves, but add up if you indulge in a lot of them - cappuccinos, buying lunch, little cakes for morning (and - let's be honest here - afternoon) tea on market shopping day, and of course, magazines. And it's always the magazines that have me crashing and burning within a fortnight. I am an addict.
The lounge room pile, next to the Tray of Mystery

Ever since I was old enough to spend my meagre early 1980s pocket money on Dolly, I've been a magazine junkie. This was the height of the British New Romantic era (Duran Duran, Spandau Ballet, Japan..) and my English grandmother would send me Smash Hits every fortnight. This was SO cool, because the crappy Australian version was a long way off, so I was the only one of my circle who had the latest news about the British musicians we all loved. I was CUTTING EDGE. I knew everything there was to know about Bananarama, Heaven 17, Human League, a very young Madonna... oh, those were the days.

The kitchen ones are a bit more neatly ordered. All cooking mags, of course.

Eventually I graduated to Cleo and Cosmo, then picked up others here and there depending on what I was into at the time. In the 90s I was a film buff, so I read Empire, Premiere, Movieline, and Neon. Then I built a house and got hooked on Home Beautiful, House & Garden, and a huge number of British home decor mags. I tell you, when it comes to magazines, the Brits do it best. Best Marie Claire, best Empire, best house mags, best knitting mags. We should stop trying to do our own crappy, inferior versions here and just import way more copies of the good stuff.

Random strays that have found their way into the Box of Mystery

I have never been keen on American magazines (too many ads), with a few exceptions. The long-departed Movieline had some great indepth interviews with actors and directors, excellent columnists and the hilariously mean Joe Queenan. Though I've never been that much of a music fan, late 80s/early 90s Rolling Stone was brilliant. And of course, we have America to thank for the best (only?) makeup magazine  - Allure.

Noodles has recently started her own little collection. I call her Mini-Me!

These days I've given up trying to give up magazines - I love them too much to ever let them go. What I have done is resist the temptation to buy trashy ones, and limit myself to (my idea of) good quality magazines with plenty of interesting reading.


  1. Love it when the mail box is full of mags! I'm not as diverse in my magazine reading as you are, but I am subscribed to at least 6 magazines right now.

  2. I used to be a magazine junkie. Now that I don't have the time or money to buy and read them all (and I suddenly realised I was cringing my way through Cosmo), I've limited myself to Frankie, Madison and the occasional Vogue or Marie Claire. I'm lucky that my boyfriend can't get enough of music & film mags so I can get my fix there. d:

  3. Ahh I'm a mag junkie too, so is Dom (he's got a huge first edition collection) he's got his computer/golf/mens health/art mags and I've got my fave fashion/beauty mags - Russh was my fave until about 4 yrs ago when they had some overhaul/changed publishers (it's never been good since) Now I love UK Vogue, Harpers Bazaar, InStyle :) I'd love to come across another mag akin to Russh (in it's former glory) but it's yet to happen.

  4. wow, great collection! They are all so very well organised!

    I have quite a collection of National Geographic that I have collected over a couple of years. Sounds stingy but these days, I buy beauty magazines only if they have good freebies!

  5. I used to be a magazine devotee, but I really don't buy them much unless there's a freebie involved these days. I loved having a look at your collection though! How do you get them so neat??

  6. You're not alone. I easily spend about $100 on magazines each month! Cooking ones, parenting ones, fashion ones, trashy celeb gossip ones.

  7. I love Allure too and have a subscription. I also subscribe to US Glamour mag. You're a woman after my own heart :)

  8. I had an addiction too but I had to stop as I never get time to sit down and read through them so the pile of Glamour was getting insane. I do love cooking mags though

  9. How nice to know I'm not the only mag junkie out there! Su and Sarah, I don't quite know what you mean by neat and well-organised. The cooking ones are all on a shelf in the kitchen, but all the others are just piled up higgledy-piggledy all over the house, lol. :-D

  10. I had to stop, I started piling too many up and never getting to them and the guilt was way too much ;)

  11. I love magazines too and am devastated my local Borders shut down so I can't read as many of the expensive ones for free...

    Allure is my all time fave and I have every issue since 1998. I also have every Australian InStyle. My other faves are Lucky, US InStyle, UK Elle, Shop Til You Drop, Madison and I have a Grazia subscription.