I will admit right off the bat that I was never into magazines. I mean, as a kid I had my mother subscribe me to Nickelodeon Magazine because it was Nickelodeon Magazine! As a tween, I was subscribed to J14 after continually buying them at the newsstand. I used to love collecting all of the posters of pop stars and tacking them to my wall. As a teen, I stopped J14 and used to get Elle Girl instead until it was discontinued, which really bummed me out because I really enjoyed reading Elle Girl. Then last year while I was cleaning out my room, I found an old stack of Elle Girl magazines. I started reading through them again before I recycled them into art journals, and it made me miss reading magazines. Honestly, Elle Girl was my IT magazine and I really missed having a rag to look forward to every month. So, I went online to search for a suitable replacement. Amazon is wonderful for subscribing to magazines. Really, you can subscribe to all the popular ones for about $10 for the first year. It’s great to try out magazines without paying the newsstand prices. I decided to subscribe to Nylon, because from reading reviews, it seemed like the closest to what Elle Girl used to be (and I don’t like those fashion-only or celebrity-only magazines, which rule out A LOT). So for $10, I got Nylon for the year.
The first two issues I received and read through cover to cover were alright. I was still adjusting to my new magazine and I think I was just in that hazy phase of “Oh look! A new magazine for me to devour!” But after awhile, I started to feel bad–like slightly offended–after finishing an issue of Nylon. It was weird at first, this feeling I used to get into, but then I realized it was because I just finished reading about tons of people who’s lives are so great that I should really be aware of their greatness and that I should care. It’s really weird, but that’s how Nylon magazine started to read to me. Granted I’m not into fashion, but I do love music and film, and most of the issues I got, a lot of the interviews were on musicians and actors. The editorials I’ll just skim through and take in the pictures, but the interviews I would read intently. And while most of the people featured in Nylon may do cool things, I was slightly put off by the obnoxious pretentiousness of it all. The articles read like that. They read as if I should really care about so-in-so celebrity taking about their new film or album while they play with their kale salad as they sit in some ritzy hipster place in Williamsburg. I was some how totally offended by the tone even though in the end, I didn’t really care how awesome they thought so-in-so celebrity was. So, when my renewal letter came in the mail, I tossed it. No more Nylon for me.
So, as my subscription is coming to an end (the May issue will be the last they send me), I felt the need to search again. I like magazines. I like the feel of them, the design (Nylon’s design is very edgy and awesome), the way I can just settle down somewhere and read them, turning each page after taking in everything. It’s very nice. I just didn’t want to give up that calm hobby of reading. But searching for the perfect magazine is hard! I wanted a lifestyle magazine about fashion, film, music, and literature. I wanted everything Nylon does but without the pretentiousness. I wanted something with meaning that I do care about. In the end, I couldn’t find any of this in an American rag.
So I turned to Frankie.
Now, I had already known about Frankie Magazine for a while. I read their blog daily and while it isn’t the magazine, it was cute. I never went out to buy the magazine because it’s from Australia and at the time of discovering Frankie, I didn’t know where to find it in the States. But after some research, I found two promising international magazine shops in New York that carried it. The last week of March, I went out and bought my first issue of Frankie, Issue 57, the January/February 2014 issue.
I love it!
Frankie is absolutely wonderful! It’s such a refreshing read. It has everything I like, plus some really inspirational articles about different people and cultures. It’s not solely about celebrities. Sure, they interview musicians and actors and such, but then there are those articles about the last remaining women in China who had their feet bound, or the one about the women who created a project where she travels and takes pictures of families in rural village areas of the world and give them their first family picture. These articles are so great because it takes you out of your world and you get to see how someone else in a different part of the world, from a different culture experience life. It’s very humbling and it makes me feel good to read. Even the interviews with photographers, fashion designers, artists, and musicians are inspiring. The writers of Frankie don’t just talk about all the awesome things these people do, but they delve deeper and talk about their origins, about their cultures, what inspires them and how their upbringing made them who they are. Nothing about these interviews are obnoxious or come across as pretentious. They aren’t trying to make these people seem wonderful, they just are wonderful all on their own; it just comes across that way naturally. And that’s what makes Frankie beautiful and so great to read.
I highly recommend Frankie to every woman who likes lifestyle, fashion, music, culture, crafts, art magazines. Frankie is like a hybrid of all those things and more. It is pretty pricey in the States (like about $15 an issue) and you have to wait forever for the new issue (7 weeks after it comes out in Australia), but it’s worth it! They publish 6 issues a year and it’s my goal to start building my own little collection of Frankie starting this year. I’ve got the first two so far (Jan/Feb and Mar/Apr) and have to time it right to get the others when they come out. And though going to the magazine shop to pick it up does make a small dent in my wallet (I never come out of the int’l mag shop without buying another magazine from some other country along with my issue of Frankie. Really, it’s a bad habit I need to break), it’s all worth it for the countless hours of calm, pure delight!