Review: Anthology Magazine
I first became aware of Anthology magazine not long after it launched in 2010. I was impressed and surprised that two women were launching a print publication in a time when nearly every other publisher was going digital. The extent of their bravery was revealed when I looked at their business model. Instead of setting the lowest price possible to increase circulation and then selling as many ads as the publication could fit, Anthology sells a very limited number of ads and sets the price at a more sustainable $12 per issue. Despite this positive initial impression, it still took me two years to pick up an issue.
I wish it hadn't. I read a lot of shelter magazines, but I think Anthology is special. Whereas other magazines show beautiful things and list the corresponding designers, Anthology tells stories. The articles are about the homeowners and what their homes mean to them, more so than the pedigree of the objects in the home. The magazine's tagline is "Living with Substance and Style" so each article also features an attainable travel destination, a recipe (complete with a corresponding narrative) and spotlights on makers of interesting products (like these surprise balls for example).
Like most magazines, each issue of Anthology has theme. More than most, Anthology really embraces the issue's theme; it's noticeable in every article. For example issue nine - the music issue - features the home of a songwriter in Texas, the story of a ukelele maker, and a feature on Nashville (no wonder I like it.) I like the consistency this provides each issue, although I suppose some might desire a more eclectic mix.
Because it is so story driven, and because it's a fairly new publication, Anthology has a more personal feel than a larger publication. It's clear it's a labor of love for the founders and all contributors. The featured homes have the same vibe; they're typically designed by the homeowner, rather than an interior designer, and are full of items that - what else - have stories.
As mentioned above, at $12 an issue, Anthology magazine is a splurge purchase compared to many magazines. I'm happy to spend a little extra money on quality though, and Anthology is a magazine of quality. It's printed on thick, matte paper stock and the graphic design has a timeless look. Issue five has an entire illustrated feature on an artist's home!
Overall, I would highly recommend Anthology. Since stumbling across issues four and five at West Elm, I have gone to Anthropologie for nine and ten - the only two they had left - and have subscribed for the next year. I'm regretting missing out on so many issues!
Anthology Magazine is published quarterly and is sold at Anthropologie and random stores worldwide. For subscription information, visit their website at www.anthologymag.com.