Selvedge Magazine Review

Selvedge is a somewhat famous sewing magazine which I have glanced at longingly since taking up sewing, but its also quite pricey (£12 an issue) so I have never owned a copy.

According to their website:

Selvedge is a design-led, 100 page, bi-monthly magazine that covers every facet of textiles – interiors, fashion, art, craft, travel and shopping – in an intelligent and inspiring way.

They also have an expensive looking shop, both online and in London.

I asked for a magazine for Christmas, Santa did ask if I wanted a subscription but I felt like I should take an issue for a test drive before that kind of investment. It’s a bit hard to review a magazine because obviously each issue will be different but I guess you can get a flavour of the quality of the content.

This month’s theme is Carnival.  I don’t see any carnival evident but it is focused on the traditional crafts and textile art from South America. Some of the photographs are beautiful, the design of the magazine is clean and very pleasing (think wide margins and nicely lined up photos). And some of the textile crafts are very impressive, I would love to have a job scouting for textile artisans!

I liked reading about Adriana Torres ‘the only illustrator-embroiderer in Buenos Aires’ as her work was beautiful.  And Brazilian artist Ernesto Neto’s giant crochet sculptures that people could walk through. But I did wonder if traditional South American crafts were being appropriated and sold for a shed load of cash.  On one page there is a brief history of Chilean ponchos and a selection for sale ranging from £89 to 45,360 euros- so something for every budget…Thankfully that seems like the only such advert.

I appreciated there was an article about the revival of 70’s fashion and reminiscing about 1970’s political activism, coinciding with political and economic changes that seem to be leading us away from mass production.  I was please that the writer didn’t leave the story there but pointed out that the somewhat (extremely) sexist comments of Karl Lagerfeld, for example, would suggest that the current trend is the fashion industry appropriating theat counter-culture and then selling it back to us.  I would have liked more articles like this one it sort of seemed out of place in this edition though.

I think I may buy another issue but the price tag still puts me off.  I like that there aren’t too many adverts, some of the places advertised seemed like places where I might be able to get nice presents for people in the future, but if you don’t have adverts then you have to pay a premium for the magazine.