Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Previewing the Christmas magazines

Yes, it's that time of year when all the Christmas magazines start appearing on the newsstands. Now I *have* to read them because that's where I get lots of ideas and inspiration for my job, so if you're not a magazine junkie yourself, I thought you might like to know which ones I find to be must-reads so far this year. My favorite, by far, is titled Food Gifts, one of the Better Homes and Gardens Special Interest Publications. Although it's one of those pricey $9.99 issues, I think it is worth every penny, and if I could buy just one new holiday issue for the year this would be it. Why? It is simply packed with useful, do-able and incredibly creative ideas for packaging gifts (food gifts, specifically, but the ideas could extend to other gifts as well). I love a fun package almost as much as the gift, so I am just bowled over by the ideas in this magazine. My favorite is an old parchment paper box that has been beautifully scrapbook-papered to serve as a presentation box for mini-muffins. Brilliant! Brown paper bags are given a creative treatment with papercrafting punches (I can do that!), and a casserole is given the royal treatment with a pretty holiday tea towel and twine. Love, love, love this magazine! And did I mention it has 150 recipes too? Wow!

And I had to share this one idea for tea lovers: fill an empty glass teapot with Apple Pie Spiced Hot Tea Mix (recipe included in the magazine) and tie with a miniature knit scarf. Wouldn't a tea lover be thrilled to get this for Christmas!

Several Christmas cookie/baking/recipe magazines are now out, but I haven't been impressed with any of them but this one. Christmas Cookies (another Better Homes and Gardens book) is $5.99 and has a scrumptious selection of cookies, with many unique recipes I haven't seen a hundred times before. There are recipes for cookies for those on special diets, and my favorite section features recipes made using lemon curd! This is a great cookie magazine if you're a cookie lover - or giver.

Although I read Southern Lady regularly, I haven't always purchased all their holiday issues. The new Southern Lady Holidays, however, is a beautiful issue and is packed with great decorating ideas and creative color palettes. In fact, I'd say it was the "color" that made me buy this magazine, especially the spreads featuring icy blues and bright magentas. If you're a "tablescape" lover, this is a magazine you won't want to miss. It sells for $7.99.

And finally, this cheery red teacup caught my eye on the cover of the new Holiday Bliss magazine from Victoria Classics ($7.99). The folks at Hoffman Media wisely figured out there are those of us who would love to see more photography from Toshi Otsuki and the other photographers from the early years of Victoria magazine. This issue revisits some of the wonderful old Christmas photos, so Victoria lovers will certainly want to add this to their collection of Victoria magazines.

If YOU have come across any wonderful Christmas issues, please share the titles with the rest of us!


  1. I see that at least two of these mags (first & last) will have to be added to my burgeoning collection of Christmas magazines. ;-)

    Thanks for the review.

  2. I am a magazine addict and I admit it. Is there some sort of rehab for confessed magazine addicts? If not, I'm ready to purchase Christmas editions, thanks to your great reviews!

  3. Oh, thanks for the review. I think I am also going to be on the lookout for the first and last magazines!

  4. I particularly like the Hoffman Publishers' magazines (LOL - I have *every* issue of Tea Time ever published!), and so you might be interested in their Christmas Cottage magazine which is available for pre-order right now! It looks wonderful! The Christmas Tea Time issue is beautiful, too. :)

  5. Wonderful reviews, Angela! I love so many magazines, all of the ones you mentioned, to be sure.
    Thanks for the heads-up, Joanie

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  7. I spent so much time at Kroger reading the new Christmas mags that I forgot to buy food! I too liked all the clever ideas for food gifts.

  8. oh angela, I cannot believe I have gotten so far behing in reading your posts. Must have been a busy week, I guess. Anyway, I am going to seek out some of these magazines. Thank you for the interesting reviews.

  9. Now I must run to the book store once again to get yet another Victoria Classic. Like Linda J., I am a magazine addict.


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