Fashion Magazines

The magazine is naturally in business to make money. The biggest advertisers are not necessarily the ones with the best merchandise. A sort of compromise is effected between the advertising department and the editorial board of any fashion magazine. In return for every ten editorial pages allotted to the wares of advertisers, a half a page is allowed to the wares of non-advertisers.

There have been magazines which decided that a good snappy editorial department brought a certain kind of reader and the readers brought the advertisers. Therefore the editorial department must not be influenced by the advertising department. I have never known of a straight fashion magazine that was run in this way. I believe it could be done.

It seems to me the experience of the New Yorker proves it. The New Yorker is not a fashion magazine, heaven knows and thank goodness. It, nevertheless, sells a fair amount of space to fashion advertisers who want to have its readers know about them. It is the policy of the New Yorker that the editorial department and the advertising department must not speak to one another. Lois Long writes as she pleases and goes to see what she feels like in the fashion mart.

From Fashion is Spinach, by Elizabeth Hawes

On Fashion

Style is that thing which, being looked back upon after a century, gives you the fundamental feeling of a certain period in history. Style in Greece in 2000 B.C. was delicate outdoor architecture and the clothes which went with it. Style in the Renaissance was an elaborately carved stone cathedral and rich velvet, gold trimmed robes. Style doesn’t change every month or every year. It only changes as often as there is a real change in the point of view and lives of the people for whom it is produced.


Style in 1937 may give you a functional house and comfortable clothes to wear in it. Style doesn’t give a whoop whether your comfortable clothes are red or yellow or blue, or whether your bag matches your shoes. Style gives you shorts for tennis because they are practical. Style takes away the wasp-waisted corset when women get free and active.

If you are in a position to deal with a shop which makes your clothes specially for you, style is what you can have, the right clothes for your life in your epoch, uncompromisingly, at once.

From Fashion is Spinach, by Elizabeth Hawes

Photo by London Scout


On Style


On top of style there has arisen a strange and wonderful creature called fashion. He got started at least as far back as the seventeenth century when a few smart people recognized him for what he was and is. “See’st thou not, I say, what a deformed thief this fashion is?” Mr. Shakespeare demanded in Much Ado About Nothing. But nobody paid any attention.

From Fashion is Spinach by Elizabeth Dawes

Photo by Camila Damásio