A moment of silence for a grand old magazine. Condé Nast has announced that House & Garden magazine
is shutting down after 106 years. The magazine will cease publication with its December 2007 issue. The move came after the publisher recently left. Condé Nast is still going strong with Architectural Digest and with Domino and the new Vogue Living. Fashion Week Daily brings up the fact
that in 2004 when Condé Nast bought and then folded YM they converted the subscribers into Teen Vogue readers and that a similar thing may take place here.
Certainly over the past few years, House & Garden hasn't seemed quite as luxurious as it once did. Without the boozy reminiscences of one Jay McInerney, there really isn't that much in the magazine that can't be found elsewhere, especially in Arch Digest, which with the heavier and glossier paper and more lavish photography makes it more of a magazine set for taking up residence on the coffee table (and which was the magazine that did H&G in for the first time when it folded in 1993
after Condé Nast acquired AD). Also in terms of the two magazines websites, Arch Digest is the far more streamlined and contains more eyecandy images and video.
My question is whether or not the traditional "shelter" magazines in general are in trouble. There are several key indicators that could indicate that this is the case. The first would be the unsteady real estate market and the fact that many people are cutting back on renovating or remodeling their homes because they are not certain that they will receive a return on their investment when the sell. Also younger home owners are more and more accustomed to getting their home information and inspiration on the web where a variety of sites offer not just images of homes but the chance to immediately purchase the things you see and to submit your own pictures and receive feedback and help. Also as more and more people think about sustainable living and greening of their homes they might be inclined to turn toward Dwell. What shelter/lifestyle magazines do you read and do you think this is just an isolated case of Condé Nast trimming the fat or a more endemic problem effecting the entire industry?