Look at these covers: One is from March, 1880, which was found in an antique shop, the other one is from February 2011. Isn’t it remarkable how life and culture have changed in only 133 years? My great grandmother was born in the 1880’s and I knew her. It might sound like the ancient past, but when measured in generations, it’s actually not that long ago.
Harper’s Bazaar is not a magazine I usually read, but it was interesting to compare the two.
The focus of Harper’s Bazar in 1880 is on fashion, homemaking, furniture, needlecraft, a novel and surprisingly a bit of politics and other news. There was actually stuff to read! The issue from 2011 is concerned with fashion, other people’s lives. We also have the privilege to see naked famous people unretouched by photoshop.
These are the top 5 articles from the online version:
- Top Spring 2011 Trends from New York Fashion Week
- 100 Top Looks from New York Fashion Week: Spring 2011
- SAG Awards 2011: The Best of the Red Carpet
- The Naked Truth: Nude Celebrities, Unretouched
- Barbra Streisand: Dream House Photo Shoot
The March 1880 edition features three articles on its cover page:
1. A reverie, which is the description of the picture of the cover page
2. Cleaning Frosted Silverware
3. How to Lay Out and Plant a Flower Garden
Articles include short stories, news from around the country, a novel, needlework and a recipe for “Salt Sulphur Muffins”. (Wikipedia tells me that sulphur is used in fertilizers, black gunpowder and matches….and there’s no salt in the muffins. Hopefully it refers to the color of the end result.) Here’s the recipe if you want to try them out.
All the illustrations from the older magazine are lithographs. Here’s the double fashion spread.
However the big difference is that the 1880 version also includes politics, news concerning the supreme court and other social and political events. The only politics mentioned in the current issue is what designer Michelle Obama is wearing.