If the recent closing of Australian weekly fashion magazine Grazia tells us anything, it’s that the print business is tough - even with corporate backing. Which is why the latest print venture for Christina Dietze and Nick Thomm can be perceived as incredibly brave.
While you may not have heard of Dietze, chances are you've seen her. A Sydney-based model signed with Chic, Dietze has not only graced the pages of magazines but has gained a loyal online following via her fashion blog SRC783, a name spontaneously derived from her car registration.
Those who have typed in the blog's url recently would have noticed though that SRC783 the blog exists no more. Instead, a thick black, white and bright green covered magazine edited by Dietze and art directed by Thomm, lies in its place.
"When I went to Nick with the idea to start a mag it was because I wanted to create something more tangible," describes Dietze of the initial idea. "I love to follow blogs but I just felt SRC783 was ready to move forward as a brand."
"A lot of magazines try and tell you what’s cool right now or whatever," adds Thomm. "We just wanted to say this is what we think is cool, and hopefully people like it. We want to make something that is more inspirational rather than seasonal fashion."
Such a refreshing and honest approach may be the trick to publishing in the future. Where most mainstream magazines dictate the trends via celebrity focused content and advertiser-influenced shoots, Issue Zero of SRC783 offers no rights or wrongs when it comes to fashion. Glitter covered faces and skirts made out of stuffed toys are open to interpretation by the reader. And so far, there's not an ounce of advertising or promotion, with Dietze and Thomm self-funding the magazine – a brave move.
"I decided to showcase designers that I admire and wear myself," Dietze tells of the magazine's fashion content. Within the pages are notable local labels like Di$count Universe, Makers of Belief and Emma Mullholland, as well as pieces from her enviable wardrobe. "I will always use my own vintage pieces mixed with labels. I like to think of the magazine as a guide for girls to create their own original style with whatever they have, not based on current trends."
While Issue Zero's main focus is directional fashion, it also comprises other subjects such as music and art. In a sense SRC783 is pure and unapologetic in it's direction. Its message is less about selling clothes and more about selling an idea. Each page is put together by the duo, free of submissions from outsiders. According to Thomm, coming up with the content was an incredibly natural process. "We both had a really similar idea for the direction and it just happened from there."
Both based in Melbourne, the two came together through a mutual friend that worked at Thomm's studio, The Drop. Naturally, The Drop played a convenient part in making the dream a printed reality, particularly with Thomm 's experience across graphic design, photography and video.
Since its release, the feedback for Issue Zero has been incredibly positive, and ironically, online. But while fashion and life continues to flourish online, Dietze is adamant that there is a future for magazines, albeit an evolutionary one. "Things will become digital but print will still exist, maybe as more of a luxury. Maybe all the crap magazines will die and the good ones will live on. Hopefully we aren't one of the crap ones. That would be nice."
SRC783 magazine is published quarterly. Issue Zero is available to purchase now at src783.com.