1Granary: The College Magazine Funded by Comme des Garçons
In July, Intern magazine caused a stir when interns (both former and present) produced a pulication under the tagline "Meet the Talent, Join the Debate." Meant to shed light on the ever-growing unpaid-internship dispute, the magazine accepted submissions, ranging from photography and design to creative writing and fashion, to serve as a creative outlet for emerging talent.
Although less controversial, 1Granary, the student-run magazine of London’s Central Saint Martins does just that. Named after the University’s location at Kings Cross, the eponymous student-run style blog (which received over half a million views in the past six months) has evolved into a biannual print magazine founded by now editor in chief Olga Kuryshchuk. New to the “startup” publication scene, 1Granary aims to provide students of all artistic disciplines to contribute their aesthetic.
“We have grown really quickly, and there are now around 20 of us, maybe more,” Kuryshchuk told The Daily Beast. “Everyone brings something different to the team, which is what makes it so exciting and kind of crazy at the same time. All of us are from CSM. The only non-CSM people we collaborate with are photographers, because unfortunately there is not a fashion-photography course at CSM. But nevertheless, they are part of the 1Granary family!”
The magazine combines fresh, young student talent with industry veterans through high-fashion editorials that could easily be mistaken for a spread out of W magazine or CR Fashion Book. In its first issue, for example, 1Granary pushed sartorial limits with a cover shoot entitled “The Birth Place.” Featuring model Nadia Araújo from one of London’s top agencies, Select Model Management, and a less-experienced muse, baby Daniel, the spread features a variety of clothing, from an embroidered, gothic-style dress to a red, white, and black leather jacket. Symbolizing CSM as a “creativity birth place,” 1Granary took an avant-garde approach towards the creation to life. (Plus, to avoid future conflict, the magazine carefully notes: “Any resemblance to religious symbolism or imagery is purely coincidental.”)
The spreads include informative interviews from the likes of Kate Phelan (fashion director of British Vogue and creative director of Topshop), Grace Lam (Vogue China’s senior fashion style editor), and Sharon Wauchob (creative director of Edun), to name a few. Most noteworthy, however, beyond the magazine’s name-dropping content, is its funding by one of fashion’s major players: Adrien Joffee, CEO of French label Comme des Garçons.
As much as we hoped for an extravagant, behind-the-scenes story about receiving the endorsement, when asked how they scored such major funding, Kuryshchuk simply replied: “Luck!”
Joffee “wanted to meet us, [which] is how we were able to get the advertising support from Commes. We were also super lucky to get the support of SHOWstudio and Leagas Delaney, which was really exciting.”
What is particularly intriguing, however, is not that 1Granary is student run, nor that it has received press from Vogue, Style.com, and T: The New York Times Style Magazine—but rather the diversity of its students. The masterminds behind the college mag are not simply journalism students (founder Kuryshchuk herself is a fashion-design and marketing student), but the likes of designers, stylists, graphic designers—the list goes on.
“There was no bridge between the students and the industry,” Kuryshchuk said. “We wanted to build that bridge and create a platform from which we could display students work and, in turn, invite the industry to view it and find us easily.”
Continuing to expand their social platform, 1Granary is working on outreach with a variety of events, and an art exhibition opening October 17. Plus, with the next issue due in February 2014—the 1Granary team, is thinking big: “It would be a dream to feature an interview with Katie Grand," Kuryshchuk says, referring to the editor of LOVE Magazine. "We love her! She is such an inspiration. And M.I.A. M.I.A if you read this ... 1Granary loves you!”