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Favorite holiday issues of magazines or special holiday issues?

I'm addicted! I adore cooking/ crafting magazines, but what I love even more are holiday cooking/ crafting magazines! What are your favorites? For some reason, I always get really nostalgic and get into the whole homespun Christmas ideas. I always like all of Martha Stewart Living's ideas, from unique food gift wrapping (I love the gingerbread gift tags that are shown this year) to all the baking recipes. (I did a little happy dance at the mailbox yesterday because it's the first Christmas issue of any of my magazines that I've received!) A few years ago I picked up a special Holiday issue of Family Circle, which I usually don't care for, but this particular issue is awesome and I still use it for ideas! My mom has a Gooseberry Patch Christmas book from years ago that has some wonderful ideas too, although their newer books are cheesy. Has anyone picked up some particularly lovely issues this year? Anything I need to be on the lookout for?

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  1. Not this year, but 1995, there was a special Martha Stewart Living Holiday cookie edition I bought that is really good. It's more like a slim booklet than a magazine; not the same size as the regular publication, I don't think, with a sturdier cover and thicker pages. It has a white cover with a large gingerbread snowflake cookie on the front. It has tons of recipes for all categories of cookies (rolled, dropped, bar, refrigerator, etc.), from simple/quick to elaborate/time consuming, some very seasonal and some you'd want to make any time of year. There are some really interesting flavor profiles and ideas. Plus, of course, plenty about gift wrap and also storage, packing, and mailing. Unfortunately, I haven't had a chance to try much from it yet, but I hope to bake more from it for the holidays this year. Libraries probrably have it.

    1 Reply
    1. re: Caitlin McGrath

      Last year (2005) I bought a Martha Stewart special holiday cookie magazine (but it sounds like the one you got, too, sturdier cover and pages). I was so whacked out after NaNoWriMo (where you write an entire novel in November) that I needed something to fill my free time. I ended up trying about 12-14 of the 50-60 recipes, and I've already had family asking if I'm going to repeating some of them this year. Some were normal types of cookies, while others were a little more exotic. If you see a version of this magazine (I don't think there's one this year, I've been looking), snag it, it was well worth it.

    2. For a few years Fine Cooking did a special Holiday Baking issue but sadly they stopped after XMAS 2004. However, the December issues do have many holiday-ish recipes. The current issue (#82) has a lot of dessert recipes. Haven't made any yet but some look really good. Fine Cooking baking recipes work very well.

      Sorry, can't help with any craft-type things.

      1. Every year I look forward to two: Saveur and Real Simple. Saveur in January of every year is a special issue listing all of their upcoming favorites, which includes recipes, travel locations, specialty food items, chefs, gadgets, etc. Real Simple in most issues show me something very practical that I can easily incorporate. I would imagine the December issue would have holiday themed helpful ideas.

        3 Replies
        1. re: schuylar

          Ooh, yes, Real Simple is a good one too! I bought a Better Homes and Gardens special Holiday Baking issue, but it's pretty yucky... lots of semi-homemade stuff, which isn't really the point of holiday baking for me.

          1. re: Katie Nell

            That surprises me - I've bought a couple of BH&G special holiday cookie (only) issues, in maybe 2003/04, and been very happy with the recipes there. Definitely not semi-homemade, and I've found real keeper recipes.

            1. re: Allstonian

              I know, me too... to be honest, I didn't even look at it in the store, just assuming I would like it!

        2. I always look forward to the Dec. Gourmet for their cookie recipes.

          1. I just picked up a special holiday issue of Martha Stewart Living called "Holiday: Handmade Gifts" at Barnes and Noble and it is awesome! If you are looking for inexpensive handmade gifts for the holiday season, this is an excellent resource! Everything from beautiful peppermint marshmallows to gorgeous quickbreads, all with wonderful and inventive ideas for packaging! I'm definitely going to use some of the ideas in this one... it was just what I was looking for this season!