i-D magazine #15, March/April 1984


Format: Magazine

Country: UK

Year: 1984

Price paid: $1

Purchased at: The Record Archive, Rochester NY


The link between fashion and popular music is not a tenuous one. Hell, whole books have been written on the subject. Arguably one one of the high points- a ‘nexus’ if you will- would have had to have been in London during the first New Wave period (1977-1985.)

id_march84aI have not the time nor skill to unweave the complex interactions between the two, but I will say that magazines such as i-D and The Face were barometers of cool back in the day, and valuable glimpses of times past today.

id_march84cStarted as a mere fanzine in 1980, i-D magazine was almost instantly recognized for its cutting edge use of photography and topography. Editor Terry Jones is credited with codifying the ‘straight up’ style of fashion photography; i-D staff would stop trendy people on the street and take head-to-toe shots of what they were wearing.

By 1984 the magazine was still shaking on its baby legs, as they had only made it to issue #15. The size of the magazine had changed several times during the years, by this point it had grown to a larger 8 1/2 X 11 3/4″ format. The edgy claustrophobic design of early issues remain however, with text crammed in every corner, to the extent that it begins to overlap and fall back on itself.

The cover is done in acidic blues, pinks, and oranges. Florescent ink was used; sadly these colors don’t scan very well and cannot be replicated onscreen so you’ll have to use your imagination when viewing the images in this post. But trust me, they positively scream. The cover model was an all-but-unknown musical artist known as Madonna. This was supposedly her first UK magazine cover; rather handsome values today reflect the desirability of this key issue.