It's curtains for HG, magazine of interior design

April 22, 1993|By New York Times News Service

HG, a leading decorating magazine since its founding as House & Garden in 1901, will cease publication after its July issue, Conde Nast Publications has announced.

"They had a beautiful sensibility about interiors and they really were always right on target about what was happening," said Stephen Sills of Stephen Sills and Associates, a residential and commercial design firm. "It's the end of an era."

HG was done in by its chief rival, Architectural Digest, which officially became part of the Conde Nast family Tuesday. In a deal announced last month, Conde Nast acquired Architectural Digest and Bon Appetit from Knapp Communications for $175 million, giving rise to widespread speculation about whether Conde Nast could profitably publish both HG and Architectural Digest, two of the leading interior design magazines.

When the Knapp sale was announced, Bernard Leser, president of Conde Nast Magazines, said that HG would not be closed and would co-exist with Architectural Digest. But Tuesday it was a different story.

"We don't think there is room for the two magazines in the present market," he said.

HG is the first core Conde Nast magazine to cease publication. Vanity Fair was discontinued during the Depression but resurrected by the company in 1983.

The news that HG would cease publication rippled through a meeting of the American Society of Magazine Editors in New York on Tuesday.

"It went like wildfire through the group," said Dorothy Kalins, former editor in chief of Metropolitan Home. "It was like the death of a friend. No matter how much of a competitor they were to me, they were like the worthy adversary on the hill. I think everybody was shocked."

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