Lin Sorenson, VP/Editorial Director of CK Media, announced today on the Simple Scrapbooks blog that the May/June issue of the magazine will be its last.
The editorial mission of Simple Scrapbooks will be combined again with that of Creating Keepsakes, where it originated from. Subscribers to Simple Scrapbooks whose subscriptions extend beyond the May/June issue will have their remaining issues fulfilled by Creating Keepsakes. Simple readers who already have Creating Keepsakes subscriptions will have their subscriptions extended by the number of issues they will be owed by Simple when it ceases publication.
Simple’s Managing Editor Angie Lucas was blunt in her statement on the Simple blog about what caused the magazine’s discontinuation:
There simply isn’t enough advertising to keep two magazines afloat. The economic situation has been difficult to say the least—and we’ve all been feeling it, no matter what area of the country we live in, or what industry we work in. I’m sure you can relate. Tough times. Tough measures.
Lucas also says that CK Media’s plan is to make Creating Keepsakes bigger to accommodate the addition of the Simple content to it, although she admits at this point that she is unsure whether it will be integrated into the magazine’s general content or have its own dedicated section. She also assures readers that their favorite Simple personalities – Cathy Zielske, Wendy Smedley and Stacy Julian – will continue to have roles with CK Media providing content both online and in Creating Keepsakes.
Unfortunately for some, this announcement comes just as Simple was about to announce a new team of Ambassadors and Simple Gals. Lucas pledged in her statement to announce the new team members’ names shortly, so they can receive some recognition for making the teams, even though they won’t get a chance to work for the magazine.
Simple Scrapbooks has long been my favorite magazine – and not just because I was one of the winners of their 2004 Coolest Album contest. To me it was always a great day to find my issue of Simple waiting for me in my mailbox. I am very saddened to find that its fabulous content is now (almost certainly) going to be diluted and limited by being combined with Creating Keepsakes.
But even more than the personal sense of loss for the readers is the alarm that this sounds for the industry. This is the second CK Media publication to shut down in the past few months. (Digital Scrapbooking magazine announced in early November it was ceasing publication.) As Lucas pointed out, the advertising market is clearly tight in the scrapbook industry, a symptom of the general difficulties in the scrapbook market right now. Who will be the next company or magazine to fall? It’s becoming obvious that even industry heavyweights are not immune from the problems in the market.