"A magazine of unhurried time, all about doing things differently and making new choices. Small happiness, daily life and the beauty of not always managing to be perfect. That is how Flow began. Flow is all about positive psychology, mindfulness, creativity and the beauty of imperfection. We love illustrations and in each issue there is a gift made of our much-loved paper. We print the magazine itself on different types of paper."
The magazine is the inspiration of friends Astrid and Irene. Flow is a visual feast, unlike any magazine I've ever seen. It is as if the women decided to make the very best magazine they could, sparing no expense by using gorgeous paper, filling it with beautiful inspiration, insightful articles, and spotlighting artists and their work. All of that, and the magazine is printed on various beautiful papers and includes freebies like paper garlands, window clings, prints ready to frame - the goodies vary by issue. There are very few ads and even those are artistic.
This isn't a magazine filled with how-to tutorials. I think of it as an inspiration - beautiful illustrations, thought-provoking articles and wonderful bits of knowledge. How else would we know that the Rijks Museum in the Netherlands allows, no, WANTS people to download images of their collections and make the works their own with drawings, collage, stamping, painting - whatever moves you, like the pieces below. Doesn't the little red bird stamped in the middle of the serious botanical drawing turn it into something whimsical?
The page on the right is actually a window-cling made from one of the museum's pieces.
My issue also included this sweet garland.
The magazine originally was available only in Dutch, but they have recently begun publishing an English edition, available online, and there are some issues on Amazon. All this goodness doesn't come cheaply - a one year subscription is about $85.00 for maybe 8 issues. But how many magazines have we bought for nearly that much, then flipped through and found one or two things that interested us and not much else? Flow is also on Facebook and Instagram, so it is possible to enjoy lots of goodies online and at no cost. You can also sign up for their newsletter to get a heads-up on when new issues are available.
The magazine ships from the Netherlands, so don't expect immediate gratification if you order. The ordering/payment process is a bit wonky, but the customer service is helpful. It took mine over seven weeks to arrive, looking a bit beat up when it finally made it to my mailbox.
This is my issue; back issues are also available.
Of course pencils are dear to the heart of all paper-lovers .
This is a great article about caring for ourselves, living in the moment and being kind and positive with ourselves as well as with others.
And an article about some sweet hand-carved stamps.
I am savoring my issue, re-reading articles, investigating online sites of museums in the Netherlands (don't tell me the internet isn't pure magic!), studying images, and feeling inspired.