By now we've all heard the news. In fact you couldn't go anywhere this week without encountering discussions of Domino's imminent demise. Reactions in blogland have ranged from 'good riddance' to 'good God, no!' but I for one have avoided the topic altogether--simply because talking about it makes it feel real, and I don't want it to be real. Domino wasn't always a perfect magazine; indeed, as my passion for design has evolved, other publications have replaced it as my favourite. But Domino was the magazine that sparked that passion, and as such it will always hold a special place in my heart.
Cassandra said it beautifully when she described Domino as 'the one magazine to make design accessible and simple'. Truly, holding an issue of Domino in your hands was like holding a key to a world previously open only to an elite few; the magazine was an exuberant and approachable trail guide for discovering the vocabulary, the references, and the courage to find your own design personality. Domino espoused a boundaries-free approach to decorating---blurring the lines between interiors and art, fashion and photography---thereby encouraging readers to find design inspiration wherever they darn well pleased.
Domino opened our eyes to the endless possibilities of design as a force for social good. From uniting style with sustainability to showcasing independent designers and artisans, Domino played a huge role in the emergence of the now thriving green and handmade movements. Sure the shopping guides were fun and the pictures were pretty, but the lasting impression that Domino has left with us is a deeper appreciation for the power of design to make our world feel more safe, more welcoming, more like home.
Domino not only changed the way we think about design, it has forever impacted the way that we speak and write about design. With a roster of editors and columnists who felt like real people---like friends even!---Domino's talented staff approached their subjects with equal parts gravitas and good humour. Their message? Don't take this too seriously. Have fun. Create a design experience that is both intimate and inclusive, that learns from the past and that looks to the future, but that above all reflects your truest self.
The result? Page after page of gorgeous interiors. Subtly communicated lessons about design history and ideas for respecting that history while making it our own. The feeling that we too could paint our walls, set beautiful tables, find joy in our homes--without having to be paragons of domesticity. As I flipped through the pages of my old issues last night, I revisited images that I have come to know and love from the portfolios of my favourite photographers: Paul Costello, Mikkel Vang, Ditte Isager, Roland Bello. Had Domino not attuned my eyes to the magic of a well-composed room, an unexpected color palette, a surprising source for inspiration, I would not have the ability to appreciate these photographers' work now. So thank you, Domino, for opening the doors to this world of history and harmony, empowerment and play. You will be greatly missed.
All images courtesy of Domino Magazine.