Founding a Free Magazine at the Age of 78

Ayumi Ohashi and Her Little Magazine

收到大橋步寄來的小雜誌,欣喜不已。今年三月,聽說她出版的《大人のおしゃれ》(大人的時尚)要停刊了,有點失落,卻又有點期待。雖然《大人的時尚》這份小雜誌只出版了17期,但因為是跟著大橋步的時裝品牌 a.、a.a.及A.推出新季時裝時同步發行的半年刊,所以其實也經營了八年了。八年間,透過這雜誌讀到她對生活及美的傳釋、認識她認為出色的人物、聽著她談日常生活,突然停刊,感覺就像老朋友忽然移民外地般,難免失落。

I was absolutely delighted when I received the small magazine sent by Ayumi Ohashi. Earlier this year in March, I heard the news that Ohashi’s The Grown-up’s Fashion magazine (大人のおしゃれ) would no longer be published. This made me a bit sad but at the same time filled me with a certain kind of expectation. The Grown-up’s Fashion is a half-yearly magazine that was published along with the new collection of Ohashi’s brands a., a.a. and A. Therefore, although it has altogether merely 17 issues, the magazine is in fact 8 years of age. In the past 8 years reading her magazine, I have learned about her interpretation of life and beauty, names of people she admires, as well as her way of living. The sudden news about the magazine ceasing publication is saddening. It felt as if an old friend suddenly decided to move abroad.


My unhappiness was soon taken over by a sense of expectation. The former illustrator Ayumi Ohashi founded the Arne magazine at the age of 62. Having no prior experience in running a magazine, she simply carried her tiny compact camera and visited artists she was fond of alone. Ever since the publication of the debut issue, she has been determined to run the magazine for 30 issues before shifting her effort to something new. After the final issue of Arne, Ohashi started The Grown-up’s Fashion magazine at the age of 70. I sincerely believed Ohashi would have other projects coming after The Grown-up’s Fashion, for that reason, I was simply over the moon to have received the Little magazine from her today.

《Little》的內容比《大人的時尚》或《Arne》都要簡單得多了。才不過八版的小雜誌裡,沒有任何需要刻意費工夫採訪的內容,只介紹了與大橋步合作的工匠、她到訪過的小店、她喜歡的食物及書等。另外,也有她的好友Daniela Gregis及她忠愛的Comme des Garcons新季作品的選物。名為「今天的我」的,則是大橋步的圖文專欄,淺談她的生活小事。雜誌比以往都單薄,文字內容也簡短得很,我猜大概是她因應自己的時間表及體力,將內容縮減了,縮減至她獨自能輕鬆應付的份量。60歲,日本人的退休年齡,大橋步卻在這之後展開了一項又一項新的創作項目,以自己的步調,邁進她的第二人生,享受著一段段嶄新的旅程。


Little has an even simpler content when compared to The Grown-up’s Fashion and Arne. Instead of pre-arranged interviews, the 8-page magazine basically talked about the artisans she worked with, the shops she went to, the food and books she likes. Ohashi also recommended a few items from the new collections of her close friend Daniela Gregis as well as her favorite brand Comme des Garçons. The column titled “Me Today” is where Ohashi writes and illustrates the minor events she experienced. Her new magazine is thinner and has less text than the preceding ones. I assume she has made some adjustments based on her schedule and physical strength so as to limit the workload to something she can handle at ease. While an average Japanese retires at the age of 60, it was the age when Ohashi started kicking off various new creative projects, one after another. Working at her own pace, she started a new chapter of her life and is enjoying the new adventures coming to her.

It is never too late to start something new, just give any of your new ideas a try.