Back in September 2014, I placed an order for the the first issue of a new erotic magazine for women called Quite Frankly. Aspiring to promote an honest, intelligent and open exploration of female sexuality, this luxurious publication was certainly made to be poured over rather than quickly consumed. If hot and well written sex blogs like Girl on the Net are the equivalent of a frantic and satisfying quickie, this magazine is the extended candlelit date night in fancy lingerie. Both are utterly glorious, yet fulfilling in different ways.
Since the magazine’s launch, the organisation behind it has become The Quite Delightful Project and, as I have now taken delivery of my copy of issue two – which is called Quite Lovely – I realised that my introduction to the project on Rarely Wears Lipstick was seriously overdue! With no time for a full review, I have decided to give you a quick intro to the project and its publications. As you might imagine, the website sums it all up rather well:
The QUITE DELIGHTFUL Project is a new venture publishing the world’s most luxurious erotic magazine and an accompanying series of monographs of photography. Designed solely by women, for women, and produced to the highest standards QUITE DELIGHTFUL publications celebrate excellence in both photography and the written word.
I ordered the launch special offer which contained a copy of the magazine itself, plus a small book of personal confession stories and two photographic monographs. The magazine is printed on both glossy and matte paper stock, stitched together with the glued spine left uncovered to reveal something that is not usually seen, much like the contents. The magazine comes in a bare cardboard slipcover with embossed lettering and an attached image which offers a glimpse at what’s inside. The confessions booklet contains stories that look like they were produced on a typewriter and is stitched along the spine with a small photo attached, as if it was in an old fashioned photo album. The monographs are printed on luxurious matte paper with cloth covered spines, and the whole thing arrived neatly wrapped with a handwritten postcard on top. The cover of issue one says that it ‘aims to tempt, tantalise and tease’ which it does before you even turn to the first page. When ordering issue two, the same bundle was available and so I couldn’t resist purchasing as the joy of opening it all – feeling it and smelling it before flicking through the pages – was a pleasure in itself. Proud to be erotic and designed solely by women for women, the editor’s letter in issue one says they aim to be stylish and beautiful… and the team have definitely managed that with both issues to date.
The contents of the magazine are pleasingly varied with photography, illustration, interviews and articles that all relate to female sexuality in some way. I was initially surprised that there were so many photographs of women (do straight women like looking at erotic photos of women?), but there were also some bold male nudes, of the type rarely seen outside gay erotica (by me, at least!), and beautiful images of a couple that were reminiscent of the types of blurry Polaroid shot older readers may well have taken ‘in the moment’ in days gone by. Issue one also contains articles about sex and infidelity, what women want, and porn as a career. Sadly the images are of mostly white, young, slender and heterosexual women, but there are a few notable exceptions and issue two improves on this even further. I have yet to fully explore issue two but at first glance a lot of the imagery appears more diverse – in the models used and the photographic styles – and also more challenging, which is exciting.
The most enjoyable part of issue one for me was ‘The Sensual Eye’ with images of ‘raw unadorned passion’, and my favourite part of issue two so far is the interview with the wonderful Dr Anna Arrowsmith. I shall let you know what else I find nestled within its pages soon… hopefully before issue three comes out! The Quite Delightful project have a Facebook page, and you can also follow them on Twitter, where their account is called Quite Briefly! I highly recommend you get yourself a copy if you like your smut to be stylish, if you love erotic photography, or if you have a fetish for beautifully designed and printed magazines.