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National acclaim for Teesside academic’s independent publication

25 September 2023


A magazine which started life as a passion project for a Teesside University academic is growing a national audience.

Sunday Girl creator Abigail Dennison
Sunday Girl creator Abigail Dennison

School of Arts & Creative Industries fashion lecturer Abigail Dennison is behind Sunday Girl magazine, which secured television presenter Laura Whitmore as the cover star for the last issue.

The next edition of Sunday Girl is due to be launched next month with special events planned in Middlesbrough and London.

Abigail said: “I first developed the concept for Sunday Girl while studying fashion journalism in London, as I’d struggled to find publications which I felt were really targeted towards me.”

Having created Sunday Girl, Abigail secured a meeting with distributors in London which resulted in early issues of the magazine being sold in the capital’s iconic department store Selfridges.

“When I returned home to Middlesbrough, I was determined to nurture the magazine further. I am positive and see no as a challenge,” said Abigail, who has experience working for Vogue and Cosmopolitan magazines and draws from industry knowledge to inform her teaching.

Abigail added: “Sunday Girl began with the idea of intellectual girl talk and fashion, with content on current affairs, politics to feminism and health issues.

“Securing Laura Whitmore as the cover story for our last edition was just the dream. I email publicists all the time, not always really expecting a response - but then Laura Whitmore’s publicist got in touch, asking to work with us. The timing was perfect, as Laura was about to start presenting her own Sunday morning television chat show.”

Abigail added: “I was working solo on Sunday Girl for the first six years of the magazine, and it was difficult during the pandemic to keep inspired and generate content. My deputy editor Milly Hutchcraft came on board a couple of years ago.

“When I met Milly, it was a match made in heaven. She was a long-term reader of the magazine, from the very first issue. Actress and writer Nell Hudson also recently joined the team as contributing editor.”

Abigail and Milly recently successfully bid for grant funding through Teesside University’s Launchpad FUEL programme, which offers support to fledgling businesses created by students, staff and graduates.

“We want to keep Sunday Girl based in this region, no matter how big it might get. The magazine provides a space us to work with talented creatives from across the region, while our launch events are a celebration of womanhood and provide an opportunity for our readers to network, connect and feel inspired,” said Abigail.

The Middlesbrough launch event on Sunday 15 October will feature a panel of inspirational speakers, including sustainable fashion trailblazer Jade McSorley. A week later a launch event will be held in Market Peckham, in London.

Abigail has also been involved in this year’s Festival of Thrift, working with Teesside University fashion graduate Harry Tribe and fashion students to promote and celebrate sustainable fashion.

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