TOUGH MONTH: Ad pages continue their slide through April — especially at the core fashion books, according to the latest figures from Media Industry Newsletter. All of the women’s and men’s fashion magazines lost 20 percent or more ad pages in the month. Despite featuring Men’s Vogue as a special flip cover on the issue, Vogue still carried 42 percent fewer pages (152) than in April 2007. Among other women’s titles, O, the Oprah Magazine carried 94 pages in April, 42 percent less than a year ago; Harper’s Bazaar declined 28 percent to 114; Allure gathered 35 percent fewer pages, or 104; Cosmopolitan’s pages dropped 32 percent, to 105; W declined 49 percent to 75; Lucky’s pages fell 31 percent, to 112; Glamour reported a 24 percent decline, to 154, and In Style carried 27 percent fewer pages, with 255.

However, some titles have improved their paging during the month. In the women’s service category, Ladies’ Home Journal reported a 16 percent increase in pages, to 136, while Family Circle reported a 12 percent gain, to 169. Family Circle is one of the few books posting an increase year-to-date, having grown pages 8 percent, to 498. More, another Meredith Corp. magazine, reported a 12 percent increase for its April issue, to 92 pages. Reader’s Digest carried 78 pages, three more than in April 2007. People StyleWatch carried 65 pages this April, 11 more than in last year’s comparable issue. Aside from the corporate sales packages Meredith can create across its titles to help boost business, the gainers also benefited from packaged goods and pharmaceutical ads, which tend to favor larger circulation, mass market magazines.

This story first appeared in the March 23, 2009 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.

— Stephanie D. Smith

TO THE NATION’S CAPITAL: Robin Givhan, staff writer at The Washington Post, will be moving to Washington to cover Michelle Obama, the First Family and the assorted cultural and social issues that surround them. Givhan, who currently is based in New York, told WWD she’ll continue to write a weekly column that will focus on fashion but that could include anything from a designer, the shows or a “politician looking especially appalling.” Givhan is taking over for DeNeen Brown, who will now focus on stories about people “on the edge,” such as the poor, the uneducated, the disenfranchised and “race in the age of Obama.”

— Amy Wicks