Peel Here #6, There’s a magazine for everything…

By Shawn Robare

When I first started digging around on eBay looking for 80’s stickers to rescue from trashcans and garage sales everywhere I had no idea what I would find. I expected to find a lot of Topps sticker card sets and subsets, and hopefully a few unused stickers here and there but I just had no idea what I’d find. A lot I’ll tell you, in fact, enough that it’s almost kind of scary.

In the meager collection I’ve managed to scrounge together, the one item that still makes my head ache a little is this awesome example that if at least six people in the United States share a common interest, there will be a magazine supporting it. While looking for Punky Brewster stickers (I know they must exist, the show was just too popular not to have stickers) I stumbled upon this gem of a publication:

Yes, that’s right, Stickers Magazine, for the enthusiast who just can’t get enough information on stickers (which I fear is what I’ve become.) Holy Christ! How in the hell did an editor manage to fill this bad boy with enough information, even on a semi-monthly (or is it bi-monthly, I always forget how you say every two months with a hyphen) basis? Well, by taking a gander at this cover you can start to get an idea as we can clearly see that an interest in stickers obviously opens one up to interest in subjects such as unicorns, Hello Kitty and failed (though awesome) Disney movies. There’s even a cute balloon built right into the logo. Damn that’s precious.

Well, my fear is that a stigma that must come with collecting stickers is that somewhere deep inside you must be a six year-old girl. This is perfectly normal if you are a six year-old girl, but what about the six year-old boys, and god forbid, the 29 year-old men (gulp!) Is this a sign that I need therapy?

As we take a closer look at the contents of Stickers Magazine, Vol. 2, Issue #7, Summer 1985 we can clearly see that this magazine is very much intended for young girls as it uncovers the dirt on sticker slumber parties, gymnastics, Punky Brewster, and a bazillion other girl related topics. Now, I’m not being sexist or demeaning, I mean if you were to flip through a Summer 1986 issue of G.I. Joe the magazine I’m sure there would be riveting exposes on subjects such as “Collecting Frogs: Does it Indeed Lead to Wart Growth?” and dissecting the “A Horse Fell in the Mud: is it a dirty joke?” I’m just saying that if a boy found himself on the playground with a copy of Stickers, he better make sure that it’s tucked firmly inside of an issue of Thundercats Monthly.

Remember that you can click on the pages to make them embiggened and readable.

I’d be willing to bet that, that boy watched his fair share of She-Ra, which was conveniently advertised on the following page…

I was surprised to see that not only were the publishers responsible for the in depth Stickers, but they were also the ones responsible for bringing us the official souvenir magazine for Goonies. I wonder if they also did Karate Kid II?

The above snippet was actually sort of enlightening as it sort of answered my question of who actually took the time to collect erasers in the 80’s from a post earlier in this year. I didn’t actually ask that question out loud, but it’s been something I’ve wondered about, and now I have a nifty column to explain it for me.  Apparently it’s European kids with plenty of time on their hands after all…

Here’s a taste of the pre-Goonies press courtesy of Stickers Magazine.

Personal Expressions Stickers ad. You can be sure that I didn’t spend any of my money buying these recently…

Trend Stickers ad (from the same company that brought you the most popular scratch and sniff stickers of the 80’s.)

Would this edition of Peel Here be complete without a full article on Punky Brewster? I think not. Read on…

Sadly the gymnastics article didn’t make the cut when I was scanning this magazine in because well, there is only some much time in a lifetime and I don’t think I need to spend it scanning, color correcting and resizing a 20 year-old article on the merits of gymnastics. Or do I?

Here’s a fun coming soon page. Not only does it have some Ghostbusters info, it also has a blatant Wendy’s rip-off of both the Shirt Tales and the Get Along Gang. Fun!

The above ad is for Mello Smello stickers, the bastard cousin of Trend scratch and sniff stickers. Though in retrospect I think I like the design on these puppies better than Trend, back in the day Trend was king bling and Mello Smello stunk.

For the last scan of this amazing Stickers Magazine issue I present an ad for Nite Brites, a series of glow in the dark sticker sets that you could mail order for that look about as bad as most of the stuff you tend to get via mail order. I’d be willing to be most sticker snobs of the 80’s ignored stuff like this and instead attacked the Mello Smello, Lisa Frank, Trend, and Personal Expressions racks at local Hallmarks everywhere.

I’m not sure how long Stickers Magazine was around (though I have one more later issue to share), but it sure was amazing while it lasted. I guess. I don’t freaking know, I’m still in shock that there was a magazine devoted to stickers. I can say that I did not in fact get any of the free stickers promised as the chick who sold it to me used them and has since lost them (but managed to keep the magazine for 20 years, go figure) so I have no idea if they were super cool Punky Brewster or Return to Oz stickers, or some lame generic ice cream cones and penguins and junk.

I wonder if there is a magazine for people obsessed with 80’s nostalgia? I’d subscribe to that. Hey wait, I guess that’s kind of what I’m doing, just in a non-print form. Does this mean that in 20 years some kid who grew up reading this silly website will look back and repost my posts? Aw man, if you could only hear me laughing…

Next Week on Peel Here, Jem!

  • Savage

    I was a sticker fanatic back-in-the-day and I remember those Critter stickers. I was also a fan of the Punky Brewster show. It’s amazing that magazine made it to issue #7 only on the power of stickers. Great scans!

  • K

    HAHAHA, I absolutely begged my mom to buy me that issue and read it until it fell apart. Even now, 22 years later, some of those pages look familiar.

  • Gerrit

    Stickers Magazime ran from 1983 (Issue 1), until 1987 (Issue 16). By issue 8, the name was changed to “”Stickers and Stuff Magazine”” anyone have Issues 10-16? I would love scans of the covers for my Scratch and Sniff collector book I’m publishing :)

  • Melanie

    I know I’m finding this way late, but none the less I bought every copy of that magazine. If only I’d kept them. I do still have a copy of a “”Stickers Only”” catalog where I use to order stickers from. Nothing like either of these exists today!

  • Heather

    Very cool posting. i still have two of these mags. Right now someone is selling one on ebay for $124 buck can you believe that! I wouldn’t part with mine even for that much. Of course, I am in my second childhood – in my thirties and still collect stickers etc. Guess i am overly nostalgic and sentimental. Thanks for posting this.

  • Valerie S.

    Thank you for posting these scans! I could totally cyber-hug you for it. When I was a kid, it was a treat to go to a newsstand and get a Stickers magazine. Looking at these scans you posted, I can’t imagine what I ever found so damn interesting about them, though. I think the ads for the stickers were a whole lot better than the articles, and let me tell you this — the one thing I absolutely loved about it was the pen pal section in the back. I always wanted to have my address printed there! Anyway, I just wanted to tell you that I thoroughly enjoyed this little flashback, thanks!

  • Beth Brown

    I LOVED STICKERS MAGAZINE. I had a subscription too it. I also loved the list of penpals you could find in the back (if I am remembering correctly)!

  • Stephanie

    Wow! I came across this while doing an unrelated search…what a blast from the past. I can’t remember if I actually subscribed to this or just bought them separately, but I had several issues. Alas, I long ago tossed them out, but I’m pretty sure I still have most, if not all, of the stickers that came with the magazine (even though they were pretty lousy as stickers go). I’ll have to check my box o’ stickers that I’ve been hanging onto for 25+ years. I’m pretty sure I also have a sheet of puffy Smurfs stickers similar to ones I saw elsewhere on this site….

  • Jenny

    I loved Stickers and Stuff magazine! I think I had every issue, and I still have them back home in the basement. Unfortunately, back then I cut out any picture that interested me (mostly of Punky)to put in scrapbooks. Next summer when I go home, I’ll see how badly they’re cut up, and maybe scan some. BTW I had Punky posters, lunchbox, doll, buttons, puzzles, everything. I don’t remember stickers. Well…maybe there were some from the cartoon, or maybe the logo! Nothing cool though.