Community Magazine Design for Soha Housing’s Residents

Community Magazine Design for this tri-annual publication that helped this community-based housing group re-engage with its stakeholders.

Soha Hometalk - Community Magazine


Soha Housing is a successful, award-winning, community-based housing provider working in and around south Oxfordshire, running and managing around 6000 properties. Their quarterly resident’s magazine ‘Hometalk’ is an important communication channel that allows tenants to stay connected with their community and have their say in how things are run. The Community Magazine Design had to be engaging and attractive to not just capture attention but then keep the reader involved.


The Soha team scrutinised previous copies ‘Hometalk’, and feedback sought from a range of stakeholders, before asking Toast to create something new. The challenge was to make this essential communication piece capable of competing with a whole range of magazines that their residents read from Radio Times to Store Magazines and TV Soap weeklies. ‘Hometalk’ needed to compete and win against this range of publications to ensure residents picked it up, read and shared it. 


Toast created a range of mood boards to ensure that the look and feel was correct before creating a number of sketch-based concepts. The strongest of these concepts was then developed further until the final design was created. The new look established a refreshing style for subsequent copies to follow, and Toast has now created 5 seasonal editions of “Hometalk and it’s been very well received.

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Project Team

“After investigating a number of the commercially available magazines, one of the things we identified was the use of call outs and lists which I applied to the new magazine style as an ongoing feature”

Adam Buttress, Senior Designer at Toast Design

“We think it’s a very ‘readable’ magazine in looks and content.”

Stakeholders and residents feedback

What our client says…

“Adam at Toast was incredibly helpful when I briefed him with the re-design of our tenants’ magazine. He helped me plan the consultation stages with our tenants, provided excellent mood boards and scamps for them to review and the fi nal product was very well received. All this, and it saved Soha money, too! I’m so pleased to be working with Toast again.”

Sarah Stokes Communications Manager

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