I compeletly agree with you............they are over the top with cost anymore and it'll just increase as everything does. I haven't subscribed to any for some time now but when I did I waited until the company really had a great deal. I do still occasionally pick up a few magazines at the stand but not often.
I have in the past just went to the local library on a rainy or lazy day and read the issues that interested me. Mainly because most magazines I generally only found a few things of interest to me that I wanted to recreate....whether it be a recipe, craft, decorating, etc..... So I'd always take a notebook and paper to copy down the recipes and jot down other things of interest. If I needed a photo then I'd just pay the copy fee of 10 cents.....and rarely did I have to do this as I was mostly writing stuff down.
Now one thing I do do is......if I go to a rummage sale or such and see cooking or decorating magazines for 10 cents....sometimes 25 cents.....I'll pick up the ones that grab my interest and almost always I find something in them well worth that dime or quarter