One of our favourite times of the month here at Modish Living is when our Reclaim magazine arrives. This treasure trove of all things reclaimed, upcycled and vintage shows just how wonderful reclaimed wood furniture can look in our homes with inspiration and advice from interior designers and master craftspeople. We had the honour of speaking with Managing Editor, Loma-Ann Marks, to find out more about what goes on behind the scenes at our much-loved magazine.
Hi, Loma-Ann. Let’s start at the beginning. Tell us a bit about you? Have you always wanted to work in magazines?
I have always loved magazines, and actually did four weeks of work experience at Smash Hits* when I was 15 [for any readers under the age of 30, Smash Hits was an iconic British pop music magazine for teens]. But I came back to them in a roundabout way, via writing theatre and dance reviews, then working on national newspapers, freelancing for brands, starting my own arts and culture website and now Reclaim.
What’s does a typical day as the Editor of Reclaim look like?
Well, I’m also managing editor, plus I oversee our socials and advertising so no two days are the same. My priority though is the print version of the magazine and I spend a lot of time commissioning features and liaising with writers and photographers, forward planning the issues, setting up partnerships and checking copy and images when they come in. We’re a small team and I work closely with our designer, sub and contributing editor.
We’re big fans of the magazine and particularly loved the January 2022 issue featuring @sophie-mumford-interiors home and your decorating trends. Do you have a favourite issue?
I have two. We did a complete re-design at the end of 2018, and for the launch of the new look I put together a cover shoot, featuring Jay Blades, Sonali Shah, Jo Wood, James Gooch and Sara Morel. I approached them specifically as each represents one of Reclaim’s five pillars: upcycling, salvage, vintage, antiques and eco. Plus they look beautiful together; always good for a cover!
My other favourite was the May 2020 issue, created during lockdown. Everything was so worrying, but the positive I felt at the time, and wanted Reclaim to reflect, was that people were pulling together and helping each other. I added ‘Soft Power’ as the main coverline as it not only suited the gorgeous feminine home we featured on the cover, but is what we were all showing. Lots of the content already planned had to pivot to everyone’s new circumstances, and we covered everything from virtual stores to updating your home office and I’m proud of what we achieved.
What is it about reclaimed, sustainable and upcycled furniture that makes it so popular?
Because everyone is much more aware of how important it is to live sustainably. Reclaim has always reflected eco, reclaimed and upcycled furniture – now the mainstream has cottoned on. Also, upcycling is very creative, it’s cost-effective and the finished piece is unique.
With this desire to live more sustainably, how do you think reclaimed wood furniture and eco-interiors will evolve?
It will become even more mainstream, and larger brands will have to catch up and be clear about the provenance and supply chains of their pieces. Also, indie brands will become ever more popular as people buy into one-off, carefully made and curated ranges with a personal service.
What should people look for when buying reclaimed, vintage or rustic furniture?
Quality – most older pieces are very well made, as are new pieces using reclaimed materials, but it’s important to check that vintage furniture isn’t riddled with woodworm or immovable stains; or that reclaimed wood furniture has been properly treated, sanded and hasn’t got any splinters.
Is your home full of beautiful reclaimed and vintage pieces?
It’s a mixture of old and new, but the new tends to come from independent makers or brands. I’ve always loved vintage homewares, clothes and finding one-off, unusual pieces – my mum always said if something stands still for too long I’d put an old lace doily on it.
Do you have a favourite room in your home?
Currently my bedroom, which I completely redecorated during lockdown.
We love a bedroom makeover. Tell us more…
It’s very calm, pink and green, with two oversized prints by Swedish photographer, Dan Isaac Wallin, whose work is very dreamy and feels quite spiritual. The space also has a gallery of mirrors, fairy lights and a dresser that I gold-leafed - it catches the afternoon light and early evening light, which makes it very pretty.
Photo by: Dan Isaac Wallin / danisaacwallin.com / @danisaacwallin
What would be your dream property?
A Georgian mansion with wisteria in the garden.
Aside from your family, what three things would you save if our home was on fire?
A box of letters from my mum, my favourite ceramic swan from my dad and as many of my books as I could carry.
We think we already know the answer to this, but would you rather have a large master bedroom suite or a large home office?
Master suite, 100%. Relaxing is more important than work!!