Learning about salvage and vintage
I’m loving the magazine Reclaim – it’s relatively new to me but on issue 13 already (yes, I’ll be looking for back issues). I happened to see it by chance when someone left a copy on top of the papers in a newsagent – it was like finding a Troika vase in a charity shop!
It calls itself an interiors magazine and I suppose it is but the tag line ‘Vintage charm, Salvage trends and Antique chic’ and the salvage focus are what captured me. It’s definitely a magazine with ‘green’ or social responsibility at its heart. It’s a good read for understanding the business, the objects and the buyers.
So yes, it could be read by an interior designer but for me it’s full of vintage trends and that will help me know what to buy and what to sell. It’s not, of course, written for a vintage seller but I love the re-purposing, upcycling, salvage focus. It’s lovely to see Ercol as the focus of pictures, rather than only in the background. The events and exhibitions cover vintage markets, blogs, and study courses and is well worth a peruse.
Readers are encouraged to think about the use of things. For example, vintage tools tend to have been used a lot and today we discard them as out of date and into landfill they go, fresh from grandpa’s garage. Of course, they’re not out of date, and in their wear they tell a story. Perhaps they won’t be used again but they can be displayed, used as paper weights, lamps, birds, the list is endless. Perhaps they will be used again – often the older tool costs the same as new ones but do a job better. They are made of stronger stuff as they were built to last. My husband’s favourite hand scythe works brilliantly and cost 50p, yet I have had to part with a distressingly high number of modern and soon bent-out-of-shape hand tools. I’m now searching for Victorian replacements!
There are great articles on enamel advertising signs, their history, and where to find them. There are interesting articles on interiors, such as one on TV’s Restoration Man (loving the idea of kitchen shelves from church pews) – 7 pages of text and pictures gives far more than a glossy summary of what’s in the photos. An all too brief page on Tom Dixon’s mirror ball light explains its physical longevity. And if I ever sell enough I would love to follow their guide to San Francisco’s vintage scene.
I fear for the magazines future – I do hope it stays salvage and retro and ditches the crafting ideas in the March 2017 issue – how to blow eggs is something that ironically anyone reading this magazine would probably know how to do! And the note to use eBay for salvaged storage jars is just plain silly! I fear we might lose it to the LandLove or Landscape formula (nice in their own right but not the same). Instead please tell us how to deal with rust, review polishes and waxes, how to rewire a lamp – tell us how to salvage as well as what to buy. In the meantime, if you’re into 20th century modern, this magazine is for you.