TR: What inspired you both to set up your own businesses?
Becca: "My blog and instagram (malmo_and_moss) are actually my side hustle, my three day a week day job is working for a charity advising on sustainability but I love the creative outlet that running Malmo & Moss gives me".
Reena: "After I had my third little lady, I had three under the age of 4 so I gave up my job in Charity PR to be a stay at home Mum, but I found it really tough and was craving a creative outlet at the same time as renovating the home we had at the time. I became an accidental Instagrammer @hyggeforhome as I started to post my renovation online and since then have carved out a new career as an Interior and lifestyle writer and stylist for brands and columnist for Grand Designs Magazine".
TR: Where do you find creative inspiration?
Becca: "I love to travel especially (in Scandinavia) and love getting inspiration from shops, hotels, cafes, Air BnBs and the landscapes of the places I visit! I am also very old fashioned in that I still love to read physical magazines - I have lots of interiors focused titles I have collected over the years and love dipping back into them. Instagram and Pinterest are also great sources of inspiration and project ideas".
Reena: "Like Becca, I love to travel and seek out the history and architecture of places I visit. I am really inspired by Scandinavian design so will often spend hours searching online for a glimpse into the homes of our Nordic neighbours and like to order interior magazines from those countries".
Becca: "On a day when I am not working in my day job it could be a mix of so many different things! It could be that I am putting the kettle on (I drink black tea like a fish) and settling down to write a blog post or I could be styling and shooting products in my home for a brand and then editing the pictures to post on Instagram".
Reena: "My week is really varied from one day to the next. Some days I am writing all day, sat at my computer with no real pause. Other days I am styling and shooting content for my own posts or for brands. I really do love my job and it allows me to still do the school run and be at home which is the best balance".
TR: What’s your favourite part of your job?
Becca: "I love the variety - I have done so many new and different things outside my comfort zone since joining Instagram. I have connected with creative, inspiring people from across the UK I would never have met otherwise (including most importantly Reena!)".
Reena: "The opportunities to work with some of the biggest and most amazing worldwide brands that I have loved, shopped and adored for years. And the travel opportunities which have seen me go as far as Mauritius and Chicago where I flew out two years ago to pick up a Domino Award for “Best International Blog of the Year.”
TR: Why is sustainability important to you and your businesses?
Becca: "I have worked in the environmental sector for over 15 years now, first in environmental law and now helping business, the public sector and civil society to tackle and find solutions to complex sustainability challenges. Climate change is the biggest most important issue of my lifetime and I am passionate about being part of the shift to a more sustainable, low carbon world. Whilst the scale of the challenge can seem daunting there is also so much exciting innovation and new ways of doing things coming through that make me hopeful".
Reena: "I have just designed and built our first home and tried wherever feasible to choose sustainable materials and ways to build. But the experience has also flagged a shift that I feel really needs to happen in the housing industry to make sustainability more accessible and affordable. The high costs associated with an eco build made much of it unattainable - so we ended up having to use conventional methods for our own project".
Becca: "I tend to work at the kitchen table but we are actually building an office at the bottom of our garden now that we are both working from home so much more! I am hoping it will be my little cabin retreat!"
Reena: "I work from home at my dining table but we are also planning a cosy, Scandi garden office / snug space which will house an oversized desk, wood burner and corner sofa".
TR: What three things can’t you live without and why?
Becca: "Family, friends and tea! Lockdown has really underlined to me that the most important thing in life is actually family and friends - not possessions. My mum and dad are in their 70s and not being able to see them for six months has been so hard! Tea, because I drink about 12 cups a day and can't imagine life without it especially in winter!"
Reena: "Family time, spending time with friends and travel. I have really, really missed travelling in lockdown and have found not having the freedom to go off and explore another country really difficult. I hope we can make up for it in 2021!"
TR: We love hearing about other people’s interior style, what makes your house a home?
Reena: "We have just written our first Interior Design Book and our mantra throughout has been to create a home that you will never want to leave and make it a happy and cosy one. We have outlined in the book what we think the key elements are in making your home a hygge sanctuary to hibernate in which is perfect for this season and if we end up in a second lockdown (I am currently in one as Cardiff has gone back into lockdown!)".
Reena: "I adore the oak Hanter Table Light which I am lucky enough to own. I love the contemporary design and the way it is softened with the curved stem and the exposed filament bulb allows for an ambient glow and atmosphere in the evenings when the sun has gone down".
TR: What do the next six months hold for you?
Reena: "I hope that our book inspires people to create the home that they have always wanted too and that it opens up doors to write book number two. And I hope to travel again one day soon".