Heidi Zilmer does what very few people in the world do – she handcrafts tapestries, creating unique designs for the wall by hand. Using old techniques, she develops and creates stunning art that is custom-made for every client.
Visit any craftsman’s workshop and you will be blown away by the creativity the room oozes, from the patterns and designs on display, to the smell and the atmosphere. Entering the workshop of Heidi Zilmer is definitely no exception. You can feel the passion she applies to her designs and sense the way she ‘becomes one’ with her materials.
Heidi Zilmer is the founder of Zilmers, and she creates one-of-a-kind wall decorations, handmade luxury tapestries and specially designed scalable wallpapers. But what drives, inspires and motivates her to make these special creations, in a world where handmade is so uncommon?
What inspires you?
Through my work restoring old buildings, I often look at old techniques and craftsmanship, classical ways of doing things and designs from a time that has passed. It could be an old tapestry, a weaving or a pattern from another part of the world. I interpret these inputs into something more Danish, something more minimalistic. I try to modernise and use something that is historical, in today’s modern interior design and architecture.
What is your unique skill?
I am trained in interior design and architecture and I quickly see how something historical can be reinterpreted. I see behind the patterns – is this baroque, art deco or art nouveau? – and what I see, my mind immediately transfers into something modern, contemporary and often more minimalistic. These thoughts then become my designs.
Are your designs personal to you, and which feelings do your designs transfer to your clients?
My designs are very personal to me, and I try to make them as spiritual as possible, putting in as many positive thoughts as I can. I transfer these thoughts and feelings to my clients with the help of colours and patterns.
What is the difference between wallpaper and tapestry?
Tapestry means ‘a blanket for the wall’ and since ancient times, we’ve been using textiles to drape our walls. They were handmade, embroidered and woven with intricate patterns; if you could afford to drape your walls with textiles, it was a sign of wealth and power. It was a status symbol that you’d want to have in your home. Wallpaper was introduced in the 1750s. Initially, it was still for the wealthy, but eventually, around the time of the Industrial Revolution, wallpaper became affordable for the working class.
Who are your clients?
My current clients are private owners of castles and manors, museums and shops, from small private clients to large corporations. But anyone who wants something unique, handcrafted and beautiful to decorate their room is potentially my client.