Making the most out of the professional competencies present at her studio, Heidi Zilmer keeps developing her business.
“I’m a craftsman when I recreate and restore, an artist when I customise pieces for clients; when doing wallpaper I’m an artisan and I’m a designer when I create patterns and objects for design companies. So, you could say I’m a multidisciplinary designer.”
Those are the words Heidi Zilmer uses to describe herself. She is the founder and multi-artist at Zilmers, a small Danish design studio specialising in the restoration of old, historical manors and creating gorgeous, extravagant wallpapers.
But, even though Heidi Zilmer’s skill repertoire as an experienced designer is quite impressive, she can still be challenged on her subject knowledge. This becomes apparent when visiting her workshop in eastern Jutland, Denmark. Every year, she takes in interns from different fields of study – and these new talented minds do something to the creative process and the dynamic at the small studio.
“I know the legacy of decorating and wallpapers, but I tend to shy away from established ways of thinking when working on my own things and in cooperation with my highly skilled interns. Most of my interns are perfectionists and it is provoking to work in an open-minded environment where it is customary to make mistakes on purpose. We work away from perfectionism and use mistakes and any new ideas as learning and developing situations. A short time ago, we did an experiment where we laid folded papers in a colour bath. It created the most beautiful batik-like patterns,” says Heidi Zilmer before she continues.
“No matter which degree programme my interns come from, they always bring new aspects, thoughts and ideas and I learn a lot from having them here and working together.”
Expanding the Palette with New Collaborators
It is one thing to know your own strengths, quite another to know which competencies you lack and to reach out for help to fulfil your professional dreams. Collaborations and co-creations are very common in the design business – they’re a way of recalling attention to one’s work while collaborating with other brands.
As Heidi Zilmer explains:
“To me, design collaboration is an exciting field, and I want to spend more time on exploring my possibilities. I’ve already made some headway in that respect, designing a home textile collection for Rosendahl/Juna, and I’ve got more projects in the pipeline. There are so many companies like Kvadrat, Georg Jensen Damask, Le Klint and Kähler I want to collaborate with – my head is bursting with new interior design ideas for textiles, tables, tiles, lamps and accessories! But I’m also very excited to reveal that I’m joining up with Andersen Furniture this year.”
Studio Zilmers has a lot on its agenda for 2018 with new projects and new collaborations on the way, and we promise to keep you posted about the latest news from the crafty workshop during the year.