In the mid-1950’s, a teenage Heidi and her family, moved from the Black Forest region of Germany, and established a new home in Brooklyn New York.
Over the years, she began to get involved with education, more specifically, working with special needs children. In the early 90’s, Heidi and her husband John, relocated to Maryland’s Eastern Shore, where she continued to mentor and work with special needs children.
She began weaving classes as a way to relax. It wasn’t long before she was moving forward, adding skills and creating unique elements in her weaving. Many of those elements incorporated natural objects found while traveling extensively through out the six continents.
Speaking with her still present German accent, Heidi enthusiastically exclaims, “If it can be woven, I will use it!” to literally weave in fired glass beads, wood turnings, paper, feathers, bones, metallic strips, shells, and other curiosities within her pieces.
The finished results form baskets, wall hangings, useful wrapped vases, ceramic bowls enshrouded by fiber, plus framed thematic dioramas. These pieces range in size from tiny, compact hand-crafted basket jewels made of waxed linen to expansive framed hanging capturing abstract and interpretive scenes from nature.
Other weavings range from traditional to ethnic, often incorporating cedar bark strips, leather, hand spun yarn, cane, and sweet grass as well. The result is a fascinating object d’art or even a very beautiful and useful item, which can serve to adorn a home or office with a colorful, decorative focal point.
Heidi Wetzel is available for gallery exhibits, craft and art festivals and for weaving demonstrations. Be sure to also visit Heidi’s blog page, which includes many articles and photographs of past demonstrations and events .