zero-waste since 1998

Watch this television clip from my former MA studio for a quick intro to my zero-waste practice. Reclaimed Wool was started in a spare room in my home in Cambridge, MA in 1998. This clip was filmed in my studio space in Somerville, MA in 2007. Since 2008, my home has been in Oregon.

                      My studio practice is focused on wool, a naturally renewable and recyclable material.  My design and production process maximizes the use of recycled material and minimizes the production of waste. Each year
I recycle hundreds of pounds of post-consumer wool sweaters. My studio practice is also focused on ZERO WASTE. Each year I send almost no solid waste to landfills.  All scrap - including cuffs, collars, seams, labels, bits of yarn and fiber - is recovered and reused in the production of new items from the studio.  I also work with virgin wool which I buy directly from American shepherds, small American farms and wool processors. 

Sheep - the living, sentient source of wool - are generally known to be the oldest domesticated animal.  The human relationship with sheep is both cultural and ecological.  The diversity of sheep breeds are a direct result of the historical relationship between human beings and sheep. Different breeds of sheep produce different types of wool suited to different climates and different human uses. 

                     Since 1998 I have been making delightful and useful items from wool including ornaments, pot holders and pincushions.  Many of these everyday, banal items are made by the tons “off shore” under conditions consumers don’t want to even think about when it comes to people or planet.  My artistic vision is to explore and discover how these things (indeed, all human-made creations) can be created in a caring, responsible and thoughtful way when our relationship and interdependency to each other, the earth and its life forms, as well as our “self”, are included in the making process.

                                                                                               – Heidi Leugers 


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