• Wood

    Swiss and Italian forests abound in ash, a large tree with pointed leaves whose bark is rather light. They can often be seen along streams and grow very quickly. Apparently, its name goes back to the Old English æsc, meaning 'spear', because of its frequent use in crafting this type of weapons. A friend of ours told us that it was also used to make certain kinds of bows, thanks to its flexibility and spring force. Due to its characteristics, it has long been used in very specific fields such as the manufacture of tool handles.

    For our products, we only use Category A - FSC certified ash. This timber is dense, hard and homogenous, which makes it very enjoyable to shape. When cutting ash lumber, elegant surface areas of bright and stripped wood appear: it is like a marble plate. One of our desires was obviously to show off the beauty of such surfaces. Combining an attractive set of technical, aesthetic and ecological qualities, it has naturally emerged as an obvious choice for us.

    Wood is a living material which may be subject to some variations depending on the environment.

    We coat our products with a colourless ultra matt varnish that protects and prevents from yellowing. This treatment also ensures that the wood retains its natural appearance and makes it pleasant to the touch. To maintain these distinctive features, it only takes a quick wipe with a damp soft cloth.

  • Identity

    Our office is based in Lausanne, Switzerland. There, we host designers, work on our development, create the prototypes, and verify the proportions and comfort of our products. Depending on its type, our objects are produced either in the Piedmont in Italy or in the canton of Vaud in Switzerland. These two regions, geographically close to each other, have some common values. Piedmont is reputed all over the world for the expertise of its craftsmen in the manufacture of furniture. In fact, the history of design has always been marked by its dynamism and blooming activity. As for the Swiss savoir-faire, it appears among the most famous in the world in terms of precision and rigour.

    By combining the best of these two cultures, we hope to provide excellence of craftsmanship to our customers.


    A C E - these guys produce simple, modern tools for living, in Switzerland, using European ash. Ash then determines the look and feel of the furniture quite a lot. Despite all the clever contemporary and composite materials that have been developed in the last century, ash still feels like the most modern of materials: strong, light, beautiful and incredibly resilient (as well as very fast growing and capable of absorbing more CO2 than any other tree. It is only equalled by the Douglas Fir, which doesn't grow so well in Europe). The amazing strength and resilience of ash was also recognised six thousand years ago by Neolithic man, who found it the perfect accompaniment to the hewn flint axe heads they fashioned themselves, in order to make other useful tools for living. A C E: Keeping it useful in the twenty first century!
    Text by Michael Marriott

  • Manufacturing

    All our objects are hand-crafted by cabinetmakers who live in the area around the Alps (Switzerland or Italy). Working in close collaboration with these artisans was the starting point of our company, and our products are the result of this dialogue, in their functions, their form, and their details.

    In fact, we believe that the skills of the craftsmen with whom we team up are not only expressed by their ability to construct extremely complex objects, but also by their capacity to create perfectly simple products. Rigour and precision are, indeed, most clearly demonstrated through minimalism.

    The dimensions are accurate to 1/10th of a millimeter. The sharp angles are delicately smoothened with thin sandpapering which ensures a perfect finish that makes the objects pleasant to the touch. Each detail of our products is meticulously checked by our cabinetmaker before the varnishing step, which is also done manually. The artisanal work carefully performed at each stage of the production guarantees us an impeccable quality as well as perfect finishing touches.

  • Tools

    As in every game, there are rules; in our own, one of the basic rules of production is this: since we want our goods to respect the techniques of traditional crafting, we work with the machines that are found in a traditional cabinetmaker's workshop.
    This choice has two important effects: rationalizing production and providing a strong aesthetic framework. En effet, parce que nous voulons que nos objets soient respectueux des techniques de fabrication artisanale, nous avons décidé de travailler autour des machines que l'on trouve dans les ateliers traditionnels d'ébénisterie. Among the machines that we use, there is:
    - a bandsaw for cutting up lumber
    - a jointer for making the lumber straight and flat as well as for squaring the pieces of wood
    - a thickness planer for getting the exact thickness and breadth we want
    - a circular saw for cutting, which makes angular shapes.
    - a router which makes circular shapes and grooves
    - a spindle moulder for achieving more complex shapes

    Thanks to the savoir-faire of our craftsmen and to the creativity of our designers, we can make the most of these traditional machines' potential.

  • Designers

    Working in close collaboration with our designers as well as with our artisans allows us to conceive our products in minute detail. And as we are, at our core, designers ourselves, our approach as editors is naturally orientated towards this field. We understand fully the role that the designer can have at all stages of the development of an object. The products that we develop are oozing with attitude: it emanates from the space we give our designers to create.

    We love working with designers with whom we can create a genuine relationship; one which opens up ground for our brand and questions our principles and our knowledge. We would like to take the opportunity here to thank them for their wonderful work.

  • Awards

    Since 2012, A C E is part of the Swiss Federal Office of Culture's (FOC) permanent collection at the Museum für Gestaltung in Zurich.
    In 2011, A C E was awarded 2nd in category "Design" in the die Besten Award, curated by Hochparterre magazine.
    In 2011, A C E was awarded with the "Swiss Federal Design Award".
    In 2010, A C E received a generous support from Fondation Ikea (Suisse).
    In 2010, A C E received a generous support from the State of Vaud (Suisse).

Administrator's desk
A C E Team

Everyday chair
A C E Team

Wall hook
Tomás Alonso

Self-holding shelf
A C E Team

A C E Team

Desk lamp
Béatrice Durandard

Table lamp
A C E Team

Desk tray
Camille Blin & Tomas Kral

Chopping board
Tomás Alonso

Side table
Michael Marriott

Apple tray
Lucas Uhlmann

Wall lamp
A C E Team

Coffee table
A C E Team

Bottle opener
Adrien Rovero

Adrien Rovero

Ceiling lamp
A C E Team


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NEW: Cuillère, designed by G. Bouroullec

Depuis 2012, A C E fait partie de la collection permanente de l'Office fédéral de la culture (OFC) au Museum für Gestaltung de Zürich.