Our story

Ethnicraft's story began with Benoit Loos and Philippe Delaisse. It started humbly, with a single shipping container brimming with decorative treasures from Indonesia. In 1995, Philippe returned home to Antwerp carrying a trove of furniture and interior accessories he discovered during his Indonesian travels, intent on selling these unique finds. Their longstanding friendship soon blossomed into a business partnership, and they began importing one container every few months.

Within a year, clients eagerly awaited at the Antwerp docks, numbered tickets in hand, hoping to secure that one coveted item that spoke to their soul. Recognizing an opportunity, Benoit and Philippe swiftly decided to design and produce their own furniture, establishing their first manufacturing site in Indonesia.

Today, outstanding craftsmanship remains the beating heart of their brand, and beneath the simplicity of their pieces lies an unwavering drive for innovation. By incorporating advanced techniques into their creative processes, each new design undergoes meticulous revision and refinement down to the smallest detail. Their collections distil the very essence of what they believe constitutes exceptional design: pieces brimming with character, crafted from quality materials that acquire a beautiful patina over time.

Ethnicraft Designers

Alongside our main designer, Alain van Havre, we collaborate with a close community recognised for their distinct design aesthetic and use of both current and traditional techniques. This process contributes to the unique quality and authenticity of each Ethnicraft piece. 

Alain van Havre

"I'm captivated by the freedom of movement, which is why I strive to infuse my designs with a sense of dynamism and escape the constraints of static compositions." For Alain van Havre, inspiration is the driving force behind his work. With a deep connection to his surroundings and a passion for natural materials, he has cultivated an exceptional expertise in woodworking. Over the years, he has developed a unique visual language centred around form, beautifully expressed in collections such as the Bok, Graphic, PI, and Stairs. Alain believes that for a design to resonate with someone, it must be brought closer to nature. During the past two decades, he has played a pivotal role in shaping the Ethnicraft designs that we have come to know and love.

Jacques Deneef

Jacques Deneef, an Antwerp-based designer, harbours a profound fascination with elemental materials like glass, wood, leather, paper, and wax. His artistic journey began with a mastery of oil and acrylic painting, but he now dedicates his time to breathing new life into repurposed objects, alongside design endeavours spanning jewellery, lighting, textiles, furniture, and decor. In bestowing a renewed existence upon these objects, Jacques believes they undergo a transformative metamorphosis, becoming imbued with newfound purpose and ultimately culminating as works of art.


Carlo Massoud

Carlo Massoud's creations are fuelled by the exploration of new and uncharted territories. Through these journeys, he uncovers fresh narratives to share through collaborations with local artisans and designers, weaving a global tapestry born from the unique interplay of people, cultures, and materials. His remarkable work is the product of his relentless questioning of social, political, cultural, and environmental norms, often compelling viewers to interrogate their own understanding of the subject matter. This approach purposefully cultivates a thought-provoking sense of confusion and provocation, prompting deeper contemplation.


Dawn Sweitzer

A boundless wellspring of creative energy and a profound fascination with the world of craftsmanship catalysed Dawn Sweitzer's artistic journey. Her works are expressive distillations of her travels, immersions in enriching cultures, the textures woven into landscapes, and her passions for photography, cuisine, and fashion. There is no fixed formula governing how her designs take shape; they are fluid amalgamations that seamlessly blend ideas, referencing vintage motifs through a modern lens. Within the confines of her beautiful North Carolina studio, Dawn works, plays, and discovers, experimenting across a diverse array of media: paint, woven textiles, mirror and glass, home accessories, and decorative pieces.


Nathan Yong

Drawing inspiration from his keen observation of the visual world around him, Nathan Yong's designs challenge the existential questions surrounding objects. Rather than indulging in superfluous details, he captures the poetic essence of products through a process of stripping away the extraneous. The resulting objects possess a lightness and restraint that lends them an inherent quality. Based in Singapore, Nathan helms a multi-disciplinary design consultancy that spans diverse fields such as graphic, industrial, interior, and architectural design, as well as strategic planning for product development, manufacturing processes, and branding.


Social Responsibility

From its inception, Ethnicraft has prioritized building robust, lasting relationships with its suppliers. Equal emphasis is placed on human factors as on product quality. We closely monitor working conditions, regularly auditing our various production facilities to uphold labour laws, human rights, and ethical social and environmental practices. Diversity is a core value, and we actively promote gender equality across our offices and manufacturing sites. We firmly believe that a diverse array of roles, responsibilities, and profiles fosters the professional and personal growth of all our people. 

No Waste

Recognising wood as a precious resource, we strive to optimise every piece. Environmental stewardship is a top priority, driving us to maximize waste reduction from the earliest design phase. Following this principle, our designs aim to minimize or repurpose as much scrap wood as feasible. Production byproducts like leftover logs, off-cuts, and sawdust are creatively reused for other applications. Sawdust from logs either fuels the drying ovens or gets compressed into pellet fuel. Any plank trimming remnants get recycled as base materials or incorporated into finger jointed panels.