La Violonnerie
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Workshop

We've set up our workshop for violin family instruments in the heart of France, with easy access by train and by road.

Here, Yves-Antoine makes new instruments, both copies and own designs. Here, Ulrike restores and brings back to life old ones. Here as well, we help musicians of all types, ages and stages, from beginners to professionals, of classical, folk, jazz... backgrounds, to find or make evolve their instrument, true to their needs and desires.

Ulrike Gachet (née Menk)

Restorer

I've always wanted to be a violin maker. Originally from Bremen in Germany, I came to the Violin Making School in Newark in England at the age of 19. Shortly thereafter, I found my true vocation: the restoration of old instruments.

I take broken, worn-out, neglected instruments and put them back into playing condition. This may take anything from an afternoon to several years.

I always have a couple of big restorations on the go – through cleaning and gluing one crack a day, things that came to me as jigsaw puzzles slowly come back together and become whole. Later, through retouching the varnish, they become beautiful once again. What pleasure it gives me to make them sound again !

In between, I take care of the small repairs and maintenance for musicians who come to see us. To see the difference a small adjustment can make, to see their eyes light up – this, too gives me great pleasure !

Yves-Antoine Gachet

Maker

Music, woodwork, and graphic design are the essence of the instruments I make.

The experience I gathered at Mirecourt violin making school and in various violin workshops led to my making and restoring instruments of some very different traditions: French, German, English...

 

Today, my making is the direct result of this diversity: violins, violas, 'cellos, double basses and other bowed instruments, of different models, as copies or as own designs, made to order and always made to measure.

The ergonomics, the aesthetics, and above all the sound are entirely up to you as I strive to make the instrument personal to you, from the beginning (choice of wood) right up to the end (choice of strings).