It Design was founded by the architect duo Valérie Jomini and Stanislas Zimmerman. She was born in Lausanne, while he comes from Berne. Their paths first crossed at the EPFL, where they finished their studies in 1996, a time when it was difficult to find work as an architect. Most of their peers left Switzerland for Berlin, but they decided to stay and quickly started to develop their own projects.
To begin with, they created furniture for their own personal use. Their first creation was a bed, quickly followed by the Itbox. ‘We wanted to do things for people like us, who moved house often and didn’t have a driving licence.’ Their imperative: every item of furniture had to be capable of being transported by bicycle or sent by post. As a result, the signature style of It Design was compact, light and flexible.
For presenting their creations, the pair had the inspired idea of designing a ‘Living Unit’. Next door to their workshop, there was a garage that displayed cars inside bubbles to protect them from bad weather. This was a nifty way to exhibit light, transportable furniture! Valérie and Stanislas organised guerilla operations of a kind that was still relatively uncommon, and presented their furniture at the major design fairs simply by installing their Living Unit in the street, not far from the building entrance. This guaranteed a surprise effect for the visitors, and success was on the cards. The Living Unit travelled around a lot, from Japan to London, where it achieved the feat of travelling in one of the city’s iconic taxis, to the great delight of the English.
Today, from their Zurich base, Valérie and Stanislas pursue their architecture and furniture projects in parallel, with the freedom to combine the two by creating furniture for the spaces they design.
“We design modular and light furniture that can easily follow you.”
The Itbox are an ingenious storage system with a design that is at once contemporary and timeless. Consisting of seven forms, each available in five colours, the system gives everyone the freedom to compose their own shelves, low tables or bedside tables.