I was born and bred in the region of Basel in Switzerland. I started learning  the uilleann pipes in 1989 and the flute a few years later.

From 1991 until 1999 I worked with pipe maker Andreas Rogge in Tübingen, Germany, and learned  to handcraft instruments such as the Uilleann pipes, Highland pipes, Small pipes, Grande Bourbonnaise, Cabrette, Schäferpfeife and Hümmelchen. During my apprenticeship I also took an interest in the Irish flute which developed into my making them, just for myself at first, then also for Andreas’ shop.  

In 1999 I moved back to Basel to open my own workshop. Since then I have been busy making wooden flutes for Irish music. I had started off with a Pratten design originally inspired by a Hudson. In time I learned more about flute making by examining some great flutes of Rudall & Rose, T. Prowse, Fentum, Astor & more. Today, I am still making both types, Prattens & Rudalls, however, I work exclusively with my own designs.  The Uilleann pipe chanters that I make are also my own design. By the way: all flutes and chanters are designed to play in Hz 440!

Therefore, whenever the old makers’ names are used in this context, it is to pay them tribute, because these names stand for certain types of flutes or sounds and because they are in common use for categorisation. Whatever flute or chanter I might make for you will be one hundred percent Aebi!

Thomas Aebi