Niels Stellan Høm and Carton Madelaire were army pals who joined forces 50 years ago to start a trading company. They tried their hand at sports shoes and furniture, but their business did not really take off until they heard about a small factory in Fårevejle, Denmark, called Danish Stainless.
Danish Stainless produced stainless steel tableware, which was very much in vogue in Denmark’s 1960s. Upon entering into an agreement with Danish Stainless, Stelton began marketing a stainless gravy boat that sold like hotcakes in Danish hardware stores and was also a hit outside Denmark. In the United States, Stelton products were the epitome of Danish Design and sold at ten times their Danish prices in high-end department stores and design boutiques.
A new managing director, Peter Holmblad, brought his far-reaching vision with him when he joined the company.
As the stepson of Arne Jacobsen, who was perhaps Denmark’s greatest architect and designer ever, it was natural for Peter Holmblad to approach his stepfather with a proposal.
Stelton launched the new products designed by Arne Jacobsen three years later as Cylinda-Line. The new series immediately made a splash as a major innovation within its category. The simplicity of cylindrical shapes and specially designed plastic handles characterised the line which, along with its brushed steel surfaces, stood in striking contrast to the highly polished curves of its day. Cylinda-Line was awarded the ID Prize in 1967.
The Stelton vacuum jug kicked off 30 years of collaboration between Peter Holmblad’s business acumen and Erik Magnussen’s creative power. Throughout the 1980s and 1990s, the duo produced a wide range of design hits that appealed across generations of gift givers.
More recently Stelton has invited new designers to furnish innovative product ideas to meet current consumer needs.
Stelton added new lines to appeal to a broader range of consumer segments. While the cylindrical form can be seen in many of the new products, the current collection also includes a number of other, softer shapes.