The History of Stelton
Stellan and Carton were two friends who merged their first names in forming one of Denmark’s best-know design brands, Stelton. 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. New catalogues, packaging and graphic design all helped create a new design brand. However, Peter Holmblad was convinced that Stelton could survive only through new product design. Far too many companies produced the same kinds of products.
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.
Arne Jacobsen (1902-1971) is one of the most acknowledged Danish architects and designers worldwide. With an astounding curiosity, originality and creativity Arne Jacobsen played an important role in modernism and the Danish design history and present-day designers are still highly influenced by his works.
With an educational background within architecture at the Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts Arne Jacobsen had an extraordinary understanding of proportion that he applied to his works. With a keen eye for detail, he undertook architectural projects that included all elements of interior design, creating visionary and fully coherent concepts. Most of his famous furniture designs like the Ant, the Swan and the No. 7 chair and lamp designs were originally created for architectural projects.
Arne Jacobsen designed the award-winning cocktail and tableware series Cylinda-line for Stelton in 1967 that has become the essence of Stelton’s design DNA. Cylinda-line was recognised with the ID-prize 1967 by The Danish Society of Industrial Design and The International Design Award 1968 by The American Institute of Interior Designers.