- No. 09
PRESS // A DESIGNER PROFILE
DESIGNER PROFILE : BRINGING TECH CONCEPTS TO MARKET - SchreibKultur Lifestyle Magazine by Editor, Sabine Baumstark + featuring STEWART/STAND, CEO + Founder Paul Stewart-Stand
KNITTING STEEL : Finely woven steel wallets and bags by American Designer Stewart/Stand. These eye-catching bags represent the modern life style.
Nothing is impossible - a new exclusive material gives wallets and accessories a unique look. Finely woven steel strands combine to form a silky and luminous luster, two designers from New York have marketed their discovery. An entire product line has evolved from this fascinating material: wallets, purses, messenger bags, computer bags. These chic accessories appeal to men and women alike.
Always on the lookout for something new, I wondered who were the people behind this unusual idea? The Stewart/Stand Design Firm was founded in 2002 by brothers Theo & Paul Stewart-Stand in Brooklyn, New York. Theo conjured up the idea while attending an exhibition on Extreme Materials in New York, "I was drawn to the material, I needed to find a reason to incorporate this material into my every-day."
The brothers traced the fabric to a materials factory in Italy specializing in Technical-Textiles. It took several trips to various Leather Goods Manufacturers to find a producer who was able & willing to implement the designers' dream, "It cost us many nights of reflection, creating and re-drafting, until the products finally met our expectations", explains Paul. Such an inventive product would require precision tailoring equipment & highly trained professionals.
Developing the product line took roughly 10 years. Presented today, the Stewart/Stand Stainless Steel Wallet & Accessories Collection offers the complete range of Mens & Womens Small Personal Goods. The individual threads of the fabric, although strong, feel like silk. The material is brilliant - robust and extremely weather resistant. Impervious to acids & salts, they offer an additional technical safeguard: they can protect your personal information from radio frequency theft (RFID).
In the U.S., the embedded RFID chips in credit cards, bank cards, IDs & passports are a hot topic. Increasingly, people seek solutions securing their private information through RFID Blocking products. The designers at Stewart/Stand have solved this problem in a sophisticated and elegant display of style. The Stainless Steel Wallet creates a Faraday cage, protecting all RFID enabled devices from detection. Time has told - years have passed, not a single customer has contacted Stewart/Stand claiming their data was stolen.
Stewart/Stand has also caught the attention of the U.S. media. Appearances on The Today Show (NBC) and on Good Morning America (ABC) has introduced the Stainless Steel Wallets & Accessories to a large audience and into the consciousness of the consumer. The design firm has also been featured in Lifestyle magazines such as "Elle Decor", "Rondo" & "WIRED", and has landed feature-articles in "The Boston Globe", a leading news source for the North East, U.S.
A great success in America, Stewart/Stand has followed their fans beyond the U.S. boarders. New markets lead to broadening the collections in order to capture the nuances of a distinct customer base. For example, wallets & accessories that combine leather and the stainless steel silk. The original design is easily marketed to a vegan market, the Texture Collection targets Architects & the Design Savvy. All the designs are accessible to the Eco-Conscious Consumer, more than 85% of the stainless steel is post-consumer recycled.
We caught up with Paul Stewart-Stand while he was touring the European Market at Tendence in Frankfurt. The Stewart/Stand Stainless Steel Wallets & Accessories premier was presented by the German Distributors HV Sales & Marketing Consult via Wiesbaden. Hans-J Vogl, a principal at the European Firm had only one comment to make "The Stewart/Stand brand can only be described as a successful fit for our retailer. Finally something new and unique in both design and functionality."