What does STEL offer? Product design? Engineering? Brand expertise?
Co-founded by industrial designer Pete Ducato, STEL is a one-stop-shop for innovation. With a fully-equipped studio situated in Goleta, California, STEL partners with companies of any size to design, manufacture, and brand products. “We bring industrial design and mechanical engineering together to develop products in the area,” Pete said.
Not just anybody can work with STEL. The company is picky in choosing who to partner with; the product must not only be exceptional, it is also important that STEL choose products that harmonize with their own image. Keeping an eye on the big picture while working on a smaller scale is something that they do best at STEL.
Like so many California-based tech innovators, Pete started STEL in a garage with co-founder Ryan Olson. “We met people at IHOP for meetings because we didn’t have space,” Pete recalled. What started out as a 3D printing company has morphed into a multidimensional design firm with aspirations of becoming the best on the west coast.
Saying their products stand out in a crowd is quickly recognized as an understatement. The G-1 Glider “offers its riders the one-of-a-kind scooter experience.” The Nomad wireless charging station was “meticulously designed for aesthetics and convenience.” The harmony between the knitted fabric blend and metal frame of the Olbii Bluetooth headphones promises to turn heads as it blends tech with style. It quickly becomes clear that each new product is a different brand.
STEL designs products that are uniquely elegant and functional. But beyond eye-catching product design, they also offer their clients a dedication to building an entire brand, if they so choose. For example, STEL has created their own lifestyle product suite for cohesive branding and marketing that go beyond product design. This is the case with the poster child for their branding productions, Luno Life—a movement to satiate wanderlust. With products that include a headrest organizer and custom-fit, durable car air mattress, Luno Life creates gear to enable an explorative lifestyle on the road.
Aside from the work showcased on their website (truly a portfolio for prospective clients), they really do not take much credit for the brands they build. STEL is simply enabling the success of companies with great ideas. “We love working with startups because our involvement is much higher level—we’re almost like an extension of their team,” Pete said. The young squad at STEL is full of vibrant creators who are passionate about their work and excited about collaborating with other creative minds to flawlessly design, engineer, build, and market ideas.