1271b market street chattanooga, tn

Widgets & Stone 

A Design Studio

How Widgets' creativity serves business goals

We connect business with creativity, designing tools and strategies that benefit economy, communication, innovation and brand.

We work with select clients to craft communications that position them for growth. This often means providing much more than a logo or a strategy – we deliver an integrated, cross-media platform of verbal and visual articulation.

Widgets & Stone’s immersive design approach unearths your values and personality, as well as a strong understanding of what customers expect from your brand. By finding and articulating your brand promise, we help build anticipation and trust in your audience.

As a full service design studio, we help each client communicate the right message to the right audiences, in the right way, at the right time.

Our 3-Minute Manifesto

Our core values

1. Design the right things, design the things right.

2. Partner with individuals and organizations that inspire us.

3. Interact with our partners and collaborators on both personal and professional levels.

4. Continually learn and grow with our partners.

5. Collaborate with multidisciplinary talents.

6. Make the invisible visible.

7. Create extraordinary communication.

Our Leadership

The principal

Paul Rustand


As principal, he has led Widgets & Stone since day one. Paul serves as the hub of the studio, drawing clients, creative ideas and collaborators together around projects to accomplish business and brand objectives. 

Paul is active in AIGA, the professional association for design, serving his second term as President of the Chattanooga Chapter. He completed the AIGA program "Business Perspectives for Creative Leaders" at the Yale School of Management (2008). He holds a MFA in Book Arts from the University of Alabama (2004) and a BFA in Design & Illustration from East Carolina University (1994). He is also very proud of his month-long internship with Sagmeister, Inc. (2004). [More: extended bios page].


Our Collaborators

The extended team

Brad is a longtime long distance collaborator with the studio (working with Widgets since 2001). Brad creates brilliant brand identities, exceptional designs and innovative typography for the studio. He frequently provides insightful creative direction and concept development. And he was also our very first intern in 2000.

He lives in Iowa City where he serves as an Assistant Professor of Design at the University of Iowa. Along with an active freelance design career, he pursues personal projects and a pro bono design project called Donate Design. Brad received his MFA from the University of Iowa in design (2005) as well as his MA (2003). He has a BFA in Graphic Design from the University of Tennessee - Chattanooga (2001).  [More: extended bios page].


Originally brought on to coordinate production of the studio’s distinctive print work, Grant now spends most of his time lending his design talent to creative projects — through design, typography and photography.

He holds a BFA in design from the University of Tennessee - Chattanooga, where he also serves as an Adjunct Instructor of Typography. [More: extended bios page].


A collaborative partner in the studio since 2004, Matt is involved in all aspects of the work of the studio with a primary focus on creative direction, client support and strategic planning. 

Matt also teaches graphic design in the Department of Art at the University of Tennessee - Chattanooga (where he also serves as Head of the department). He is a founding Board member of Chattanooga AIGA, and has been active member of a number arts nonprofit boards. He holds a MFA in Design from the University of Iowa (1997) and a BA in Advertising from Western Kentucky University (1993), and has been working professionally as a designer throughout his teaching career. [More: extended bios page].


Caleb has collaborated with Widgets since 2002. Serving as a creative director – and the writer (plus head of his own communications company, 26Tools) – he develops the studio's understanding of clients and their audiences, leads discovery, strategically directs creative work, and generally helps us think about of how brands launch into and live in the world. He also writes award-winning copy.

Along with years of real world experience in communications design and working to improve sustainability in design industries, Caleb holds a couple of graduate degrees and has served on the faculty of a liberal arts college. He holds a Masters in literature from the University of Nottingham England/Université d'Orléans France and a Masters in theology from a seminary, as well as a BA in English with Art History and Philosophy. [More: extended bios page].


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