Pencil Door Handle

Siyang Amanda Gong

I designed this door handle which was inspired by both Massimo Vignelli’s handle studies (prototypes found in archives) and by his pencil of choice (Lead Holder). The faceted pencil shape provides the ergonomic grip. The red detail provides a visual cue to identify when the door is locked.

Pencil Door Handle Open

Pencil Door Handle LockedPencil Door Handle Interaction



Fustial Handle

Analysis of materials

Manufactured from the finest solid brass and stainless steel, and available in a variety of inspirational finishes.

Manufacturing technology

Fusion techniques, the use of molds and dyes and the techniques employed for various other materials, such as plastics.

Client agenda

Nearly eighty years ago, Pasquale Valli secured a position at an umbrella factory in Veduggio, Italy. While umbrellas of the time looked exactly the same-somber, dark and gloomy-the treatment reserved for the handle itself was widely different.

The handle articulated the true personality of umbrella and it was this piece that captured a buyer’s attention. The touch and the contact between a consumer and an innovatively designed object is very important.

Designer goals

The Fusital brand was created to meet the high quality interior specifications demanded by many architects, fascinated with the ergonomic relationship between hand and object. These handles and fittings bring opulence and exclusivity to both traditional and contemporary specifications within private residences, hotels, commercial premises, public offices and theaters.

Research Citation

“Valli & Valli.” Valli & Valli. Web. 15 May 2012.


I was inspired by both Massimo Vignelli’s handle studies (prototypes found in archives) and by his pencil of choice (Lead Holder). Massimo Vignelli’s handle prototypes are concise and elegant and show the ergonomic grip. In my opinion, the classic pencil is a good example for grip. So I designed my door handle as a pencil shape. People are always confused by when the door is locked, so the red part can show a clear situation of the door. For example, when the door is locked, the red part will disappear.

Pencil Door Handle - Reference1

Pencil Door Handle - Reference2Pencil Door Handle - Reference3


“Handles are often too small, too stiff, sharp and confusing to use.” Door handle should be easy to be opened by soapy hand and arthritis. Additionally it should let people enjoy to use. So, I made a lot of mock up of door handles to search which shape is the most comfortable. Then I found the Six Prism Shapes provide the best grip. So I built the model, printed out the prototype, finished and painted it.

Pencil Door Handle - Process2

Pencil Door Handle - Process1Pencil Door Handle - Process3