The door handle is a ubiquitous tool that anyone could picture the metallic mechanism on the side of a door. The catalyst used to breaking the restrictive barrier of doors, we reach with our hand and the mechanism does the rest. When the function is so concise, the form becomes secondary. But what if we can emphasize its function through its form?
This project was an exploration of form through the personal interaction with a door handle.
In my experience, there was a door handle* that stuck out to me in my childhood. It was a lever latch door handle, right between the kitchen and the living room, and was the easiest to open. I could go between the two spaces where the family would gather. While doors are typically seen as restrictive barriers that divides a space, that door became a transitionary boundary that allowed me to enter social family spaces in our home. The door handle thus became a stimulus that made me want to engage with it more.
So how do we emphasize its functional significance in its form?
The basic form of the door handle starts with a back plate, flushed to the door, with a L-shaped bar that protrudes toward us. Parallel, to the door, the longest part of the door handle is almost spear like and can be uninviting.
I took inspiration from handles that were intriguing and fun.
I was drawn to the ellipsoidal form for its increased volume allowing more areas of contact. The loop and its continuous form draws intrigue due to its unconventional shape for a door handle.
I went onto working in 3D to understand the feel of the handle and refining the finer details.
2D and 3D Sketches
To add more intrigue to the form, I decided to move the spindle and mechanism behind the back plate. It will be attached to the lever by a tab-like structure that is hidden behind the lever, giving the lever a floated effect.