© Sauerbruch Hutton

The family of door handles for FSB came into being as a result of our frustration with offset door handles: when used with narrow-framed doors, typical lever handles are crudely cut off at the shank and given a staggered offset in order to prevent users from getting their thumbs caught between the door leaf and the frame. This corrective treatment drastically detracts from the original form in many cases (such as designs by Wagenfeld), which has made us reluctant to specify handles of this kind.

So in the end we developed our own form. This also addresses the drawbacks of the safety handle, which has a return end to prevent clothing getting caught on it as people pass along escape routes. We began with the worst-case scenario: a safety handle on a narrow-framed door – that is, one that has both an offset and a return end.

From this starting point we designed a family of handles, adding our own criterion that the form should be developed entirely from the ergonomics of gripping the handle. The goal was, in other words, not primarily to create a signature style but to fulfil a real purpose, devoid of ideology.

The design overcomes the need for differentiation between handles for solid-core and framed doors, as well as between escape route doors and ordinary doors, with a consistent formal language for all applications. For window handles, too, this reinterpreted principle yields a friendly and distinctive component: the handle fits the hand comfortably, and the asymmetry of its grip indicates the direction in which the window opens.


  • Product design: a series of door and window handles


  • Franz Schneider Brakel GmbH + Co. KG


  • 2012 — 2013

project team

  • Meta Popp