This no-screws Dougong Table assembles like Lego and looks like art

Alright, who is ready for a table that looks like art and does not come with a frustrating IKEA assembly guide? Because Boston-based designer Mian Wei has created this beautiful piece of furniture that marries minimal aesthetic with cultural heritage. The Dougong blocks from ancient Chinese architecture play a central role in the build and concept of the grid table – think of it as an advanced Lego challenge! Mian Wei won the Silver A’Design Award for this grid table in the homeware and furniture category, showcasing his exceptional skills as a multimedia artist who brings to life ideas that blend industrial design and emotions seamlessly.

This is a no screws assembly – yes – there is no need to keep a track of the different screw sizes and the tiny anvil! The grid table relies on the ages-old Dougong method of interlocking blocks so effectively that it not only distributes weight evenly but also lays a strong foundation while experiencing history. The supporting structure (Dougong) is made of modular parts that can be easily disassembled and reassembled in need of storage and moving. The bracket connectors (Gong) slide easily into the beams (Dou) to form the weight-bearing structure and retain structural integrity when the table is being lifted. It is made of ash, maple, and plywood which brings tone and texture ‘to the table’ (I just had to take that opportunity!).

“This project, on the one hand, tries to go back to the root to reinvestigate the practicality and scalability and bring new life to the ancient tradition. On the other hand, the project seeks to explore new aesthetic possibilities of the structure with modern forms and production techniques” says Mian Wei. The grid table gives form to the visual of wisdom and can be a stand-alone accent piece in the room (while also holding your tea and books!) without being too bold. The table is minimal yet so intricate in what can only be described as ‘engineered art’. As the owner builds the table, the complexity fades away, and the sensible nature reveals itself – the complete opposite of what I have ever felt while assembling the simplest chest of drawers in my home.

Designer: Mian Wei

The no-tug plug

Over the past five years we’ve reinvented the USB, the MicroUSB, we’ve bettered the lightning connector, the thunderbolt connector. However, for decades, our stupid socket plug has been the same. It still differs from country to country, and more importantly, it’s still an absolute nightmare to pull the plug out of the socket without a good grip. We’ve seen countless concepts solve the problem on Yanko Design, so much so that we have an exhaustive bank of design ideas solving the same problem differently. Here’s one more for the collection!

The Safeplug is actually pretty easy to implement, given that it doesn’t change plug-socket standards. In fact, its design detail can be implemented on virtually any type of plug to make them easily retractable. The plug design comes in two broad parts. An outer sleeve with retraction flaps, and the inner plug component that slides back and forth. Lift the flaps up and the plug slides inwards, like a turtle into a shell, pulling itself out of the socket with absolute ease!

Designer: Mian Wei







Clean Teeth, Clean Earth


The Droplet project aims to redesigned the electric toothbrush to be just as easy to use as a non-electric one AND do as little harm as possible to the environment! The design uses a vibration motor similar to ones used in smartphones. This drastically reduced the overall size and minimized the part that needs replacement. Now, users no longer have to replace the entire head. This further minimizes waste. When it comes time to cycle out the cleaning head, simply interchange a smaller tip made of silicon that’s easier to recycle.

Designer: Mian Wei