Oh no, it's a singular, unique object of design!

Yang Di
Mohno studio is a design practice named after three key words: mo-no, which means "object" in Japanese, mono, as in singular and unique, and 'Oh-no!' as an expression of surprise.
Yang Di
Oh no, it's a singular, unique object of design!
Courtesy of Mohno studio / Ti Gong

Nicole Gong and Alex Zheng

Who are they?

Mohno studio is a design practice named after three key words: mo-no, which means "object" in Japanese, mono, as in singular and unique, and 'Oh-no!' as an expression of surprise. The studio focuses on creating honest, functional and curious objects.

Mohno was founded by Nicole Gong and Alex Zheng. The two met while students at the Rhode Island School of Design. Their works have been featured in design magazines such as Dwell, Dezeen, Designmilk and Yankodesign.

Please share with us some of your works, and name the one you are most proud of.

Of all of our projects, our newest and favorite has to be the Appétit Rugs (Wool, 2021). People say "bon appétit!" before dining to wish others a good meal. This expression was the inspiration behind the Appétit Rug collection. We believe rugs are like a welcoming host to a party. They are usually the object that connects all other objects in a space. It was quite exciting to be more expressive in color and shapes in them.

What is your current project?

By participating in the TALENTS program of Design Shanghai in June, we got the opportunity to collaborate with Wallpaper Magazine's first store in Shanghai on some exciting products. Stay tuned!

Describe your design style.

We always strive to inject a mixture of calmness and happiness into our designs. We believe whether it's something as large as a piece of furniture or as small as a candle holder, objects should bring joy to any space.

Where are you most creative?

In terms of physical space, we are definitely in the best creative mode in our studio.

What does your home mean to you?

Alex: A place to recharge and spend time with myself.

Nicole: A place where I am most comfortable staying.

What do you collect?

Alex: Nice bottles and packaging boxes. Also anything small and cute.

Nicole: Stickers, any kind, and also writing goods.

What will be the next big design trend?

While we are not forecasters, we believe there will be a bigger need for original, unconventional and expressive design styles, especially in the post-pandemic world, since people have stayed at home more and started to think more deeply about how they want to live.

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