Good Design, Everyday Objects: Scissors

Several years ago I saw a man ask science-fiction writer Neal Stephenson what he thought was mankind's greatest technological achievement, and Stephenson thought about it for a moment and said he thought scissors were pretty cool. The questioner was probably hoping he was going to say "the self-aware robot I secretly built in my basement," but I was just thrilled to see scissors finally get the attention they deserve.

I can be a little weird about scissors, but I don't think anybody can sew as much as I do without getting at least a little weird about scissors. When my college boyfriend first moved in with me, I tied little blue ribbons to all my special sewing scissors and sat him down for a very serious talk about how the blue-ribboned scissors were made of lava and he should never, ever touch them for anything. At this point, he's pretty much convinced that good scissors are as fragile as glass and expensive as diamonds. (They're not, but I don't intend to disabuse him of the notion.)

From the clean, architectonic lines of modernist desk shears to the gold-dipped curlicues of my grandmother's embroidery snips, few things beat a good pair of scissors for the perfect union of form and function.

1. Craft Design Technology Scissors, Occulter, $72.00
2. Portable Pen Scissors, Muji, $9.25
3. Wicked Step Scissors, Sublime Stitching, $12.50
4. Tajika Cast Iron Scissors, Mjolk, $45-$85
5. Gingher 8" Bent Trimmer Shears, Joann, $36.99
6. Owl Scissors, Sublime Stitching, $20
7. Karim Rashid Sculptural Scissors, MOMA, $26
8. Think Bamboo Embroidery Scissors with Leg-Shaped Handles, Amazon, $13.88
9. Laser-Guided Scissors, Think Geek, $15.99

(Images: As linked above)

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