Scissors

Personal Selection

My design choice is the common pair of household scissors. Scissors are used to cut a variety of materials and are commonly taken for granted. Scissors often get tossed in the junk drawer, forgotten or misplaced. In the kitchen knives are used, in place of scissors,often dangerously to open packaging. A pair of scissors provide safe and easy cutting. As a design student I’m always forgetting the convenience of scissors instead of a single blade tool and often wishing I had a pair.

History

According to the New World Encyclopedia early scissors, often called spring scissors, were two bronze blades connected by a thin curved metal strip. These and other early versions were found in Mesopotamia, Ancient Egypt, Rome and Europe. The oldest scissors discovered are 3000–4000 years old. The modern invention of the scissors though is credited to a few people. Often recognition goes to Leonardo Davinci however 200+ years later Robert Hinchliffe was the first to produce modern scissors from hardened steel in 1761.

Function

Scissors were created for a specific use, to cut with more control. This use though serves a variety of purposes. Many different professionals use scissors and specialized scissors daily. Craft scissors give interesting designs in their cut instead of a straight line. Gardening shears have different sized blades and handles. Hair stylists use extremely sharp scissors and metal cutters have short blades and long handles for force.

User

Scissors are used by a variety of people and different groups. There are many types of users such as left-handed, professionals, and different age ranges. Small alterations have been made to better fit those users but the design has always stayed generally the same. Left-handed scissors have been manufactured for years now as well as specialized scissors meant to cut different materials of certain strengths. Hairstylists use very sharp blades where as children have dull blades and a round point. Scissors often have grips designed to assist its user in both control and comfort. Various groups of users are more dominant in use than others however scissors are still a very common household item.

Materials and Production

Over the years scissors have been made of various materials including metals, plastic and rubber. Originally scissors were only made of metal including the handles such as bronze and irons. The modern scissors have more comfortable handles made of plastic and some even have a rubber piece on the grip. Scissors have previously been hand crafted of heavy metal. Today however due to innovation scissors are in mass production with both plastic and metal materials.

Affordance

Scissors are designed to cut materials of various strengths. They’re appearance suggests nothing but. The material to be cut goes between the two blades and you squeeze them together. Their pivot point or where the two blades, when open, meet at is the strongest point. This explains why cutters such as bolt cutters have short blades. The strength is its focus and keeping the blade short allows for little error in cutting correctly and easily. Modern day scissors have handles with two holes. One hole is often larger than the other to suggest there is one way to hold them.

Sources:

Bellis, Mary. “The First Scissors and Who Invented Them.” ThoughtCo, www.thoughtco.com/who-invented-scissors-4070946

“Scissors.” Scissors — New World Encyclopedia, www.newworldencyclopedia.org/entry/Scissors.

Phoyograph sources:

upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/c/c1/Turkish_shears%2C_2nd_century.jpg/220px-Turkish_shears%2C_2nd_century.jpg.

www.andreaschewedesign.com/uploads/1/4/1/4/14148288/2891385_orig.jpg.

cdn0.rubylane.com/shops/antiquefreak/scissors2.1G.jpg?91.

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