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Stork Scissors

They have been around for a long time. Grandma had them, and probably everyone’s grandma had a pair which she then gave to a children or a grandchildren fascinated by its forms. But what makes them so special?

Stork scissors may have originated as a midwife’s tool, in the 19th century. As these women sometimes had to wait around for babies to be born, they may have worked on their needlework, and used their medical — stork — scissors to clip threads.

It also transpires that they weren’t actually scissors and more clamps — an essential part of a midwife’s kit — to stop the blood flow in a new born baby’s umbilical cord after birth. The clamps were shaped like storks because storks have long been associated with babies. The clamps also came with a set of forceps to help deliver babies and these often featured snakes or were shaped like a snake — in Greek mythology, associated with healing and medicine through the serpent-entwined rod wielded by the god Asclepius.

Anyway, these scissors are widely available today, still, and are very popular amongst needleworkers. Bohin and DOVO make nice versions.

They have also achieved some popularity as the character Adelaide’s scissors in the Over the Garden Wall animated television miniseries created by Patrick McHale for Cartoon Network. Many people could not resist their charm and got them tattooed on their skin.

More on
www.caterpillarcrossstitch.com

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