In Chris Schwarz Blog, Woodworking Blogs, Woodworking Hand Tools

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Well-made high-carbon scissors are a joy to use and are indispensable in my shop for cutting paper patterns to shape, trimming veneer and 100 other tasks.

For years I used junky office scissors but finally got my hands on a pair of traditional hot-forged dress makers shears from Clauss. Despite their reasonable cost (less than $20), they are like wielding a custom tool. They are perfectly balanced, polished and properly ground. Oh, and they are made in Italy.

The Clauss are designed for a lifetime of use and can be easily disassembled for regrinding or repair. And the steel is fantastic. I have used these every day in the shop for more than three years and they are as sharp as they day I bought them.

You can buy Clauss shears from a variety of suppliers, including Amazon. This model is the 3318 and is the 8″ version, also available here.

— Christopher Schwarz

This entry kicks off this year’s gift guide. If you haven’t read my gift guides from past years, here’s the deal: I bought all this stuff with my own money and use it in my shop. I am not paid to promote any of these items. There are no affiliate links. I don’t receive any kickback if you purchase these items. In other word, this is unlike almost all the other “gift guides” out there.

If you’d like to read gift guides from past years, check this link.

Product Recommendations

Here are some supplies and tools we find essential in our everyday work around the shop. We may receive a commission from sales referred by our links; however, we have carefully selected these products for their usefulness and quality.

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Showing 6 comments
  • polaski

    When it came time to clean out my parents house, I found that I was preceded by my older sister, who plundered everything she thought would be of value. In my mother’s dresser drawer, however, I found a pair of her own mother’s shears (regular and pinking). Solid as the day they were made almost a century ago. You see, my grandmother worked the family tailor shop all her life. LaCross, Italy.

    My sister conceivably didn’t even know what they were, but I did. Stupid is as stupid does.

    By the way, Paul Sellers once blogged on sharpening his mother’s scissors in his youth.

  • William

    I also have a number of Ginghers, who, incidentally, offer a sharpening service for their scissors. One thing they mention on the sharpening page is that scissors designed for fabric shouldn’t be used for paper.

  • willarda

    Another excellent brand of scissors is Gingher. My mom was a seamstress and knew scissors like the back of her hand. My brother and I were required to be proficient in sewing before we could leave home! I used to do a lot of quilting and these are excellent for fabric. Then at a tool meet a lady was selling Ginghers dirt cheap and I bought 4 pairs, gave one pair to DeeDee and I use the rest around the shop and office.

  • blefty

    I wonder if they make left-handed shears.


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