The thing about...; the left-handed shop

The days are gone, when being left-handed constituted a passport to the ducking stool, but life for lefties - as Tony Benn would tell you - is not entirely a bed of red roses. This substantial minority, (roughly a tenth of the population) still faces daily irritations, from loo-roll holders placed slightly back on the right-hand side to etiquette demanding that they cut tough steaks with their weaker hand.

Most household chores are a bigger bore for the left-hander. If you're one of the nine-in-ten, you probably never stop to think about the way your tools are designed. That slotted spatula you fry with for instance: you've probably never even noticed that it's end is slanted so that you can run it round the outside of the pan and scoop everything into the middle. Try doing it with your left hand. Everything tips out onto the stove instead.

My favourite lefty has sliced herself open three times on my Swiss Army Knife and is incapable of opening a wine bottle. Left-handers are generally quite adept at adjusting to the realities of life, but she longs for just a few tools of her own: a kitchen knife with the serrations on the right, a saucepan with a reversed pouring lip, a corkscrew that doesn't involve pushing the wrist inwards to turn it. "I don't think about it much," she says, "until I order a cake and they give me one of those stupid pastry forks with the double tine on the left. What am I supposed to do with that?".

The championing of this particular minority group falls to the Left Handers Club, an organisation which distributes quarterly newsletters and involves itself in the political side of things. Peter Luff MP recently tabled a set of educational questions on the subject in Parliament. Membership of the club also entitles one to 10 per cent discounts at their wonderful sister shop, Anything Left Handed, in Brewer St, London W1 (0171 437 3910). Their mail order catalogue contains everything from books to baby spoons. They carry 20 different pairs of scissors (pounds 3.25-pounds 36.95), lethal-looking Sabatiers (pounds 15.75-pounds 35.95), vegetable peelers to save skinned knuckles (pounds 1.95), calligraphy and manicure sets. If you love a left-hander, you could send them the "left-handers essential pack" (scissors, corkscrew, tin opener, potato peeler) for only pounds 13.95. Oh, and they also do pastry forks. Call 0181-770 3722 for a catalogue.

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Life and Style
ebookNow available in paperback
ebooks
ebookPart of The Independent’s new eBook series The Great Composers
Arts and Entertainment
Under the skin: Sarah Kane in May 1998
theatreThe story behind a new season of Sarah Kane plays
Arts and Entertainment
Preening: Johnny Depp in 'Mortdecai'
filmMortdecai becomes actor's fifth consecutive box office bomb
Sport
Bradford City's reward for their memorable win over Chelsea is a trip to face either Sunderland or Fulham (Getty)
football
News
Lars Andersen took up archery in his mid thirties
video
Voices
Focus E15 Mothers led a protest to highlight the lack of affordable housing in London
voicesLondon’s housing crisis amounts to an abuse of human rights, says Grace Dent
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

ES Rentals

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs General

    Recruitment Genius: Warehouse Operations & Logistics Manager

    £38000 - £42000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: One of the UK's best performing...

    Recruitment Genius: GeoDatabase Specialist - Hazard Modelling

    £35000 - £43000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Our award-winning client is one...

    Recruitment Genius: Compressed Air Pipework Installation Engineer

    £15000 - £21000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This leading provider of Atlas ...

    Recruitment Genius: Operations Coordinator - Pallet Network

    £18000 - £20000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Opportunity to join established...

    Day In a Page

    Syria crisis: Celebrities call on David Cameron to take more refugees as one young mother tells of torture by Assad regime

    Celebrities call on David Cameron to take more Syrian refugees

    One young mother tells of torture by Assad regime
    The enemy within: People who hear voices in their heads are being encouraged to talk back – with promising results

    The enemy within

    People who hear voices in their heads are being encouraged to talk back
    'In Auschwitz you got used to anything'

    'In Auschwitz you got used to anything'

    Survivors of the Nazi concentration camp remember its horror, 70 years on
    Autumn/winter menswear 2015: The uniforms that make up modern life come to the fore

    Autumn/winter menswear 2015

    The uniforms that make up modern life come to the fore
    'I'm gay, and plan to fight military homophobia'

    'I'm gay, and plan to fight military homophobia'

    Army general planning to come out
    Iraq invasion 2003: The bloody warnings six wise men gave to Tony Blair as he prepared to launch poorly planned campaign

    What the six wise men told Tony Blair

    Months before the invasion of Iraq in 2003, experts sought to warn the PM about his plans. Here, four of them recall that day
    25 years of The Independent on Sunday: The stories, the writers and the changes over the last quarter of a century

    25 years of The Independent on Sunday

    The stories, the writers and the changes over the last quarter of a century
    Homeless Veterans appeal: 'Really caring is a dangerous emotion in this kind of work'

    Homeless Veterans appeal

    As head of The Soldiers' Charity, Martin Rutledge has to temper compassion with realism. He tells Chris Green how his Army career prepared him
    Wu-Tang Clan and The Sexual Objects offer fans a chance to own the only copies of their latest albums

    Smash hit go under the hammer

    It's nice to pick up a new record once in a while, but the purchasers of two latest releases can go a step further - by buying the only copy
    Geeks who rocked the world: Documentary looks back at origins of the computer-games industry

    The geeks who rocked the world

    A new documentary looks back at origins of the computer-games industry
    Belle & Sebastian interview: Stuart Murdoch reveals how the band is taking a new direction

    Belle & Sebastian is taking a new direction

    Twenty years ago, Belle & Sebastian was a fey indie band from Glasgow. It still is – except today, as prime mover Stuart Murdoch admits, it has a global cult following, from Hollywood to South Korea
    America: Land of the free, home of the political dynasty

    America: Land of the free, home of the political dynasty

    These days in the US things are pretty much stuck where they are, both in politics and society at large, says Rupert Cornwell
    A graphic history of US civil rights – in comic book form

    A graphic history of US civil rights – in comic book form

    A veteran of the Fifties campaigns is inspiring a new generation of activists
    Winston Churchill: the enigma of a British hero

    Winston Churchill: the enigma of a British hero

    A C Benson called him 'a horrid little fellow', George Orwell would have shot him, but what a giant he seems now, says DJ Taylor
    Growing mussels: Precious freshwater shellfish are thriving in a unique green project

    Growing mussels

    Precious freshwater shellfish are thriving in a unique green project