Fish bones, bivalve shells, crab and lobster carapaces, and other skeletal remains are typically grist for the compost or landfill, but why should they be? Moe Nagata, a graduate of Central Saint Martins’ Textile Futures program, sees the potential in natural materials discarded by the food industry, particularly in the field of jewelry design. Inspired by animism, a tribal worldview that ascribes spiritual essences to animals, plants, and even inanimate objects, Nagata’s From Creatures collection addresses our cavalier attitude toward waste and unchecked consumption—two relatively modern phenomena.

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“Traditional tribes hunted animals for food, then used every last piece of the animal to make product,” she says. “This resourceful approach conveyed a solid respect of the natural world.”

Painted, lacquered, and dipped in gold, the discarded items undergo a startling transformation.

Painted, lacquered, dipped in gold, then strung from metal and braided-textile findings, the discarded items undergo a startling—and stunning—transformation. “This collection is the ultimate celebration of nature and natural materials,” Nagata adds.

+ From Creatures

+ Moe Nagata