Sunday, February 3, 2013

Pacific Blue Mussel Sconces

after almost 20 years in the Pacific Northwest, i think i'm finally getting a hang of this theme - local, organic, sustainable...

presenting the Blue Mussel Sconce set; a shape inspired by the functional works of the lighting obsessed architect Poul Henningsen, adorned with the abundant fruit of the northern Pacific Ocean.

everything on this sconce (and its clone - yes, there is a second one) is recycled...well almost; the bulb is new, as is the sterling silver coating on each shell back (about an ounce or so in total).

the project began with a 2 pound dinner of moules frites (if you are not familiar with this dish, i highly encourage you to become acquainted)...along with the dirty dishes about 50 pairs of shells needed a severe scrubbing. the shells were cleaned, boiled and bathed in blue food coloring (this enhances the vibrancy of the bivalve's inside lining) for a few days.  while still soft from the soaking, 2 holes needed to be drilled into each shell to enable interlinking with silver wire rings (hand made)...

now for the non-recycled part. the black outer side of the shells didn't have the appeal i was looking for, coating them in reflective sterling silver achieved the industrial look i intended.

the fixtures themselves hailed from some derelict 1960s roadside motel - stripped down to the bare metal and updated with a set of reclaimed brass rings (hand shaped) - finished with a matte silver powder-coat.

...oh, and the 2 bottles of rose that accompanied the a fore mentioned dinner, had their top and bottom cut off to create a set of hurricane candle cylinders to shield the bulb...

 ...i also drew up a nice looking blueprint :)