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Abalone shell and Mother of Pearl are traditional materials that have been used by craftsmen through the centuries for a variety of different decorative projects. The shell veneers that we stock are slightly thinner than those used for traditional furniture inlay and this makes them particularly suitable for adding accents to the back of glass as seen in many specialist signwriting and reverse glass applications. It also makes it ideal for application to the front of a variety of surface finishing and decorative projects, giving the effect of abalone inlays at a cost-effective price. This is particularly interesting for the yacht, hotel or high-end interiors industries.
Each sheet consists of smaller strips of natural shell that have been thinly sawn by hand from ethically sourced abalone shell and mother of pearl. The strips are colour matched before being bound together by epoxy giving each sheet a pleasant and uniform colouring, but some variation will exist from sheet to sheet.
Some sheets are translucent, and the appearance of colour will vary based on the colours underneath the sheet. Using a differently coloured surface or even a metallic one beneath, such as gold, will give different effects. Since the material is very thin, they have a high level of transparency allowing light to pass through, adding to its decorative effect when used on glass. Some sheets are already backed with colour and this enhances certain patterns . A dark or black backing will show the full depth of colour and pattern of the shell.
It is also important to bear in mind when buying and using abalone that the visual appearance and colours of the sheet vary depending on lighting and angle of viewing. Also, as it is a natural material there can be some variations in colour. We recommend creating test pieces when using the sheets before going into full-scale production.
This product comes supplied as a single sheet, measuring 24cm x 14cm. Other larger sizes are available to order. At the moment 20cm x 20cm or 30cm x 30cm. Larger sheets may be possible on some designs but please contact our office for further information. Lead time approx. 6-8 weeks