All About Sea Silk

We all know that silk in itself is a luxurious fiber to work with, but did you know that you can find silk underwater? It's known as "sea silk" and it's perhaps the rarest in the world. What's unique about it is that it's produced by an unlikely candidate: the clam, specifically from its spit. 


It may sound a bit strange, but the thread, known as "bysuss," is secreted by large clams to attach themselves to rocks. What's even stranger is that there's only one–yes, one–person left on Earth who knows how to harvest and spin the material.

That person is Chiara Vigo, a resident of the island Sant'Antioco in Sardinia, who dives up to 400 times to harvest the rare material. Since the clams are a protected species, she is always accompanied by the Italian coastguard so as not to disturb them or their natural habitat. Once harvested, she uses the material to make beautiful garments, bracelets, and lace. However, since bysuss is so rare, none of her items are for sale.


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