Sea Shells

The word 'sea shell' is used to refer to the exoskeleton of mollusks. However, these hard and protective outer layers are not only obtained from mollusks. There are numerous other marine organism from who, shells are obtained. The exoskeleton or the internal shells are generally found on beaches. After the death of the marine animals, these shells are washed up on beaches, later picked up by beachcombers. Sea ShellsRight from the pre-historic times, shells have in use by humans for different purposes. They have been mostly used in jewellery and for other means of adornment.

Since shells can be threaded like beads, they are also used to adorn fashion garments and other dress materials meant for traditional celebrations. Though natural sea shells can be used whole in the form of beads, it is really hard to obtain them in abundance. Therefore, cheaper imitations are also available. These are either cut from the thin shells of various marine organisms or are made from plastic. Sea shells have seen their wide use in making pendants, beads, buttons, brooches and rings among others.

Sea shells also have a keen association with religion and spirituality. The flag of Travancore (India) had a chank shell on it. Christians believe the scallop shell to be a symbol of Saint James the Great. In Hinduism as well, the sacred chank shell is believed to be associated with Lord Vishnu. Various shells are also used in the form of ritual objects. In southern India, cowries are known to have astrological significance. They can be used to make astrological predictions.

A sea shell can either be external or internal, depending on the species of mollusk from which it is obtained. In terms of structure, they can be single-valved or bivalved. Most common sea shells are procured from large sandy beaches or in sheltered lagoons.

At Sherwani Store, our craftsmen use sea shells of various shapes and shades to decorate Sherwanis and other traditional garments. These shells are mostly used to adorn sleeves and the border area. The size and the density of the shell designs can be decided beforehand as per individual requirements. Garments fashioned with sea shells are mostly preferred by the Bengali and the Hindu community. However, as they are becoming more and more popular, people of other communities as well as beginning to like these adornments on their clothing.