Freewheeling

Oyster farmers on my island drive big tractors. (Oysters get to move around a lot from the oysterbeds at sea to the marshes where they mature).

When the inner tubing from those big wheels are too old, they are recycled a first time: cut into long strips and tied to the racks in the oysterbeds, they gently move with the flow and thus prevent the mud building up too fast around the racks. Then a storm comes along, tears them off and drags them back to the beaches... where I collect them to recycle them again.

Upcycling is the trendy word. I just call it re-use. I love this.

I love the fact that this incredible material is strong enough to sustain one, two, three lifetimes of labour.

I love the fact that this most manly piece of work equipement can after several lifetimes become a piece of jewellery.

I love the touch, the feel, the matt surface of this beguiling material. I love that it is both natural and synthetic, I love that it's always black though largely made with the milky white sap of the hevea.


I love wearing it because it has a very special, unmistakable feeling to it, smooth, soft, warm, like skin almost.