How it all began...

The Founders

Faring from the UK, we’re two expats who’ve lived in Singapore for the past 24 years between us, juggling careers, families and manic lives. 

Jacqueline, an interior designer by trade, received her training in Nice before moving to Paris as an assistant stylist, scouring flea markets and antique shops whilst working for a major design house. She enjoyed a successful career styling residential and commercial properties across Europe for twenty odd years before moving to Singapore - never knowingly without a paint chart in her handbag. Katherine gained her worldly experience working for one of the biggest advertising companies in the world, moving her family with her across the seas before settling in Singapore. An extensive traveller, she has built an envious collection of meaningful pieces that now adorn her home. She would put her eagle eye for detail down to her years of helping big brands tell stories... her penchant for a well composed vignette remains a mystery. 

Our Big Blue idea

Our Big Blue adventure began about a year ago in the shallow waters off a remote island in Indonesia. Bobbing along in the clear waters, we came across the most beautiful yet sad sight. Giant clam shells, half buried in the sand, were washed up on the shore in the shallow waters. Looking at them, we thought how strikingly beautiful they were. A ghostly reminder of Nature’s perfect design as these giant clams were no longer living creatures, but empty shells. We thought how we would love to take one as a trinket to treasure, but knowing that import/export restrictions would make that impossible. 

Giant clam on the beachWalking along the beach with snorkel and flippers in hand, salty air and the morning sun casting shadows off the clam shells in the sand, we had an idea. We would somehow recreate these beautiful shells and all they stand for - the ocean, nature, that day on the beach - so that people who didn’t live on a beach could treasure them too. We were reminded of collecting seashells when young and the feeling that you used to get. That feeling is what we wanted to recreate above anything else. 

Resolved in our idea, we began planning before we’d put our flippers down. What materials we would use, and how on earth we would do it. Once we began researching fully we learnt some home truths that went on to form the backbone of our company and the heart of our philosophy.

Protecting our oceans

Beautiful shells like the giant clams we found are part of an incredibly fragile marine ecosystem. An ecosystem that is being destroyed by human impact. Thanks to humans, we have already lost 27% of the world’s coral reefs with a further 60% in the next thirty years inevitable if we don’t change what we’re doing right now. If you are now feeling as we did when we found this out - sad, rather small, and helpless - we’re not surprised. What can we all do to reverse damage on such scale? 

How we can help

The answer is that we can all do our bit to protect and maintain healthy marine ecosystems by being responsible travellers and consumers. This means, when on holiday, to leave shells uncollected on the beach so they can play their part in being recycled back into the sand. This may sound like nothing, but imagine how many people there are in the world and imagine if each person collected a few innocent shells. That’s billions if not trillions of shells that are taken away from beaches, massively disrupting Nature’s circle of life. 

Secondly, we mustn’t buy real, endangered products. The trade for real rare shells in Asia is considered to be as harmful and barbaric as the ivory trade. A trade that is fuelled by consumer demand - when the demand stops, so does the trade. The methods used in South China Sea alone - dredging the coral reef floor with fast spinning motors to tear apart a ten thousand year old coral reef - says it all. Sadly, its easier to sympathise with elephants than it is with giant mollusks with no face that live fathoms under the sea. 

Big Blue Company is here to give a voice to our coral reefs and to hopefully make a small difference. Though our core idea remains to create beautiful things to style our homes, we will do so sustainably, responsibly and we want to do what we can to help the plight of coral reefs around the world. 

Open for business

After a year of finding the right partner who shares our values and vision, product development and bringing Big Blue Company to life, we are now open for business. There is a wild, timeless beauty to anything foraged from the ocean that we wanted to capture so that our pieces can enhance any space in the house, rather than simply furnishing a ‘coastal decor’. 

We may have begun with nothing more than a couple of GCSEs in chemistry and a love of all things that come from the sea, but we now feel like we have a PHD in material composition and marine biology, partnerships with marine conservation projects around the world to play our part in saving coral reefs, and our first collection has finally come to life. 

Knowing that you are helping the oceans rather than taking from them turns out to be a far greater feeling than collecting shells on the beach after all. 

Join us on Facebook, Instagram and Pinterest for updates on our collection, conservation efforts and styling ideas. 

 

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