CREATORS OF BIG BLUE SHELLS AND CORALS You'd be forgiven for thinking the shelled beauties on the table in the picture [above) are real. But make no mistake - these and other pieces from the Big Blue Company's collection have been painstakingly made to resemble the real deal. Launched in November last year, Big Blue Company was started by design duo Katherine Whitehead and Jacqueline Kelly. It was a snorkelling trip around one of the islands near Bintan that sparked off the idea of a business venture together. "We came across many large and extraordinarily beautiful washed-up giant clams and pieces of coral." recalls Jacqueline. Our immediate urge was to take some home with us, but we knew that in doing so, one harms the fragile marine eco systems." It then dawned upon them that there's an enduring fascination for such treasures from the sea. The duo then decided to work out an innovative way of making eco-friendly reproductions of giant clams, corals and shells in stone and resin as objets d'art. The process-from conceptualising to production and planning the launch - took a year. The designs were created with the help of 3-D printing technology, with both Jacqueline and Katherine pulling out all the stops to ensure the products in the inaugural collection look and feel just like their endangered counterparts. The pair sank deep into research, delving into conchology, using an underwater camera to find the tight composition of the corals, and looking for the right community of artisans in China to craft their designs into being. Big Blue's creations come in a myriad of shapes and sizes, from the smaller pieces in the -Beach on a Plate" collection, to giant 50cm-wide clams and statement-making pieces in the colossal "sculpture" range, which can measure over 2m and weigh up to 30kg. The founders want to play an active role in ocean conservation projects. "We want Big Blue to become synonymous with conservation." says Jacqueline. For a start, it supports the Garden City Fund's Plant-A-Coral, Seed-A-Reef programme at the Sisters' Islands Marine Park.