While there are several cast oyster belt buckles circulating in the marketplace, ours is the only cast from the important and imperiled Chesapeake Oyster, Crassostrea virginica.
The Chesapeake oyster is a keystone species of The Chesapeake Bay, an ecologically, culturally, and economically significant estuary on the east coast of the United States. It is estimated that less than 1% of the 17th-century oyster population still exists. Oysters provide habitat for fish and invertebrates, improve water quality, and filter out pollutants. Restoration of this keystone species is a significant priority for many environmental and community groups throughout the region. 100% of the profits from your purchase goes to support research, recovery, and resilience in the the Chesapeake Bary watershed.
Sustainable and Handcrafted
The St. Mary's River Watershed Association, whose mission is "To Protect, Improve, and Promote the well-being of the St. Mary's River Watershed through the collaborative efforts of economic, agricultural, environmental, social, cultural, and political stakeholders in the community," allowed us to comb though a midden of sustainably harvested oyster shells to find the model for our belt buckle.
Using a lost wax casting process, the model shell was hand cast to produce a mold, which was then used to cast an original sculpture. Art buckle maker extraordinaire Bernard Kelly transformed the shell sculpture into our beautiful buckle, available in three metals: Brass, White Bronze silver, and Red Bronze. All the metals used in our buckles are recycled from salvaged metals. Brass buckles are a combination of copper and zinc. White bronze silver is made up of copper, zinc, and nickle. Red bronze is an amalgam of copper and tin.
The buckles measures 2 1/4 inches long x 1 1/2 inches tall, and accepts a belt up to 1 3/8 inches wide, making them the perfect size for both men and women.