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September 6, 2012 11:59 am

Israeli Fashion Design Student Uses Live Bacteria in Her Jewelry and Clothing (PHOTOS)

avatar by Algemeiner Staff

One of Zaken's designs using colored bacteria. Photo: NoCamels.

For her final project, third year fashion design student Sarine Zaken decided to use live bacteria to form patterns which she then implemented into her jewelry and clothing pieces.

“I had a fantasy to bring some life into my design,” Zaken told the website NoCamels.  “I was talking to a friend who studies at Tel Aviv University, and during our conversation he pulled out his phone and showed me a picture of this type of bacteria that a researcher in a lab next door was investigating. This bacteria strain, called Paenibacillaceae, grows into various fascinating patterns.”

Jewelry item designed by Zaken using bacteria. Photo: NoCamels.

After receiving the go ahead from Professor Eshel Ben Jacob, who was working in a lab with the bacteria, Zakel began her “ecocouture” project by growing and manipulating the bacteria into different patterns and then dying them different colors before implementing them into jewelry and clothing items.

“Now I know how to control them but we are talking about millions of bacteria, so you never know exactly what will happen,” she told NoCamels.  “I like to think I’m communicating with them – sometimes it works and sometimes not so much.”

Zaken, a student at Shenkar College of Engineering and Design in Israel, intends to sell her innovative fashion items to the haute couture fashion industry.

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