During London’s Covid-19 lockdown, part of my daily routine was going to the local grocers where I live. In this shop there are three huge trays of various onion on display. Piles of onions, one on top another and in between them broken shiny skins. I was mesmerised by their colours and patterns, each unique, and yet overlooked and disregarded. After asking the greengrocer what happens to the old skins. He told me that every other day the trays are re-stocked, and the skins are thrown away. Since then, for almost for 7 months I’ve visited the shop and collected the onion skins. I say hello to the greengrocer, we casually chat about life, our shared experience as foreigners in such a busy, cosmopolitan city. A simple local interaction, while I collect their `trash’, my jewel.

In my final collection I focus on onion skin waste. Onions are an ancient vegetable which serve as a core ingredient in many cuisines world-wide. Onions have remarkable antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties with a strong and distinct flavour. Onion skins have been used as a sustainable alternative to dye fabrics for many years. Whilst considered quite a basic vegetable; the colour palette of onion skins is incredibly unique. Yet, when using the colour pigment in fabric dying, until now the onion shields themselves are not the main star of the show.

After I collect the skins the first thing is to organize them according to shade and thickness. All the patterns I make are handmade. I cut and manipulate the skins using scissors.

Early patterns tests: understanding how best to work with this material required a long development process. I started by inlaying the skins, almost like micro-thin wood veneers. As I immersed myself in my work I felt a strong connection to this philosophy and new methodology. Shining the spotlight on unusual and often underestimated materials, especially using a transformative process to craft something new, excited me.

As I only collect the skins from the grocers, I am totally dependent on their stock. therefore, every day I get different types of skins and colour palette to work with. Almost like seasonal cooking, I surrender to nature’s rhythms and patterns. Letting nature lead me, designing a new function and value. Part of my deisgn process is through the making. Studying the material qualities. Every piece gives a birth to a new one. Some shlieds have natural bautiful textures that revealing to me while im making; that and even spontaneous accidents I find along the way can manouver the plan and be incoporate in the final design.

I collected the skins for 7 months. During this period I always kept a special box of the unique and rare-featured skins that I discovered along the way.I used them on this bangle and the process inspired its name. This pattern is free hand colour degradation and incorporates all the most interesting skins.