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Simon Peers and Nicholas Godley teamed up to create materials from the silk produced from Golden Orb Spiders in Madagascar. They collected 1.2 million of these spiders and extracted their silk over the course of three years to create two golden silk capes.

This shawl is the world’s largest piece of spider-silk cloth ever created, which is now on display at the V&A Museum in London. No spiders were harmed in the making of the materials, and once the spider’s silk had been extracted, the spider was released back into the wild where they replenished their silk supplies in about a week. Each spider extracts ~30-50 m of thread each time the silk is extracted.

via Gizmodo

Emily Smith

Emily Smith is a graphic designer, illustrator, and crafter based in Vancouver. She is an avid textile artist and community organizer with a focus on facilitating collaborative and creative workspaces, teaching workshops, and organizing crafty and creative events. She enjoys foraging for unlikely materials, increasing bicycle safety and visibility, and becoming more self-sufficient while lowering her carbon footprint. Follow her on her blog at bluemollusc.com or Twitter @emilysmith2000.


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Comments

  1. Tim says:

    That sounds like a lot of work! I wonder if this will make spider silk textiles more common: http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/01/120106113037.htm

  2. yaya says:

    “No spiders were harmed in the making of the materials”
    Who gives a s**t?

  3. Jaime says:

    I do. Spiders are amazing creatures. How about a little respect for the planet?

    1. velda says:

      +1, Jamie. Spiders are a little creepy but incredibly amazing ;)

  4. 12L14 says:

    Some are amazingly delicious(sic!) too – so even more respect upon them ;)

    ps. are those shawl bulletproof? ;)

    1. Haha, give me a cent for every time I’ve heard that “ps.” question :)
      They say that spider silk is as strong as steel wire of the same thickness. I guess spiderman could use a costume made of it! (if it wasn’t shrinking so much when in contact with water…). Mayby when they make it thicker and add some hydrophobic coating they could make a bulletproof suit :)

      Thank you bluemollusc for this article!