by Sheena Sood
Specimen Jewelry was born after Carrie Yee, a denim designer by day, found a coyote carcass in the woods of West Jersey. She kept the completely intact skeleton in its entirety, cleaned and bleached the bones and later made earrings out of some of the ribs. This led to more ideas about seeing the unconventional as precious and thus Specimen Jewelry was born.
Carrie is inspired by nature, anthropology and is fascinated with the way native tribes adorn their bodies with products of nature that weren't consumed—something we seem to have lost touch with in modern society. "Maybe this is my sub-conscious attempt at re-connecting with this," she says, "and letting others experience a link to this as well." She is constantly sourcing materials and researching natural phenomena, and wishes she could raid the Natural History Museum. Carrie loves, "the unlikely combo of something organic with something shiny and modern," and many of her pieces make use of long dramatic feathers paired with a shiny metallic element, or combine bones, wood, beads and metal.