Mother of Pearl - Knife Handle Material

Mother of Pearl Info


Mother of Pearl, also called Nacre, is a material found on the inside of some Mollusks, which are invertebrate creatures that are enclosed in a shell, such as oysters and nautilus. The reason it is called Mother of Pearl is because it is the substance that makes up Pearls. It is formed by tiny calcium carbonate crystals layered upon themselves, creating it's iridescent appearance.

It is a fairly expensive material, and is very strong, making it ideal for upscale custom knives. It is a favourite of custom knifemakers making high end knives as well as some production companies making dress knives. Mother of Pearl, or MOP as it is sometimes referred to, can be found in many different grades, with large variance in pricing. It is easy to grind and sculpt, yet strong enough to use without fear of breakage.

Certain types of mullusks will develop a darker edge around the outer portions of the shell, which appears a darker hue. This is called Black Lip Mother of Pearl, and is also the same way Black Pearls are produced.

Mother of Pearl Examples