Housing the most colourful species of abalone, paua shells are unique to New Zealand. Living on the rocky shoreline all around the coast, paua (large edible sea snails) grow best in the waters of southern New Zealand. It has been claimed that there are no other shells in the world that have the colour of the paua shell, varying from translucent greens and pinks to purples and blues, with some shells even boasting gold or crimson tones. More remarkably, the colour in the paua shell changes when viewed from different angles. Inevitably, it is this that makes the paua shell so special when it comes to using it for jewellery. As one of nature’s marvels, it is no surprise that the paua shell is intrinsically embedded in New Zealand culture.