Here, inspired by the fibrous composite structure of a squid pen, we introduce hierarchical chitin fibers (herein, termed "Chiber") and their transparent composites and demonstrate the potential of these chitinous functional materials as a sustainable separation-membrane and reinforcing filler for composites. We employ a centrifugal jet-spinning process to fabricate Chiber with aligned chitin nanofibrillar architectures, for which we discuss the processing-morphology relationship. A nonwoven fiber-mat made of Chiber exhibits excellent adsorbing performance for a toxic ionic dye (Congo Red), and has a low coefficient of thermal expansion comparable to that of glass fibers. Finally, we demonstrate a squid pen-mimetic transparent composite using Chiber and investigate its optical property. (c) 2018 Author(s).