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Southwest American Indian Jewelry in Fashion
Tobias Padilla - Thursday, May 09, 2013
Southwest American Indian Jewelry in Fashion

Native American jewelry has been part of celebrity fashion for a long time. In the 1960's and 1970's celebrities such as Cher and Jim Morrison wore large Squash blossom necklaces and concho belts. Today you will see celebrities like Beyonce and Paris Hilton wearing chunky silver and turquoise, American Indian inspired necklaces, bracelets and rings. World renowned silversmith Harry Morgan created jewelry for actor Val Kilmer for the movie The Doors.  200

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Buying Native American jewelry online
Tobias Padilla - Friday, November 16, 2012
Buying Native American jewelry online

The world of hand made Native American jewelry is huge, and it can be difficult to find that perfect piece of wearable American Indian art, especially when shopping online. It is one thing to be able to walk into a jewelry store in the Southwest, and be able to actually see, feel and try on what you will be buying. It is a different experience to only be able to look at pictures and descriptions of Indian jewerly, and above all else, be able to trust someone you cannot even see.

 

There are some things that can be helpful when looking for authentic Southwest style jewelry online. When you find a store some key things to look at are: how long has the site been in business, do they have an about us page, can you call them directly, do the listings have good pictures and descriptions, do they offer a return policy where you can return it if you are not happy with it, and are the pieces of jewelry on the site stamped with the Native American silversmith's hallmark and sterling.

 

Most Native American artists make thier work in traditional ways and it is all done by hand, a lot of time and effort go into most of these pieces, and that is why the hallmark is important, it lets the consumer know that that particular silversmith is proud of the work he or she has created, and wants the world to know about it. Good online sellers know about the Native American silversmiths they represent as well, and knowing the name gives the consumer a chance to do research on that person. Most good sites also know what kind of turquoise is used in each piece.

 

This is important because there are many different kinds of turquoise such as, Royston, Dry Creek, Cripple Creek, and Aztec just to name a handful. Some turquoise comes from mines that are no longer active, such as #8 Turquoise. Turquoise can also be treated, some things you may want to know are; has it been stablized for added hardness or is it natural. This will dictate the cost of a particular piece.

 

Always do your research before you jump into that $500 bracelet. Ask questions, look up the artist's name, shop around for a better price, and if you do decide to go with a certain seller ask for a better price. These are just a few things one should look at when ready to make an investment in American Indian jewelry.

 

Click to see our great selection.

   

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Authentic Native American jewelry
Tobias Padilla - Friday, November 16, 2012
Authentic Native American jewelry

Authentic Native American jewelry is sometimes hard to find especially since the true classic art form is slowly fading away. Younger generations  are not picking up where the elders left off, and this is making it more possible for people to start making knock off jewelry using plastic beads and nickel silver, to come across as authentic Southwest Indian jewelry. These knock off pieces usually sell for a ridiculously low price, for instance a micro inlay pendant that may take a Navajo silversmith several weeks to make may sell for $200 or more while a foreign made one might sell for $40-60.  200

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Styles of Native American Jewelry
Tobias Padilla - Friday, November 16, 2012
Styles of Native American Jewelry

 Native American jewelry has been around for centuries in different forms and styles, and has evolved with the times. Today American Indian silversmiths create contemporary and traditional styles of Indian jewelry. Traditional style Southwest jewelry is what most connoisseurs are looking for these days. Traditional Indian jewelry has a distinct look to it, including the stamping, the tools, and the shape. Some artists go back generations in jewelry making, and are holding on to the style that their family members started way back. For instance, Jacob D. Morgan is a sixth generation silversmith who carries on in his father, Harry Morgan's footsteps, with a unique style of hand stamp work and a beautiful oxidized look to the silver, which is not highly polished.

 

The silver work can also distinguish Indian jewelry from being contemporary or traditional. The over all shape of a bracelet or a ring will immediately let you know this. Another well-known artist who sticks to traditional form is Sunshine Reeves, he has been a silversmith for over two decades. His stamp work and the shape of his creations scream Navajo old style, he uses only stamps that he has created. On most of these creations the entire piece of silver is covered in deep stamped Navajo designs, he also adds a dark oxidation to the majority of his work to give it the old pawn effect. Some artists keep their work really traditional by using only silver that they have melted down and formed on their own.

 

One form of this is the ingot method in which a silversmith will get sterling silver, melt it down, and pour it into a mold, hammer it out, and cut it into the desired shape (rather than buying pre-made sheets of sterling). Another form is the tufa cast method. This style dates back and involves a stone that the silversmith carves his design into, and then, similar to ingot, will melt the silver and pour it into this carved out cast. The unique thing about this method, is that it leaves a beautiful texture from the cast on the silver, and can only be used once so that each piece of jewelry can never be exactly alike.

 

Another style of American Indian jewelry is the contemporary form. This is a new style that some artists have created and they come up with new ideas that go with the times and the trends of today. Staying true to creating wearable art in the hand made Southwest fashion, but with unique shapes of turquoise and silver. One particular artist known for this is Alex Sanchez, Alex creates his jewelry with beautiful overlay petroglyph designs, but the shape of the silver and turquoise is what makes his art stand out. He places the stones in unusual places, forms the silver in different ways, and is always coming out with something new and different. These are just a few of the different ways Native American silversmiths have continued on the beautiful tradition of wearable art.

Please click to see diffrent styles 

 

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Kelly Morgan
Tobias Padilla - Monday, August 20, 2012
Kelly Morgan

Kelly Morgan is the son of master world renowned award winning silversmith Harry Morgan, he makes his jewelry in the same way his father made jewelry before he passed away. Kelly implements traditional Navajo designs, uses only natural stones of the finest quality, and adds a beautiful oxidation that gives the silver an old pawn look. Kelly is a sixth generation Old-Style Navajo silversmith. Kelly like his brother Jacob makes some of the finest jewelry in Indian country today, Kelly's designs are simple yet absolutely beautiful. We are very happy know Mr. Morgan and to carry his fine jewelry in our store.  200

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Darryl Becenti
Tobias Padilla - Sunday, March 25, 2012
Darryl Becenti

Darryl Becenti is the brother in law to the Sunshine Reeves, and the Andy Cadman clan. He has been creating beautiful jewelry since the 70’s, he learned his trade from David Reeves. His jewelry has some of the best qualities around, just like that of his family, deep hand stamped Navajo designs, Repoussé silver work, and thick gauges of silver. Becenti adds beautiful overlay work to most of his jewelry, sticking the traditional Navajo form. We are very greatful to add his great work to our site.  200

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Darrell Cadman
Tobias Padilla - Sunday, March 25, 2012
Darrell Cadman

Navajo artist Darrell Cadman,  comes from a long line of silversmiths and learned his trade from his brothers Daniel "Sunshine" Reeves, and David Reeves. Darrell Cadman adds his ram hallmark to his jewelry to distinguish it from his brother’s work, who also stamps his work D. Cadman. His jewelry is like that of his brothers, but has it's own unique style that he has created. His work is usually covered in deep well placed Navajo designs. We work with most of Darrell's family, and are very happy to now also carry his beautiful works of wearable Navajo art.  200

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Guy Hoskie
Tobias Padilla - Saturday, February 18, 2012
Guy Hoskie

Guy Hoskie lives in Arizona and has been an amazing silversmith for over eighteen years. He was taught by his relatives, the Cadmans and Reeves. He is well known for his use of fine natural turquoise and heavy stamp work. His work in done in traditional Navajo fashion, Hoskie's works are usually covered end to end in beautiful deep Navajo hand stamped designs(much like that of the Cadmans and Reeves). He adds a dark oxidation to the finished piece to give it the old pawn look. Hoskie makes beautiful easy to wear traditional Navajo jewelry, we are very happy to have met Mr. Hoskie and carry his great art on our site. 200

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Alex Sanchez
Tobias Padilla - Saturday, February 18, 2012
Alex Sanchez

Alex Sanchez has been making jewelry for almost 10 years. He makes beautiful works of art in contemporary and traditional fashion. He is most known for his Petroglyph style that he has been perfecting for some time. His traditional work is fascinating as well, he uses some of the best turquoise in his works and builds the silver around the stones. His Petroglyph works include suns, bears, dragonflies, stars, and many other designs. He overlays these designs on a beautiful textured and oxidized background. Alex is a world class Navajo artist and his works will be very collectable for years to come. We are truly honored to know Mr. Sanchez and to carry his works of wearable art on our site.  200

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Terry Martinez
Tobias Padilla - Tuesday, November 01, 2011
Terry Martinez
Terry Martinez is a world class Navajo silversmith and has been creating jewelry for over 30 years. He uses traditional styles, practices, and techniques to create his works of art. Most of the silver on his pieces is rolled and pounded out with a hammer into the desired shape.

We have been fans of this great silversmith’s work for awhile, and are very fortunate to have finally met him at the 2011 Santa Fe Indian Market. His style is unique, as all his work is hand made, making each and every piece he does one of a kind. He implements the ingot style, this is when the silversmith melts silver and pours it into a mold making either a sheet or a wire, and pounds it with a hammer and or rolls it out into the desired shape. His work includes beautiful hand stamped Navajo designs and dark oxidation.

We are very glad to have made Mr. Martinez’s acquaintance this year, and very proud to start carrying his magnificent jewelry in our store.

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