Navajo Yei and Yei-be-chai

“Yei” (pronounced “yay”) is the Navajo name for the benevolent supernatural beings who bring their healing power to medicinal ceremonies still performed today.
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What is the difference between stabilized and natural turquoise?

Turquoise by nature is a relatively soft, porous stone, and it can vary greatly in its quality.   Only rarer high-grade turquoise is actually dense enough that it can be cut and shaped without damaging the stone.  Softer turquoise has to be treated in some way in order for it to be made usable.  Therefore, the majority of turquoise has been enhanced in some way.  The resulting piece of turquoise is then much stronger and easier to cut, polish, and set by a jeweler without risk of breaking.
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The Native American Bola Tie: FAQ

In the late 1800s and early 1900s, scarf slides made out of leather or metal pieces, shells, claws, or animal teeth, were popular attire for both natives and non-natives.   Then in the 1920s and 1930s, American cowboys began wearing scarf slides on their neckerchiefs made by Zuni artists that were carved out of sheep bone and decorated with beadwork, the most common design being a steer-head shape.  From there, scarf slides were crafted out of metal and turquoise by Native Americans, and morphed into the bola tie we know today.
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Clay to Silver: Southwest Indian Seed Pots

Historically, the world has valued containers as both utilitarian and sacred objects.  The Southwest Indians stored their life giving seeds over the winter in clay pots, and the pots had a small hole to keep the seeds safe from vermin.  The seeds came from their three sacred plants: corn, squash, and beans.  At the beginning of the planting season they would need to shatter the clay pot to retrieve the life giving seeds.
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Man in the Maze

The iconic "Man in the Maze" (I'Itoi) symbol is an ancient design originally found on Tohono O’odham baskets. This prehistoric pattern, symbolizing one’s journey through life, also is the seal of the Salt River Pima-Maricopa Indian Community. The legend of the “Man in the Maze” helps children understand the meaning of life.
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Native American Petroglyph Symbols and their Meanings

Many of our artists use a variety of “Petroglyph Symbols” as design themes in their jewelry. Artists such as Myron Panteah, Kee Yazzie, Arland Ben, Lawrence Namoki, and many others have gained widespread popularity creating art with Petroglyph Symbol designs. These symbols have their origin in actual prehistoric petroglyph sites, found throughout the southwest. The symbols found at such petroglyph sites were carved into sandstone walls many hundreds of years ago.
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We Buy Old Jewelry!

We love to purchase quality Southwest jewelry! The majority of our vintage pieces are acquired from private collections and individuals just like you. So if you have Native American jewelry that you no longer wear, let us take it off your hands!
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Turquoise Chart

Here's a fun turquoise chart showing both rough stone and cut and polished cabochons. The turquoise mines are listed next to each stone. It's so fascinating to see the variety of colors that can be produced by different turquoise mines in the Southwest!
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Mokume-gane is a metalworking process where multiple metals are combined under high temperatures to create beautiful patterns in the metal. Mokume-gane, a Japanese word, roughly translates to "wood grain metal" which is a good description for the patterns this process can create.

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Rosarita is a unique material, which derives its exceptionally rich, red color from the process of gold refining. It is a unique by-product of the 1960s and 1970s gold refining processes. Alaskan beach sand was smelted for its gold content and the slag by-product was Rosarita, which is essentially a gold-infused glass.
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Avanyu is the water serpent deity of the Pueblo tribes of Arizona and New Mexico, often depicted on San Ildefonso and Santa Clara Pueblo pottery. The Avanyu symbolizes the importance of water to indigenous desert cultures. This symbol is also associated with lightning as shown by the serpent’s tongue. Avanyu appears on the walls of caves located high above washes and rivers in New Mexico and Arizona...
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About Turquoise

Few things in the Southwest are as iconic as turquoise Native American Indian jewelry. This striking blue gemstone has truly stood the test of time, appearing in American Indian jewelry as early as 1600 CE in Santo Domingo (Kewa) Pueblo and weaving its way through generations of artists, traders, and collectors, and into the hands of modern-day fashionistas.
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