The Squash Blossom Necklace

The Squash Blossom Necklace

There is perhaps no art form more synonymous with Southwest Native American jewelry than the Squash Blossom Necklace.  The history of this iconic necklace is a fascinating tale of the fusion of cultures and an enduring fashion statement across generations.

Hopi Tribe - The Peaceful Ones

The Hopi Reservation is located in Northeastern Arizona on 2,500 square miles in the middle of the Navajo Reservation. The Hopi Tribe currently has less than 20,000 enrolled members, a tiny tribe compared to the Navajo Reservation surrounding them. The name “Hopi” is a shortened version of the longer name they call themselves, Hopituh Shi-nu-mu, which means “The Peaceful Ones”. 

The Fascinating History of Navajo Rugs: Exploring the different periods of Navajo Weavings

From the inception of Navajo weaving around 1700, weaving has provided an important economic benefit to the Navajo tribe and a fine outlet for their artistic talents. Today, Navajo rugs are made in the weaver's home or hogan on vertical looms using the same methods they have mastered for over three hundred years. 

Germantown Weavings (1875 - 1900) An Explosion of Color in the Late 19th Century

Beginning in 1870 to 1875, the Navajo weavers began to have access to commercially spun and dyed wool yarns. The earliest were often three ply yarns, which is one method of dating older weavings. After 1875 the yarns were mostly 4 ply and provided by the early traders to some of their better weavers. The majority of these commercial wool yarns were produced at the mills at Germantown, Pennsylvania.

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.

A History of Navajo Concha Belts

The basic form of the concha (shell) was derived from hair ornaments of the Southern Plains Indians, called hair plates. Hair plates were usually round, undecorated, and with smooth edges. They were strung vertically on red trade cloth, horse hair, or leather. Men would wear this stripe of adornment in their hair and women would wear them as belts, sometimes reaching six feet long. They were made from German Silver, Copper, and Brass.