Leon Martinez

Leon Martinez

Navajo artist Leon Martinez says he was influenced by his parents, Leo and Edith Martinez, to become a jewelry artist as early as 1970. “At the age of nine, I was assisting my parents with buffering, solder, and setting stones,” recalls Leon. He also helped his parents make squash blossom necklaces, rings, and bracelets during the high demand for Indian Jewelry in the 1970s. Making jewelry soon became a passion for Leon and his talent grew enormously. “I was a self starter artist using nature from plants, flowers, rocks, and landscapes for designs and structures. I use everything that’s in my environment, even clouds. Everything God has made. The designs are used for bracelets, rings, conchos, bolos, and earrings. I do my art work for competition, and the jewelry gives me unlimited joy,” says Leon.

In addition to his parents, Leon considers many people and artists his teachers and influences, including Calvin Martinez, Kirk Smith, Sunshine Daniel Reeves, Ernest Begay, Tommy Jackson, and Tommy Singer.

Leon’s jewelry is described as early 1900s old style mixed with contemporary style. “In making designs, even making one piece has made me to become patient, putting quality time into the smallest item. This helps me to perfect my work - soldering, setting stones by size, measurement for perfect fitting, and selection of stones for each piece of work. I try to make each piece of jewelry close to its perfection,” says Leon.

Leon has won several first place awards at the Navajo Nation Fair and Gallup Intertribal Ceremonial, known as the largest fair and annual event.

Sizing

Although the best way to test the size and fit of a piece of jewelry is to try it on in the store, we know that is not always an option. In an effort to help you choose the piece that is right for you, we have included measurements of each piece on the website. Here is how our measurements are defined:

Bracelets

Finding the right size bracelet for your wrist has always been a tricky endeavor, since, unlike rings, there isn't a standardized, universal sizing chart for wrist size. One reason for this is that we all have different shaped wrists, some of us have round wrists, while others have more oval. Bracelets, like wrists, also have different shapes.

So, while bracelet sizing will never be an exact science, we've done what we can to ensure the greatest chance of a comfortable fit. The best thing you can do if you don't know your wrist size is to take a soft measuring tape and loosely measure the circumference of your wrist at the point you plan on wearing it. Try not to have the measuring tape dig into your skin, as this will result in a smaller than ideal size. Once you have the circumference of your wrist, compare it to the chart below to find the correct bracelet size. If your wrist measures in-between two sizes, we recommend rounding up to the larger size. (ie: if your wrist measures 6.375"- you should shop for size "Medium" bracelets.)

 Wrist Circumference

Corresponding Bracelet Size

5.5"

XX-Small

5.75"

Extra-Small

6"

Small

6.25"

Small-Medium

6.5"

Medium

6.75" - 7"

Medium-Large

7.25"

Large

7.5"

Extra-Large

7.75"

XX-Large

8"

XXX-Large

 

You may want to drill down further on the bracelet sizing to make sure the cuff is a comfortable fit. You will notice on our website that we generally list four measurements for bracelets:

Keep in mind that certain bracelets can be adjusted slightly to fit your wrist, but those with inlay or stones all the way around will be damaged if bent. In any case, it is always best to check with with us to see if a particular bracelet is adjustable.

Lastly, have no fear! If you order a bracelet that doesn't fit, send it back for one that does! We want this to be a positive experience, you should never wear something that isn't 100% comfortable. More on our return policy here.

Buckles

Sizing belt buckles is pretty straightforward. The height and width are self-explanatory, and the belt width describes the maximum belt width the buckle will fit on.

Concha Belts

We try to include the height and width for the conchas, as well as the buckle (if different), and the width of the belt they are on. The length of the concha belts can be less important, because these belts are often made quite long to accommodate many waist sizes, and then can be shortened to fit the wearer. If you are concerned whether or not a belt will fit you, just ask. We are happy to size most of our concha belts before shipping.