Lester Abeyta

Lester Abeyta

Lester Abeyta is a talented lapidary artist from the Santo Domingo Pueblo in New Mexico. He follows the traditional techniques of Santo Domingo Pueblo people as he creates his fine stone and shell jewelry. The skillful artist is best known for his beaded necklaces, which consist of several materials including melon shell, clam shell, pipestone, turquoise, apple coral, and other colorful stones and shells that compliment each other. Lester is also known for his colorful and lightweight traditional tab-style earrings.

Lester learned his lapidary skills from his father, Richard, who also learned it from his own father. When Richard started making jewelry, all the beads were made only with traditional tools and natural resources including being hand shaped on sandstone and polished with beeswax and animal hides. Although Lester’s jewelry-making method today has evolved some since his father and grandfather’s time, this old process of jewelry-making still influences Lester in creating genuine and time-honored jewelry.

First, Lester slices the stones and shells for his necklaces, drills the pieces, and then strings them on wire. Lester then meticulously grinds the stone or shell parts to shape them into round beads, and finishes off by polishing the beads. The process is long, but Lester works alongside his father and sister, which he says makes him enjoy the time. He expresses that working together as a family is an important aspect to their culture.

Lester believes jewelry is a form of communication and a link between humans and the earth around us, and thus it is very important to continue creating traditional jewelry. He expresses that each piece of jewelry has its own distinct spirit and life. This uniqueness to each piece can be clearly seen in Lester’s timeless work.

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.