Mary Lovato

Mary Lovato

Since time memorial, the Santa Domingo Pueblo has traded seashells from the gulf of California and the Pacific over regular trade routes. Pendants cut from these glossy shells in various forms were overlaid with designs in abalone, jet, and turquoise.

Mary Coriz Lovato, daughter of Santiago Leo Coriz, was born to the Corn Clan in 1936. She is the third generation from the pueblo of Santa Domingo. In addition to raising five children, she has become an accomplished artist.

Mary Lovato is known for her unique mosaic inlay, shellwork, cast, and stamp-work jewelry. Her forte is inlaid shell earrings and pendants. These lovely pieces are a blend of the contemporary and traditional styles, but Mary strives to maintain tradition above all. “My mother and mostly my father were my teachers. I was brought up very traditional,” she recalls.

“We have kept traditional jewelry going here because it is worn for our dances,” says Mary, who lives at her Santo Domingo Pueblo home outside of Albuquerque.  Although Mary reintroduced stone-in-shell mosaics during the 1950s, Santo Domingans have crafted turquoise and shell heishi beads for at least a thousand years. “I came up with the shell mosaic work myself. I started in the late ‘50s, in black, white and orange.” Mary then began to add more contemporary touches, such as putting in silver to her work and adding more colors. The slivers of turquoise, pipestone, serpentine, coral, and mother of pearl, reflect the colors of the sun’s glow.

Making jewelry has become a part of Mary Lovato’s soul. “[While making a piece] I’m praying for everybody-not for myself, but for the whole universe. I talk to my jewelry when I make it. I don’t just make them to make them. After it’s done, I say, ‘Whoever it may go to, may they have strength, may they have a good, happy life.’ So that is the way I do my work.”

Mary Lovato’s work is so phenomenal that many say it has become a standard by which shell inlaid jewelry is measured.

Her sons, Anthony Lovato and Isaac Coriz, her daughter Mary Francis Coriz, as well as her grandsons, Joel Pajarito and Cordell Pajarito, are all accomplished jewelry makers.

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.