Steve LaRance

Steve LaRance

Steve LaRance and his wife, Marian Denipah, are award-winning jewelers who work in the Tufa-cast tradition. Many of their wonderful pieces of jewelry are not only beautiful on the outside, but also have designs on the inside. Often, their pieces have symbolic meaning and stories, often relating to traditional Hopi themes such as rain, corn, and sun.  In addition to traditional imagery, they work with traditional stones, turquoise and coral, as well as non-traditional, precious stones such as amethyst, peridot, and topaz.

Tufa-casting is considered to be one of the oldest techniques in Native American jewelry.  The process involves the use of Tufa, a light stone made of compressed volcanic ash.  The designs are hand-carved in the the Tufa mold, and molten silver is then poured into the mold to create the beautiful and unique Tufa-cast jewelry.  Tufa molds commonly produce only a single piece of jewelry before the mold is unusable due to the destructive nature of molten metal.

Steve’s Hopi name is Wikivya with which he signs his pieces of jewelry along with the Sun symbol because he is of the Sun Clan. Wikivya means “Bringing back the Blessings of the successful hunt”.

Denipah is also a painter, and formed a quick bond with painting during high school. When an art teacher asked her to pose for a drawing class, she quickly agreed. When she was posing, however, she noticed that the students in the class seemed to be having a great deal of fun. So, she enrolled in an art class, taking to oil painting immediately. 

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.