Vintage Native American Jewelry Turquoise Traditions

Native American jewelry is an essential part of the culture and heritage of Native American tribes. The art of making jewelry has been passed down from generation to generation, and it has evolved over time, reflecting the changing styles and tastes of different Native American communities.

The history of Native American jewelry dates back thousands of years. It was initially used as a form of personal adornment, but it also had significant cultural and spiritual significance. For example, certain jewelry pieces, such as headdresses and breastplates, were reserved for use in religious ceremonies and rituals and are generally not appropriate for the retail market.

Native American jewelry is known for its intricate designs, bold colors, and use of natural materials. The materials used to create Native American jewelry vary depending on the region and tribe, but some of the most commonly used materials include turquoise, silver, coral, and shells.

Turquoise is one of the most popular natural stones used in Native American jewelry. It is a vibrant blue-green stone that has been prized for its beauty and spiritual properties for centuries. Turquoise often shows natural veins of black or rust-color, which highlights the natural mineral composition of the stone. Turquoise is often paired with silver, which is another popular material used in Native American jewelry. The silver is typically handcrafted and engraved with intricate designs that reflect the culture and traditions of the tribe.

Coral is another popular material used in Native American jewelry. It is a bright red or pink stone that is often found in the southwestern United States. Coral is believed to have protective and healing properties, and it is often used in jewelry pieces that are worn during ceremonies and rituals.

Shells are also commonly used in Native American jewelry. They are often used to create intricate beadwork designs, and they are also used as pendants and earrings. Shells are highly symbolic in Native American culture, and they are often associated with the ocean and the spirit world.

In addition to their beauty and symbolism, Native American jewelry pieces are also highly collectible. They are often sold at vintage jewelry markets and galleries, and they can command high prices depending on the materials used and the intricacy of the design.

Whether you are looking to add a beautiful piece of jewelry to your collection or want to learn more about the rich history and culture of Native American tribes, Native American jewelry is a wonderful medium for collectors, historians, and artists.

Gem shows in Denver!

by Rebecca Wartell

September of 2022 featured several interesting Gem, mineral and fossil shows in Denver. We checked out two of them and enjoyed learning more about the local crystals and precious gems that form in our local area, as well as fine jewelry and gemstones on the larger international market.

First, we visited the Hardrock Summit at the Colorado Convention Center in Downtown, Denver. This gem show included a lot of fun, interactive exhibits and experts in gold mining, fossil finding, and rock and crystal identification. In addition there was a very large hall dedicated to international fine jewelers and gem traders. On site were also registered gemologists who were offering appraisals and gem identification.

The following weekend, we checked out the Denver Mineral, Fossil, Gem, and Jewelry Show at the National Western Complex. It was HUGE! The show featured many gem, jewelry, and crystal dealers from all over the world. There was a limited amount of fine jewelry, but many jewelry designers. A highlight was the African trade beads, what an amazing collection of glass and ceramic beads in every color of the rainbow.

Here are a few pictures from our gem trade show adventures – we learned a lot and had a great time!

Gem Show Display
Amazonite Display Gems Local to Colorado
Gem Show Display
Gem Show Crystal Show