Native American jewelry is an art, and sometimes an investment. but the very best pieces always come from the heart­ — and are always in fashion.

 

"The culture and lifestyle of Native American artisans is woven into the history and techniques used to create their art. They re-create and honor their environment in their jewelry designs through storytelling and the artisan’s vision of life. And in turn, they mentor the coming generation, passing on the skills of their trade to keep their art alive."

— Doris Green, Lantern Dancer

 

"Native American artisans are truly heart-driven when creating their work. Their jewelry is often about telling a story with a deeper meaning, whether it be the use of the materials or the design itself. The artisans, like my father, Ben Nighthorse Campbell (Northern Cheyenne), typically take their inspiration from the spiritual world and give credit to the spiritual world versus taking it themselves. It’s a very humble way of approaching making art and something I have a great deal of respect for."

— Shanan Campbell Wells, Sorrel Sky Gallery

 

Squash blossom necklace by Leon Martinez (Navajo), $27,5000; Concho belt by Thomas Cayatineto, $1,900.

"What the Navajo, Zuni, and Hopi artists make with their hands creates the energy of the Four Corners."

— Jason Arceneaux, Perry Null Trading Company

 

Cuffs, left to right: Aaron Anderson (Navajo), $1,800; Larry Martinez Chavez (Navajo), $3,750; Alice Lister (Navajo), $1,900; Anthony Bedonie (Navajo), $1,450.

"For a thousand years, Native American jewelry has remained in vogue. Adornments of turquoise, shell, and semiprecious stones continue to be interpreted by Native artisans of the Southwest in ways that continuously attract new admirers. Vintage squash blossom necklaces dating from the 1920s to the ’70s are the latest resurgence in  style. Omnipresent during the counter-culture revolution, naja pendants, silver beads, and turquoise were the jewelry of choice for baby boomers. The Millennial Generation has now re-appropriated Native jewelry as their fashion statement. Indian jewelry won’t ever go out of style — one only has to wait to see the spin it takes in its ever-evolving popularity."

— Dr. Mark Sublette, Medicine Man Gallery

 

Vintage Navajo Squash blossom necklace, $2,500.

"From squash blossoms to concho belts, Native American jewelry is not only highly collectible, but symbolic and meaningful. Combining the elements of deep blue turquoise and glimmering silver symbolizes the beautiful western skies of the American Southwest."

— Connie Miller, Cimarron River Company

From the February/March 2015 issue.

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