Tina Tenorio

  • Jeweler
  • From Santo Domingo Pueblo
  • Creates Multi-trand Heishi Jewelry

Tina Tenorio has been creating traditional Santo Domingo jewelry for over 10 years, concentrating on retail shows instead of being online and in stores. Tenorio's customers usually have to seek her out in person, or have the good luck to chance upon her selling her work. Shumakolowa is the only online source for her sought-after jewelry.

“My parents are the reason I make jewelry today. I remember growing up and coming home to help them drill turquoise from scratch. My dad would slice and cut the stones, and me and my two brothers would sit around the table and drill ‘til it was time to eat dinner. On weekends my parents would wake us up to start on drilling, stringing them on wire, and then on regular string. My parents always made sure we knew how important it was to learn how to make jewelry, especially to learn what they learned from their parents, and to learn a second trade.

The only instruction we got was watching them every day make the jewelry they made, and still do to this day. Both my parents are 81 years old, and are still making the jewelry they showed us how to make 50 years ago.

I make my own jewelry that is different from what my parents make. I do all my own drilling of nuggets and heishi." — Tina Tenorio