This sterling silver bead and Dry Creek turquoise necklace, from Navajo silversmiths of the Southwest, is a timeless work of wearable art. This style of silver bead, often called Navajo Pearls, is an iconic jewelry silhouette beloved by Navajo silversmiths, and is remarkable for the quality of its craftsmanship. With its bold silhouette, satiny antiqued finish and beautiful pale blue hues, this necklace creates an elegant sophisticated statement and is a must-have for collectors of Native American jewelry.
- Necklace handcrafted by Navajo artists of the Southwest
- Sterling silver
- Dry Creek turquoise
- Navajo pearls
- Hook and eye closure
- Necklace measures 18” long x 1/2” wide
- Comes with a signed Certificate of Authenticity
Handcrafted works of Native American art require special care. For more information about proper care and cleaning, please read our Care Guide.
This sterling silver and Dry Creek turquoise bead necklace was handcrafted by skilled Native American artists. Known around the world for their brilliance as silversmiths, Native American artists of the Southwest make jewelry that is collected and admired for its superior craftsmanship, technical sophistication, detail and beauty. Navajo and Zuni artists were the first to learn the art and develop their own distinctive silver jewelry styles, but today talented artists are working in an impressive range of styles in every Pueblo and tribe of the Southwest.
Dry Creek Turquoise is an extremely high quality turquoise with an unusual hue that comes from the Godber-Burnham mine near Battle Mountain, Nevada. Sometimes called Sacred Buffalo Turquoise, Dry Creek gems are characterized by their pale creamy blue color and distinctive chocolate veining. This light blue color is not one traditionally associated with turquoise, and the rarity and uniqueness of these gems have gained Dry Creek Turquoise a devoted following. First discovered in the 1990s by the Shoshone Indian tribe, Dry Creek is now most used by Navajo artisans in their handcrafted sterling silver jewelry. With its extremely high quality and lovely hue, Dry Creek Turquoise has become an extremely prized and valuable gemstone for turquoise and jewelry collectors.
Jewelry has been made and worn in the Southwest since prehistoric times. For thousands of years Native Southwestern people have made mosaic inlay and beads of turquoise, shell, bone or stone. Metal arrived with the Spanish. Native Americans acquired metal ornaments through trade, but it was not until the middle of the 19th century that Navajo and Zuni artisans learned the craft from Mexican blacksmiths and silversmiths. Their early silver jewelry creations were plain, with simple engraved, stamped or punched designs. Turquoise was first used in silver around 1880. By the turn of the century, silversmithing was widespread in the Southwest, and Native artists were making more sophisticated pieces like concho belts and squash blossom and naja necklaces. The Navajo soon became known for their use of silver, emphasizing silver-heavy designs with only a few gemstones, while the Zuni focused on stone work, featuring finely cut clusters of gems in complex patterns. The Hopi and Pueblo tribes also developed distinctive jewelry styles in the early 1900s. Today, silver jewelry is an iconic image of the Southwest.Read our Native American Jewelry Collector's Guide.
At Shumakolowa Native Arts, we guarantee that your purchase is an original and authentic work handcrafted by Native American artists as defined by the Indian Arts and Crafts Act of 1990. We ask our artists to complete an extensive certification process, and to provide a CIB (Certificate of Degree of Indian Blood) card and other documentation of their Native American heritage. Our team of experts carefully inspects every product to guarantee it is handcrafted using traditional, sustainable processes and natural materials of only the highest quality. We record the place and date of each purchase and pride ourselves in paying a fair price that allows artists to make a living practicing their craft. Every work of handcrafted art comes with a Certificate of Authenticity signed by an artist or buyer. At a time when many commercially-made products are being sold as handcrafted Native American art, our in-depth purchase process allows us to guarantee the authenticity of every unique piece of fine art we offer. For more than 35 years, we have made it a priority to visit artists in their studio or home to purchase their latest handcrafted pieces and learn about their work. We have developed lasting relationships with artists, as well as dealers and collectors, and we take pride in being a trusted destination for fine Native American art.