Caring for your turquoise

October 7, 2010

A good portion of Native American jewelry is made with sterling silver and turquoise.  It is a stunning combination! Aside from it’s natural radiance and vibrant coloration, turquoise, (also known as Skystone),has special significance for Native American culture.  According to the legend, when the rain came, the Native Americans were so grateful and happy, that they danced in the rain and cried. Combined with the rain, their tears permeated the earth and became turquoise.

Wingz of Power is now selling a beautiful cross set entirely with turquoise in our store www.navajo-turquoise-jewelry.com . This delicate and exceptionally graceful piece was hand-crafted by a skilled Navajo craftsman out of sterling silver and inlaid with King’s Manassa turquoise.

Turquoise is a magnificent stone and requires some maintance as well as do other stones that were made from raw materials from the earth. Natural stones are susceptible to many environmental elements.. They tend need a little extra TLC. To maintain both the color and the quality of your turquoise jewelry and other stones, follow these simple steps-

  • Avoid oils, perspiration, dirt, soaps and chemicals- they can sink in to the stone’s porous surface and discolor the stone.
  • Check the stone’s setting on a regular basis.
  • Jewelry set with turquoise and other stones should be removed during any strenuous activity or any situation in which the stone may be damaged or compromised.
  • When putting on bracelets be sure to find a piece that fits you correctly. Making too many adjustments to the sterling silver will make the metal weak and in the long run possibly cause the stones to fall out.
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Word of the Day: Calumet

September 16, 2010

I love this particular piece by master Navajo artisan Tim Yazzie for its exceptional symbolism.  It combines two very powerful prayer-related ideas into one exquisite pipe.  Firstly, the pipe itself is a symbol – pipes were smoked for a variety of reasons – yes, including peace, although it certainly wasn’t the sole reason.  The drifting smoke was representative of the prayers that were being lifted to the Creator.  Secondly, the pipe is adorned with hand-crafted, sterling silver feathers of remarkable delicacy.  The Navajo tribe considers feathers to be symbolic of the Creative Force as well as prayer.   Feathers are used in prayer sticks (known as Pahos), and as decorations on a variety of items, particularly when arranged in a circular pattern (representative of the sun).  Tribal chiefs also adorned their headdresses with feathers to indicate their communication with the Creator.

A beautiful and spiritual pipe, both inside and out – it is hand-crafted from sterling silver inlaid with sleeping beauty turquoise and decorated with(as I mentioned) four dangling sterling silver feathers.  Check it out on our eBay store – definitely worth a look.

The Wingz are Flying Again!

September 3, 2010

That’s right – Wingz of Power company owner and connoisseur of Native American art Lisa Soens is once again on the road, bringing exquisite pieces from the Navajo, Zuni, and Santo Domingo tribes to you hometown!

She will be in the Kane Country Market in St. Charles, Illinois on both Saturday and Sunday (September 3-4).  Lisa’s hours on Saturday will be from 10 am-5 pm, and on Sunday from 7 am-4 pm.  If you have any questions, she can be reached at psblaao@earthlink.net or by telephone at (202) 256-7476.

Come and view our lovely, authentic Native American pieces, from the most delicate earrings to smudge feather praying wands, and everything in between.  And happy Labor Day!

DESCRIPTION

Sterling Silver Native American Peace Pipe with Sleeping Beauty Turquoise Stones  

INFO

A peace pipe, also called a calumet or medicine pipe, is a ceremonial smoking pipe used by many Native American tribes, traditionally as a token of peace. When I saw this pipe I knew as a collector I had to have it for my store! Crafted by Navajo silversmith Tim Yazzie, it is hand cut, tooled, stamped and polished. Sitting on top are 5 sterling bezels each with 5 Sleeping Beauty mine turquoise stones that were hand cut and polished to matching proportions. On the bottom dangle 4 hand tooled and stamped feathers which add true character to the piece.   Mr. Yazzie even added a true sterling pipe screen on the inside that is cut and soldered together with small screen holes to fit in the pipe perfectly. I suppose one could really use it for a ceremony but the silver would get too hot and this is a collectors piece to be shown off!

Please note: Mr. Yazzie made me two of these pipes, each with slightly different pattern designs so they  can be one of a kind pieces of art.

 ARTISTS NAME

Well known Navajo artist Tim Yazzies work can be found in many fine studios and stores for sale across the Southwest as well as across the USA. His silversmith work is amongst the best and we love carrying his pieces. His hallmark had engraved signature as well as “Sterling” are on the bottom.

 SIZE

This pipe measures 6 ½ inches long and .40 inches wide. The actual cylinder on top is 1.6 inches in length or tall and 1 inch across the top. Each feather dangles 1.6 inches down and is .40 inches wide. Each bezel with stone is .40 in length and .25 inches wide

BRACELET SIZE

If you are not sure of your wrist size for a bracelet, try these steps. Wrap a loose measuring tape or piece of string around the bone area of your wrist from point to point. Where the measuring tape meets together you will see your wrist size. If using a string, lay it flat on a ruler and you will determine your size. It is highly recommended that you buy only the bracelets that will fit your wrists. To stretch a bracelet to fit on your wrist, not only are you putting stress on the silver but also on the stones – so please know your sizes! All of our items are inspected and mailed with stones intact

WEIGHT

1.9 ounces

Soar Ahead!

This new Zuni Fetish Heishe necklace is hand strung on a silver wire with silver hooks on both sides. The heishe beads of genuine Penn Shell as well as turquoise beads are set between 7 fetish pieces. On this necklace is a traditional fish, wolf, badger, eagle, mole fox and rabbit. The fetish figures are hand carved stone or shell that are made of are turquoise, jet, spiny oyster, marble, jasper and quartz. This necklace measures 16 inches.

Native Americans have always felt a special connection to nature. The belief that all things in nature have a spirit is an integral part of their religions, which is part of what makes their creation of fetishes so important to to their cultures. Fetishes are Native American carving of animals, humans or supernatural figurines believed to have inherent power. The most renowned fetish carvers are the Zuni, who call themselves Asiwi (Ah-she-wee), but many Native American tribes create and use fetishes. It is a Zuni belief that animals are more powerful and like their deities than man. They also believe that both practical and spiritual power reside within their fetishes. The Zuni have used fetishes for many purposes: to make game more plentiful, to enable hunters to catch game and to use in curing ceremonies. They may also be used as protection for the community as well as individuals. There are two major groupings of fetishes (and some overlap between them): protective or healing animals, hunting and prey animals. For example, the mountain lion, an animal of both groups, is a source of leadership and resourcefulness. The bear, protective or healing animal, symbolizes strength, introspection, and a spiritual journey though life. The white bear is medicine. The coyote is a hunting animal of laughter, humor and foolishness, the master trickster who tricks himself. Zuni fetishes are totemic and feature inlaid eyes and heart lines, while those of the Navajo are often known as storytellers and are included in fetish necklaces that serves as mnemonics for traditional stories.

As always, this and many other hand-made, breathtaking, authentic items are available at the Wingz of Power site.

Soar ahead!

 

 

 

Navajo Albert Cleveland Sterling Silver & Pilot Mountain Turquoise Hair Barrette

 DESCRIPTION

This Native American design hair barrette starts with a beautiful hand cut and deep notched sterling silver frame. The artist has hand stamped Native designs of the sun, moon and Native stars surrounding the bezel. Within the bezel is a hand cut and polished Pilot Mountain turquoise stone. A traditional silver hair clip is on the back of the frame and is stamped “Made in France”. .

INFO

 Pilot Mountain mine can be found in Esmeralda County, Nevada. This active mine currently produces a large amount of graded turquoise with a variety of colors ranging from blue to green with dark brown, black, or reddish matrices. Deposits here consist primarily of thin seams with some nugget formations.

ARTIST

Albert Cleveland and his wife Jackie are no strangers to those who are familiar with Navajo artists. Their art work and silver designs can be found all over the world and are prized possessions of fine silver collectors and lovers of beautiful native American jewelry. Albert’s hallmark stamp “AC” as well as “Sterling” can be found stamped on the back. Albert and his family live and work in the Gallup Mew Mexico area.

SIZE

This little work of art measures 4.25 inches long and 1 inch wide. The stone itself measures .75 inches long at it’s longest point to point and .5 inches tall at it’s widest point to point. The back clip measures 3.25 inches long.

WEIGHT

1.0 ounces

This and many, many more stunning, authentic Native American pieces are available for purchase at the Wingz of Power online shop.  We look forward to seeing you there.

Soar ahead!

DESCRIPTION 

 This beautiful NEW pot is hand coiled and hand painted from natural colors of the earth. The same design pattern is repeated on all four quandrants. The top rim has a beautiful painted pattern around the rim along with a pressed design knotched within the clay.The bottom of the pot is signed by the artist, Acoma potter E. Antonio.

Many Acoma potters gather their clay, sift it and add water to it from the sacred grounds of the Acoma Pueblo to make their pottery. The potter gathers natural pigments and vegetation from within the grounds to make their paints. The yucca plant is generally used to make their paint brushes, as it has fibers within the plant that are a gift from nature for the use of painting.

INFO

Acoma Pottery

Authentic Acoma pots are made from local, slate-like clays. When traditionally fired, these clays produce a very white vessel. After they are fired, these clays also are strong enough to allow the production of very thin walls. Traditionally, the Acomas use both mineral and vegetal based paints for their designs. The characteristic white backgrounds allow the Acoma potters to produce crisp black images, as well as rich polychrome designs. 

From a design standpoint, the Acoma potters frequently use rainbows, parrots, geometrics, and other historic and prehistoric motifs. Also, they frequently use patterns inspired by prehistoric Mimbres designs. A number of anthropologists believe that the Acoma and Laguna people are remnants of the prehistoric Mimbres people who migrated up from the Silver City, New Mexico area; hence this group’s interest in the Mimbres.

Acoma is often called the “Sky City,” because of its location atop a mesa in Western New Mexico. The people are closely related to the Laguna Pueblo people; they speak the same language and are adjoining neighbors. According to anthropology scholars, both the Acomas and Lagunas have myths that trace their heritage to the Anasazi people of the Four-Corners area and the Mesa Verde region in Colorado.

The Acoma village was already well established by the time of the invasion by Coronado and the “Spanish Entrada,” ca. 1540. The village remained in a backwash of the Spanish “conquest” until it was brutally brought into the Spanish mainstream in 1599. It since has been inexorably tied to the history of the State of New Mexico.

Of some interest to collectors is the effect its location has had upon the pottery styles of the Acomas. We have referenced that the prehistoric Anasazi groups were in the Four-Corners area, to the north of Acoma. To the south were the Mimbres who lived in the mountains above Silver City, NM. Some archaeologists maintain that the two cultures met and mixed in the Acoma area—the Anasazi from the north and the Mimbres from the south. Their reasoning goes that this is the why some of the Acoma pottery picks up the Mimbres designs. Notwithstanding, the modern Acoma potters have certainly added many Mimbres elements to their designs.

ARTIST

Native Acoma potter E. Antonio has signed this piece on the bottom.

SIZE- CONDITION

This pot measures 6 inches across the center and stands 4.75inches tall. The top lip measures 2.50 inches across.

There are no visible cracks or chips on or in this piece.

This pot and all pottery are double wrapped for a safe journey to your destination.

WEIGHT

14.60 ounces

Tribes, Pueblos, NationsAcoma, Cochiti, Isleta, Jemez, Jicarilla Apache Nation, Laguna, Mescalero Apache nation, Nambe, Navajo Nation, Ohkay Owingeh, Picuris, Pojoaque, Sandia, San Felipe, San IIdefonso, Santa Clara, Santo Domingo, Taos, Tesuque, Zia, Zuni

AUTHENTICITY

Certificate of Authenticity – This original piece of Native American art is new unless otherwise listed as vintage or pawn.  It will arrive accompanied by our official Letter of Authenticity which documents the Native American artists name, tribal affiliation, gemstone materials, sterling silver and the price you paid so that it will help you establish and maintain accurate records.    We take the utmost care in shipping it to you and it will arrive cleaned, polished and well packed for safety in a sealed bag wrapped in tissue paper in a gift bag.

This and a variety of other beautiful, authentic items are all available for purchase at the Wingz of Power website.

Soar Ahead!

Navajo Eloise Kee Cast Sterling Silver Baby Spoon

Certificate of Authenticity – This original piece of Native American art is new unless otherwise listed as vintage or pawn.  It will arrive accompanied by our official Letter of Authenticity which documents the Native American artists name, tribal affiliation, gemstone materials, sterling silver and the price you paid so that it will help you establish and maintain accurate records.    We take the utmost care in shipping it to you and it will arrive cleaned, polished and well packed for safety in a sealed bag wrapped in tissue paper in a gift bag.     

 We travel to New Mexico, the Native American jewelry capital of the world, and visit other artists throughout the Southwest 4 to 5 times a year to purchase direct from the traders or the artists themselves.  My mother was born and raised in the West and still lives and works in the Grand Canyon.  The Native Americans have always been a part of our lives and we have always surrounded ourselves with their culture and beautiful works of art.  

All of our items are bought directly from individual artists or from well established, well known wholesalers and traders between Gallup, the reservations, Santa Fe and Albuquerque.  We love to buy directly from the artists so we can support their craft as well as provide them a living for their incredible talents.  It helps to bypass the middleman so we can send money back to our adopted families at the reservation. 

It is against the law to post an item as authentic Native American if it is not.  We do our best to describe each piece by the description, where it came from and the artist. We guarantee you will not find any fake, cheap or imported jewelry on our site.  All of our items are Authentic Native works of art. All of our jewelry contains genuine silver, silver, gold and contains no pot metal, nickel, rhodium, pewter or other precious metal substitutes.  

Soar Ahead!

The items you’ve seen on th Wingz of Power site are even more beautiful when seen in real life.  We’d love to meet you at one of our upcoming shows, so mark your calendar!

Friday and Saturday July 9th and 10th – eBay on location in Chicago Illinois.

Saturday July 17th in Milwaukee Wisconsin – Outdoor Market at First St. & Mineral St.

Saturday & Sunday July 31st& Aug.1st. Kane County Outdoor Market St. Charles Illinois.

Friday – Sunday Aug. 7th-9th Chicago Illinois   Halstead Street Festval Days

Soar Ahead!

Large Vintage Royston Ring, One-of-a-Kind Santo Domingo

DESCRIPTION

 This one of a kind ring has Santo Domingo art written all over it. A classic vintage design used by the Santo Domingo silversmith and it is a reason why collectors of Native American art love pieces like this. Large sterling silver rain drop beads accent the frame and highlight the Royston turquoise stone. I love finding older pieces like this that are not tarnished and wearable. This piece has polished to a fresh shimmering sterling silver and the design is one for the Native American jewelry collectors.

INFO

Royston Turquoise
Royston, also known as Royal Blue, was discovered in 1902, 24 miles northwest of Tonopah. By 1915, over $5,000,000 worth of turquoise was removed from this mine, thought to be the largest producer of a single turquoise mine in America. The Royston mine was an example of a tunnel mine. The host rock, rhyolite, gives Royston its often gold-colored matrix. The Royston district of Nevada is home to three turquoise mines: Bunker Hill, Oscar Wehrend, and Royal Blue, all of which are now exhausted. Royston turquoise is known for its beautiful colors ranging from deep green to rich light blues set off by a heavy brown matrix. The hardest Royston was characterized by a crust of dark to light limonite.

Because Santo Domingo Pueblo is located near the ancient cerriollos turquoise mines, the village people have a distinguished history of making fine jewelry and heishi. The Santo Domingos are still great traders very much like their Mesa Verde and Chaco Canyon ancestors. Many roadside stands with jewelry, pottery and silverwork for sale can be found during a visit to the pueblo. Visitors are welcome to the pueblo, however, the Santo Domingo people are vary adamant about preserving their traditional ways. A cultural center and small museum provide opportunities for visitors to learn more about the pueblo where close to 3400 people live.  There is no admission fee, but donations are appreciated. The pueblo also has a small museum and a gas station of the Santo Domingo exit on I-25 between Santa Fe and Albuquerque. The pueblo is located 25 miles south of Santa Fe.

ARTIST

This piece is stamped with the artists hallmark stamp of “BC” and “Sterling”.

 SIZE

This ring measures a size 10 ½. The frame measures 1.50 inches from top to bottom and 1 inch side to side. The stone measures 1.20 inches from top to bottom and .60 inches from side to side.

WEIGHT

1.0 ounces

As always, this piece, as well as a variety of gorgeous items are all available at www.wingzofpower.net.

Soar ahead!