Navajo turquoise jewelry is one of the most popular trends among Native American artwork in the US. It is not simply a new tradition, but has a long history among the Navajo people. Navajo turquoise jewelry has been around for hundreds of years and is both sacred and symbolic to the faith of that tribe. It has also been a symbol of their success, one that has helped them to share their culture and skills.
About Navajo Turquoise Jewelry
The beauty found in the stones of Navajo turquoise jewelry represents good health, good fortune and joy. It could be mistaken as a sort of good luck charm. But Navajo turquoise jewelry has more personal meaning than just that. It is a gift from the spirits and is meant to be a part of enhancing one’s overall persona for better, not only in personal gain but in how you give back too. It’s why for centuries the craft of making Navajo turquoise jewelry has long been passed down and mastered for generations.
In the beginning, Navajo turquoise jewelry was mostly just crafted beads that were put onto a string, often made from leather or a handmade piece of rope. Navajo turquoise jewelry was a sign of wealth and it remained unchanged this way for many years. However, the arrival of the Spaniards in the 16th century changed how Navajo turquoise jewelry was to be made in the future.
Through cultural exchange, the Navajo gained an understanding of silversmithing, which they quickly learned to apply to making Navajo turquoise jewelry. The 19th century saw many silversmiths among the people turn to making Navajo turquoise jewelry to sell in large markets and shops. Navajo turquoise jewelry was considered a good way to make a better living by gaining the interest of outsiders.
The latter half of the 20th century saw a huge increase in the interest of Navajo turquoise jewelry and Native American culture in general. Navajo turquoise jewelry made mostly with silver sold better than it had ever done before. People could afford it and distributors were able to move the product faster so it could reach a much larger group of potential buyers.
The new millennium has seen the popularity of Navajo turquoise jewelry continue to grow. For current Navajo it is a symbol of tribal pride. For others it shows continued history through the passing down of the knowledge of how to make and craft Navajo turquoise jewelry.