Naja is 3" x 3" with a 1" center drop.
Post dangle earrings are 1 1/2" long including the post ball.
size 6 1/4 and is 1 1/4" tall.
mm sterling silver bench beads strung on foxtail with hook and loop clasp.
Paula says - "This rare set came to us with some written provenance. The sticker on the back of the necklace states the mine and weight of these unique stones: CERRILLOS APPROX 140 CT (see photo)".
"A letter with the item from the original owner states, 'The set came from Robert White and Mr. Montoya at Sunwest Silver Co. in Albuquerque. The MB in a stylized form (which is Mary Becenti's hallmark). We purchased these items in the early to mid 1970's.' "
"Robert White, whom is referred to, is now deceased but Ernie Montoya is still the owner of Sunwest Silver in Albuquerque. N.M.".
The color of Cerrillos turquoise is often referred to as olive green and chocolate.
squash blossoms 1 3/8" long. All stones set in smooth bezels.
Bracelet is 1 1/8" tall at front, 1/4" at ends
Bracelet size 6 1/2" inside circumference including 1 1/4" gap.
Squash Blossom Symbolism
Corn, squash and beans are the traditional mainstays of the southwestern diet, culture and symbolism and are used in many ways in art and ceremony. The squash blossom represents abundant life.
What is a squash blossom necklace?
"Some say the Navajo squash blossom necklace has a connection to southwestern agriculture, other say the the spread petal design is just that, a design, and that is was only after white man asked, “what is this, what does it mean” did the name squash blossom come to be. Yet others say the Navajo copied a similar Spanish design of the pomegranate – look at the end of a pomegranate sometime and compare it to the “squash blossom” bead.
"The Navajo word for the “squash blossom” bead means “bead that spreads out” so it would seem to me that the original intent was design, not squash. But what do I know, I wasn’t around in 1880 when spread beads first appeared.
"Whichever is the true account, it seems that originally Navajo silversmiths used simple silver bead necklaces to suspend their naja pendants. In about 1880, the tri-petal form that we know as a squash blossom bead appeared.
"At first, tri-petal silver beads were simply interspersed with plain beads in a naja necklace. Then stones began to be added to the blossom beads partly to please the maker but mostly to satisfy customer demand.
"While usually associated with Navajo silversmiths, squash blossom necklaces are also made and worn by Pueblo and Zuni people. Zuni necklaces usually feature needlepoint designs. Although there can be any number of squash blossoms on each side of a necklace, there are often six on each side, making twelve squash blossoms and one central naja.
"Full size squash blossom necklaces are often quite large and heavy and most suitable for occasional ceremonial wear. Smaller, lighter versions are made to be worn as everyday jewelry." - Paula
What is a Naja?
horseshoe shaped naja originated with the Moors in Spain. It is a good luck charm
to ward off the evil eye. It was often used on the browband of Moorish Horses.
It is thought that it came to Mexico via the Spanish Moors and from there was
adopted by the Navajo Indians. The naja is the base pendant of many ornate squash
blossom necklaces: read
more . . .
What is Foxtail?
Foxtail chain is a fine, strong chain made with two rows of oval links arranged at 45° to one another and connected by small flat links running down the chain’s centre. This creates a braided or woven effect with a directional grain and a fullness which gives the appearance of the hairs on a fox’s tail. Foxtail withstands the constant friction of beads moving around without fraying, breaking or stretching out of shape and is often used for stringing large or heavy beads that could cut or damage cord or string.
ABOUT CERRILLOS TURQUOISE
The Cerrillos Hills Mining District, just south of Santa Fe, New Mexico, encompasses many mines, the two largest being Mount Chalchihuitl and Turquoise Hill. Mount Chalchihuitl was mined for turquoise by Native Americans as early as 900 A.D. and is the site of the largest single deposit of turquoise ever found in North America. Cerrillos turquoise varies in color from sky blue to blue greens to pure green. Stones often contain streaks of limonite and bright specks of pyrite.
NOTE: Items in our Vintage Shop are either USED or NEW. They might come from inheritances, estate sales, private collections, and store liquidations. Many items are brand new (NOS, New Old Stock) and in perfect condition while others may show tarnish, scratches and other signs of use. Major issues will be described in detail and shown in photos. Vintage Shop items are sold as described and are not returnable.
LLC - Definitions of Jewelry Age and Condition
|A dark or colored film of oxidation that forms naturally on metal exposure to air and other elements. It is often valued for its aesthetically pleasing appearance.|
|30 years or older.|
|New Old Stock. Retail store inventory from at least 10 years ago.|
|An item that has been used.|