An inlay refers to the process of cutting and polishing turquoise, shell, and other traditional stones before combining them into patterns and embedding them with metal. Southwestern Native American artists are especially recognized for their skills in inlay jewelry. There are several different techniques used in inlay design:
A "mosaic" inlay is when the stones are laid in the metal touching one another and are flush with the surface of the jewelry.
"Cobblestone" refers to the stones being uneven in height and size with beveled edges - closely resembling a cobblestone street.
Commonly seen, "channel" inlay indicates the use of metal spacers between the stone.
"Corn Row" inlay closely mimics the appearance of this harvested crop - neatly arranged parallel rows of stone with slightly rounded edges.
A staple addition to your Southwest fashion collection, Carico Lake Turquoise is also a collectible North American Turquoise with an astonishing color palette. Ranging from highly unique electric greens to sky blue; from teal to mossy, earthy greens. And rarely, a nugget with both earth and sky color. The highest grade Carico Lake Turquoise is gem-quality American turquoise. Originally known as Stone Cabin, and then Aurora #8, Carico Lake Turquoise has a colorful history for a dried-up lakebed in a remote part of Lander County. The mine has come to rest with the owner of Sunwest Silver Company, Ernest Montoya.
Found near Globe, Arizona, Sleeping Beauty Turquoise is easily one of the most recognizable North American turquoises. Due to its lack of matrix and brilliant, varying shades of blue Sleeping Beauty Turquoise is highly sought after. Sadly, the Sleeping Beauty mine closed in 2012 - causing both prices and demand to climb.
Onyx has long been used for carving and jewelry and is a favored stone often seen in Native American inlay work, or as cabochons or beads.
Native American jewelry artists used coral in a variety of ways. Featured in inlay work, set in rough and natural forms, carved, cut into stunning cabochons, set with diamonds, turquoise, pearls, and almost any combination of the favorite Southwest gemstones. A favorite organic gemstones, red and pink coral are used extensively in Southwest jewelry styles. Red, pink and orange colors can all be found in contemporary and vintage Native American handmade jewelry. Always a great way to add a splash of color to your ensemble.
Authentic Handmade Native American Jewelry
Shop the Santa Fe Style Collection for striking contemporary jewelry, handcrafted by artisans who draw on the rich history of the Southwest.
This collection features trending artists popular in the Four Corners and loved by locals here in New Mexico. The jewelry featured here is a fusion of traditional techniques, passed hand-to-hand across generations, and modern artistry.