Navajo Petroglyph Design Sterling Silver & Turquoise Squash Blossom Necklace Set - Alex Sanchez - Native American
Handcrafted sterling silver squash blossom necklace and earrings set, featuring turquoise and petroglyph designs. Handcrafted by Alex Sanchez.
Total Necklace Length: 26 1/4" from end to end.
Naja / Center Piece: 3" X 2 1/2"
Side Pieces: 1 3/8" x 7/8"
Largest Stone Size: 3/4" x 1/2"
Earring Sizes: 1" x 3/4"
Weight: 222 g.
Metal: Sterling Silver
Artist: Alex Sanchez
Alex Sanchez is of Navajo and Zuni heritage. He was born in Mexican Springs, NM, and lives there now with his wife and three daughters. Alex has been making jewelry for over ten years. He masterfully combines contemporary and traditional styles.
Alex works in heavy gauge sterling and 14K gold. He chooses his stones carefully and works them into his petroglyph patterns which are appliqued onto the heavy gauge sterling silver. Alex has developed a flair for unique combinations of design and color.
Turquoise is an opaque, blue-to-green mineral that is a hydrated phosphate of copper and aluminium. It is rare and valuable in finer grades and has been prized as a gemstone and ornamental stone for thousands of years owing to its unique hue. Turquoise was among the first gems to be mined, and many historic sites have been depleted, though some are still worked to this day. These are all small-scale operations, often seasonal owing to the limited scope and remoteness of the deposits. Most are worked by hand with little or no mechanization.
The Southwest United States is a significant source of turquoise. Cerrillos, New Mexico is thought to be the location of the oldest mines; prior to the 1920s, the state was the country's largest producer; it is more or less exhausted today. Only one mine in California, located at Apache Canyon, operates at a commercial capacity today.
The pastel shades of turquoise have endeared it to many great cultures of antiquity: it has adorned the rulers of Ancient Egypt, the Aztecs (and possibly other Pre-Columbian Mesoamericans), Persia, Mesopotamia, the Indus Valley, and to some extent in ancient China since at least the Shang Dynasty.
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