Southwest Series

I’ve always been drawn to turquoise and the arts and crafts of American Indians. I finally traveled to the Southwest and saw first hand the beauty and magnitude of the natural environment that so inspired these peoples.

Much of my trip was spent enjoying both the natural and man-made aspects of the various indigenous cultures in New Mexico. During my trip I sought distinctive Native American beads and natural stones that represented the spirit of the Southwest, in hopes of incorporating them into my designs. Upon returning home from Albuquerque, Santa Fe, and Taos, I launched into a beading frenzy that resulted in 30 newly completed necklaces, many of which echo the Southwest spirit.

Some interesting facts about Southwest Indian jewelry.

The numbers four (4), six (6) , and eight (8) have special significance. Four correlates to the four main directions; north, east, south, and west. Six represents the four main directions, plus two more elements; upwards and downwards. The number eight adds two more directions; internal and external. American Indian arts often utilize the numbers four, six and eight as representations of the different aspects of nature. Thus you'll see 4, 6, or 8 strands or items on pieces of jewelry. This is opposed to Western culture that stresses the use of odd numbers 1, 3, 5, 7, 9, achieve balance at an unconscious level.

Zuni fetishes, small carvings of animals and other objects, are infused with special energy in native ceremonies. In my Southwest series, I utilized carvings of animals, but since they were not purchased from a Zuni craftsperson, they are just carvings, as opposed to fetishes. I no longer use the term "fetish," when referring to these small jewelry components, out of respect for the American Indian artisans.

Ancient Symbols
Ancient Details

Ancient Symbols


Components: Faceted Carnelian, Etched Red Agate, Cobalt Glass Beads, Sterling Silver Toggle Clasp and Earwires.

Size: 19.25 in, 49.0 cm
Weight: Necklace-Heavy, Earrings-Medium

Navaho Nature
Navaho Nature Detail
Navaho Nature Detail

Navaho Nature


Components: Large Red Bamboo Coral Heishi, Turquoise Heishi, Sterling Silver Beads, Toggle Clasp and Earwires.

Size: 24.0 in
Weight: Necklace-Heavy, Earrings-Light


Simply Turquoise


Components: Turquoise Heishi, Pen Shell Heishi, Sterling Silver Cones, Clasp and Earwires.

Size: 27.75 in
Weight: Heavy