An award-winning Navajo artist, now around 70 years old, she has been silversmithing since she was 14 years old. She learned from her father, who is a fourth-generation silversmith. Her family was among the first to use sand casting, and Frances combines this technique with her favorite “track” styles for which she is known today. When not making jewelry, Francis is raising her grandchildren, and still tends her sheep daily.
Very confusingly, her name is spelled both “Frances” and “Francis” in various books and websites. There may be another jeweler, names Francis Jones, who does stone inlay jewelry, very different from Frances’. Her signature stamp, is F J. Some of her work is being fabricated by her son George, nowadays, but he marks those pieces with his mother’s mark since she created the designs.
Frances is included in a book by the well-known author and expert in Native jewelry, Mark Bahti, about unsung but highly regarded artists. Her style has evolved to contemporary elegance.