Heishi, cut and drilled beads of shell or stone, goes back to prehistoric times, long before the arrival of the Spanish in Pueblo lands.
Some archeologists believe that Kewa stone and shell jewelry may be the oldest form of jewelry in the Southwest.
Nick works together with his wife, Me-Wee, ad both come from families of heishi-making “royalty”.
Nick learned from his parents the celebrated Ray and Mary Rosetta; Me-Wee, Nick’s wife, learned from her grandfather, Tomasito Tenorio.
Even though modern tools, the process continues to demand laborious, time-and material-intensive handwork.
This breathtakingly dainty and beautiful necklace is fabricated of serpentine, with accents of gleaming sterling silver.
Serpentine is often used to carve fetishes, so having a necklace of such small, and perfectly regular beads is a sign of great expertise.
Five strands of these heishi beads are barely as thick as one strand of silver beads.
The result is a necklace of uncommon color, lovely contrast, and exquisite delicacy.
However, you can wear this with sweaters, as well as business wear, and out for the evening, too.
This is an example of heishi excellence, and gorgeous artistry, by artists with long, and important, family ties to the technique.