Turquoise is a very popular semi-precious stone that is used by all jewelry creators and is particularly associated with Navajo jewelry. But the history of using this stone goes back a much longer way: great minds of the world, among which Aristotle or Pliny, mention it in their writings, and there are proofs that Turquoise was used to decorate Egyptian kings’ residences and temples. Furthermore, high priests and royal descendants wore Turquoise jewelry to reflect their status.
Egypt is the place where Turquoise jewelry was first exploited. Ancient civilizations used this beautiful stone to decorate important buildings, but also for personal jewelry objects. However, not everyone could wear these items back then: they were reserved for people with the highest ranks in their society, such as kings and queens, or high priests during the divine service. Sinai, for example, is one of the ancient mines from where royalties got their Turquoise jewelry. Why did they love this stone so much? Because the blue-green color of Turquoise represents transcendence; it represents the sky and, at the same time, the deep seas. This information is essential for understanding why Turquoise was so valued in antiquity, and why it has remained a very popular gemstone to this day.
Turquoise is thus exploited for its beautiful color. One of the best types of Turquoise is found in America, in the south-west region. Native Americans, just as Egyptians before them, used these stones to create all sorts of jewelry. The Navajo tribe, in particularly, developed an entire art around Turquoise jewelry making, art which still continues to fascinate people. Authentic Navajo jewelry is crafted by hand, using techniques passed down from generation to generation. Often, Turquoise is mounted in silver, but other materials can also be used for Turquoise jewelry: copper, gold or organic materials like wood, shells etc. It all depends on the jeweler’s inspiration and also on the color of the Turquoise. Turquoise stones don’t have only one color: its shades vary from vivid sky-blue to dark green, or mixtures between green and blue. Often, yellow or brown strains appear in the stones, but this is exactly what makes Turquoise jewelry so unique.
The value of Turquoise Navajo jewelry is directly proportional to the naturalness of the Turquoise gemstones and their rarity. In general, people prefer clearer stones, but, of course, there are no fixed rules when it comes to personal taste. Because fashion markets are full of cheap imitations today, it’s very important to know from whom to buy Navajo jewelry. Don’t trust all that you see online or what certain suppliers sell under the name of â€˜authentic jewelry’. The only way to be sure you have an authentic masterpiece in your hands is to buy it from an authorized Indian artist. These artists work for whole days and even weeks to create a single jewelry, and they only use quality stones and materials for their creations. Look for Indian artists’ associations online to get detailed information about Navajo jewelry.