Pen Shell and Clam Shell Heishi and Turquoise Earrings

Pen Shell and Clam Shell Heishi and Turquoise Earrings

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Kewa Pueblo jeweler, Ramona Bird, made these hand-rolled pen shell and clam shell heishi bead earrings.  Each strand has two turquoise nugget beads.  They are strung on sterling silver cones and hooks.

Size: 2.675" L - includes wires

Hand Rolled Beads Hand-rolled beads are made by chipping out pieces of stone or shell.  A hole is drilled into the center of each chip.  The chips are strung on a wire and rolled, and rolled, and rolled until they are all the same width.  Sometimes they are graduated – a difficult task!  They are then polished until smooth.  There are hand-rolled necklaces from Kewa Pueblo that are over a thousand years old.  In the “old days”, the holes were drilled with a hand-pump drill, strung on handmade string, and rolled on sandstone.   There is nothing quite like hand-rolled Kewa beads!

Many of the Pueblos in New Mexico took on Spanish names after colonization and are now taking back their original names.  Kewa Pueblo is the traditional name of the place and the people.  It was known as Santo Domingo Pueblo for many, many years.