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Very Breezy

Rare Vintage Heishi Bird Choker

Rare Vintage Heishi Bird Choker

Regular price $160.00 USD
Regular price Sale price $160.00 USD
Sale Sold out
Shipping calculated at checkout.

Heishi is the oldest form of jewelry in North America. The word itself means shell, but describes a method of crafting that dates back 6000 BCE. It is attributed to the Kewa people, formerly known as the Santo Domingo Indians, one of the Rio Grande Pueblos in Northern New Mexico. Heishi jewelry is created by hand, which seems nearly impossible given the precision required to individually cut, shape, and string each tiny bead, which is composed of organic material such as seashells, turquoise, or coral. This piece features "fetish" beads in the shape of lavender birds; for religious reasons, birds are the only living figure the Kewa people carve into jewelry, and they are said to be a powerful good luck charm. This necklace falls at a flattering length of 17.5", hitting a bit longer than a choker, at the clavicle. It is finished in the back with a gold twist clasp.

This piece and others in this capsule were created by indigenous people in the United States and Mexico using traditional methods. A portion of sales will be donated to NDN Collective, an Indigenous-led organization working on the ground to protect Native land and provide much-needed resources to Indigenous communities in the United States. 

Great vintage condition. With any questions about the specific condition or size, please email for additional photos or measurements, as all sales are final.

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