Thursday, October 27, 2016

A piece that deserves a closer look...

Once in a while, we find an item that we think is special in some way, and would be interesting to deconstruct. (We won't literally take it apart, so don't worry.) This time, the subject is B GD/20, a Navajo silver and turquoise bracelet from circa 1920.

The style with two tri-wires on either ide of a twisted square wire is not uncommon, and was one of the favored styles of that particular time. However, not many of these bracelets have the very cool details found on this one.

First off, note the plate under the turquoise. It is thick hand-pounded silver, rather than machine-milled commercial sheet. The irregularities of the edges mark it as pounded ingot, which is generally earlier and far ore desirable from a collector's standpoint than sheet silver.

Next, note the wear on the inside of the bracelet. The twisted square wire shows the type of wear consistent with years of use and skin contact, which is exactly what would be expected from an old piece.

Finally, the terminal ends are finished with a thick rectangular piece of silver instead of a thin piece--again, ingot silver rather than sheet silver.

There is more to be said about this wonderful bracelet--to hear the full story, give us a call or drop us an email. (480) 423-8777 and

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Where we'll be and why we'll be there

One of the hardest things about the business of selling antique American Indian items is figuring out how to put yourself in front of your customers. A website is a wonderful tool, but nothing beats the personal contact you get at shows and other live venues. Photos can give a good idea of what a certain piece has to offer, but you can't beat the touch and feel of a fine object. That is why we have always tried to travel to see our customers whenever and wherever possible, which has been one of the cornerstones of our business. The next year will have us following an especially ambitious travel schedule, with some new and exciting shows and events.

There are a plethora of antique and Native American shows we could do, enough to keep us busy every weekend if we so chose. But we try to be careful with the shows and events at which we exhibit, as this list of events points out.

November 4th--The St. Louis Indian and Western Art Show. A smaller show, more low-key than many, but probably the only good venue for Indian material in the Midwest.

November 11-12--Special Trunk Show in New York City. The Big Apple has always been a good market for us, and we were regular exhibitors at the Pier Show, which unfortunately died an untimely death. There are other suitable shows in the City, but none that fit well into our schedule, so we will be doing a trunk show on our own at the Skyline Hotel on 10th Avenue at 49th Street.

January 21-22--The High Noon Show in Mesa, Arizona. The best Western show in the country, with a lot of very fine Indian material as well. And since we lived in the Phoenix area for so long, it is always nice to see old friends.

February 17-19--The Marin Show in San Rafael, California. One of the longest-running Indian shows in the country, and a good place to see West Coast clients and friends.

February 28-March 5--Special Trunk Show at Bishop Gallery in Scottsdale during Heard Market. Those of you who have not been to Heard Market, which is basically like Santa Fe Indian Market in miniature, are missing a treat. And the Bishop Gallery, where we set up during that time, is one of the oldest and most interesting galleries in town, with a particular specialty in the work of Fritz Scholder.