The jewelry designs that have become the trademark of the Navajo silversmiths of the world are truly beautiful…. but borrowed. It is believed that the Navajo were introduced to the seductive silver material in their interactions with the Plains Indians. Gifts of sterling silver jewelry trinkets were abundantly bestowed on the native Plains Indian tribes by the French British, and Colonial military forces vying for territorial control of the new frontier. Further, the Navajo adopted the designs and craftsmanship from the Pueblo Indians, the Spaniards, and the Mexicans. From the Anglos came the market. From the Navajo soul came the ability to blend them all in a beautiful experience.
Navajo jewelry emphasizes movement. It is an exploration of form and the artist's desire to express beauty. The Navajo experiences beauty through expression, not through perception of what is deemed to be beautiful. Beauty is experienced, but never possessed. For beauty, and the expression of beauty to be maintained, it needs to be renewed in all aspects of Navajo living -in art, song, dress, and daily living.