Navajo Frank Yellowhorse Channel Inlay Cuff Bracelet Turquoise Spiny Oyster, American Indian

Sorry, this item has sold.

Originally $1,200, marked down to $900, now 30% off!

This vintage channel inlay bracelet was made by a man who became an icon in the Southwest, Navajo artist and businessman Frank Yellowhorse (1933-2020). Yellowhorse was a Korean War veteran, silversmith, and owner of the famed Chief Yellowhorse Trading Post on Route 66 in Lupton, Arizona. If you ever took a road trip on Route 66 (later I-40) crossing from New Mexico to Arizona, you may have noticed tucked into the base of red cliffs at the border yellow and red signs announcing "Buffalo, Elk, and Deer Jerky." That's how you knew you had arrived at the best stop on the trip. Although the trading post started in the 1950s, Frank and his brother learned to sell as kids, at their parents' roadside stand offering Navajo rugs and petrified wood. Today if you google "Frank Yellowhorse," chances are you will see a photo of him in traditional Navajo attire, including headband and gray hair in a ponytail bun, and you might even find a portrait of him painted by a fine artist who was smitten when stopping in at the trading post. And most likely you will see his name frequently mentioned in reference to having taught his award-winning son Alvin how to make jewelry. Alvin is a multiple blue-ribbon winner at Santa Fe Indian Market and is represented by major art galleries worldwide; Alvin's pieces regularly sell for upwards of $9000! Indeed, Alvin had an amazing teacher in father Frank, who was a renowned artist in his own right. While his jewelry doesn't command quite at the same prices as son Alvin, the elder Yellowhorse's works are highly collectible nonetheless.

This bracelet is a classic example of Frank Yellowhorse's work. The foundation is thick with a simple design carved into the sides, and the colors are stunning together. We see green webbed with black, creamy blue, marbled purple, striated orange, and a flash of red. Black slivers separate stones and shells and create a color block effect. Yellowhorse used high-grade turquoise; the green is spiderweb, and the creamy blue is Sleeping Beauty. Channel inlay is an exacting process, the stones and shells cut precisely to fit together like a puzzle. The result is a beautiful mosaic of geometric shapes, and the black outlines create graphic pop, appropriate for men or women.

The cuff size is just under 1" wide, and taking a soft tape measure around the interior, it is 5-7/8" with a 1-1/4" gap--for a total of 7-1/8" around. But since it is designed to be wider than it is tall, it actually fits a larger sized wrist, and I would estimate it to be perfect for one that is 7-1/4" to 7-3/8". Weighs 59g. The bracelet is circa 1970s and does have some wear, such as small scratches in the silver. But these do not take away from the fact that it is a stunning piece, especially with other bracelets or when worn alone.

A piece of art made by a master artist.


Please convo with questions, or call (505) 369-6865. Will return your call as soon as possible.


For More Native American Bracelets and Watches:
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