Holy Grail: Zuni Fetish Necklace
So Sarah and I are up in the Traverse City area this week on vacation, and besides eating deep fried Oreos, we are also busy treasure hunting. We’ve found many blog-worthy things up here, so stay tuned. In the meantime, I saw a “holy grail” item in person today that I will be thinking about for a long time…
While in Leland, MI we saw this tiny store called Tampico. It turned out to be my dream come true, which Sarah was certainly thrilled by. She finally left me at the store to go venture elsewhere because I had basically set up residence.
The store was mostly Zuni jewelry which I am obsessed with, as well as Mexican old pawn pieces and newer Michigan fossil jewelry. I was chatting with the owner about Zuni earrings when he mentioned a super rare Zuni fetishes necklace he had in the back.
I had seen Zuni fetishes before, and was actually looking at some in this store. I had never seen a fetishes necklace in person though. Ok, so before we get into that…
Zuni fetishes are little carved animals (out of fossils, mother of pearl, corals, rocks, etc.) that represent guardian animals and important tribal icons. They are cool and adorable. The necklace this man had was owned by an important member of the Zuni community, and it was made from fetishes collected for years by her family. He bought it out of her estate for an undisclosed amount, although I saw a price tag on it that said $980.
I obviously cannot afford this necklace so it will remain a holy grail for now. However, while in the back of the store looking at this, the owner mentioned some other Zuni jewelry he purchased out of this estate. He had yet to sort and price it, but agreed to show me anyway. I instantly fell in love with some handmade sterling and turquoise earrings. He offered them to me for $70, which is a steal. I’ve seen smaller and less impressive Zuni earrings for about $125.
Here they are:
They’re larger size, about 2 inches long each. And they look very cool on. After I bought them, I kept telling Sarah that I was “happy as a clam.” They really made my day!