Mimbres Design Necklace by Betty Stephan using a hand painted Mimbres Design Cab by Marsha Hedrick

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Mimbres Design - Jewelry with a Back Story


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Another beautiful Necklace created by Betty Stephan using a Marsha Hedrick hand painted Mimbres Design Cab.  The red highlights in this necklace really make the design pop.  This is a perfect example of how a simple black and white design can be taken up a notch and become a really strikingly beautiful eye catching design.

I personally really like this big eyed bug design.  It makes me smile when I see it and combined with the lovely bead artistry of Betty Stephan I find this necklace very appealing. 


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Do you like having a nice back story to go with your jewelry?  Mimbres designs will give you a nice starting point for a good back story.

So who were the Mimbres? 

From around 200 A.D. to about 1150 A.D. a group of farmers lived along the banks of the Mimbres river in southwestern New Mexico. Near the end of this time around 1000 to 1100 A.D. they began to make the beautiful black and white design pottery which they are known for. This pottery is distinctive in its intricate geometric designs with fine lines and stylized figures of animals, humans and bugs. After about 1150 A.D. their villages were abandoned and no more of their pottery is found.  Their pieces fall into two main groups.  Pieces with animal or figural designs and pieces with geometric designs distinctive due to their fine parallel lines.  Many of the animal, bird, bug, and figural designs also incorporate these fine lines making them very distinctive and striking.

This is a perfect starting point for your jewelry story.  It gives you a rich cultural background and some darn compelling designs to start from.   These rabbits are some of the hand painted choices available in my Bead Shop


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With the variety of items that I will be offering with these designs you can make everything from simple earrings like these shown here to more elaborate designs such as Betty's necklace.  The options are limited only by your imagination.   These earrings and a few other simple jewelry designs are available in my Native Jewelry Shop along with more examples of Native theme jewelry.  You may also like to visit the Pottery Shop where you can find examples of both reproductions of the Mimbres pottery and other pottery that was inspired by them.


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As an alternative to the black and white I am also offering these compelling designs in the sepia brown transfers.  The sepia brown blends wonderfully with copper which is such a popular metal for jewelry these days.  An added benefit of the sepia brown color is that they are more economical because they are made with hand made transfers rather than each one being individually hand painted.  You will find a growning number of designs and styles of both the black and white hand painted and the sepia brown transferred cabs, pendants and sets in my Bead Shop in the Native Category 

Coming in the March/April 2014 issue of Step by Step wire you will find a tutorial for a bracelet that utilizes these sepia brown bracelet focals combined with copper and red brass for a lovely bracelet that is both classy and casual.


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Here is another view of that beautiful necklace.  Now its your turn to pick one of the compelling Mimbres designs and make your own Masterpiece.