Earrings....Native?

This one’s a two-fer, plus a couple of questions.

New earrings… Yay! Got these at the flea market at the beach from a reputable seller who says that both are NA-made. Any thoughts on the maker of the Thunderbirds…the initials are DJ…and judging by the heads and other earrings by the same maker that the seller had, this person seems to have a distinctive style. Does anybody recognize it? The inlay is onyx, mother of pearl, and tiger eye.

I love the crabs !! No initials on the back, only a sterling stamp. The teeny inlay is shell, spiny oyster, and turquoise/lapis as the line in the middle. Do you think they truly are Native? The work is very good and detailed, but not a theme that you normally see in Native American jewelry.





This last picture is something else that I picked up that I thought was neat. Not Native, but a good use of old forks… A self-defense keychain. Not bad for $5!

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DJ - Dennis James
or
DJ - Don Johnson

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https://www.pinterest.com/pin/564216659553389359/

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@Steve thanks for the tips! I am now hearing the theme song for Miami Vice in my head. :joy:

Love the fork ideas page! Makes a perfect octopus. I actually have a necklace holding a turquoise stone similar to the one there…very cool!!

I don’t think the crabs are Native, though fun and beachy. I could see them as something offered in a beach town shop. The first pair is questionable to me as NA, or perhaps it’s a student effort–stones seem glued in. The imagery is a little indeterminate: at first I thought peyote bird, then possibly a turtle, not sure.

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@chicfarmer thanks for your input! The center stones in the bird earrings actually are held in by tiny serrated bezels, I had to pull out a jeweler’s loupe to see it, and they’re fairly short. It’s a tiny shadow box.

I think it’s supposed to be a Thunderbird, although I see what you mean that it could be interpreted several ways. The other larger pieces that the seller had that were by the same artist were more clearly bird-like, and employed bezels to hold the center stones.

I think they look like little peyote birds, especially their heads, and the wings look like they’re coming up beside the head. To me Thunderbirds look different than that. But as I look more I see the turtle also! Maybe a Rorschach test :thinking:

They’re both cute!

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You don’t need no stinking mace, you have a…fork

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Thanks @Ziacat! What is the difference between peyote birds and thunderbirds? I never knew those were different and use the terms interchangeably…maybe erroneously! :drooling_face:

Hahahaha. It would hurt to get stuck with it, and be an ugly surprise, but bet I end up sticking myself more digging for my keys.

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I didn’t really understand the difference until I bought a cuff years ago that has what is called a peyote bird on it.


The Thunderbird looks different and has a different meaning. This is the only one I have right now.


I quickly looked up and screenshotted a couple definitions. I imagine other people on here will have better detail on it than I do.

There was a thread on here not long ago about Thunderbird rings. To me it seems like Thunderbirds vary a little more in looks than the peyote birds.

So when I voice text, peyote bird comes always comes out as payout bird LOL

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@Ziacat Oh wow, I guess I have been ignorant about that! Thanks for setting me right.

LOL at payout bird. My phone interprets a lot of what I say pretty poorly. Apparently Google doesn’t speak Southern. Haha

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I honestly had no idea either till I bought that cuff, and the owner of the shop told me. I thought they were the same thing too.
And I love your little bird earrings (if that’s what they are, they do kind of look like a turtle), because I love birds!

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Apparently my phone doesn’t speak Hoosier

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And I think your bird pieces are beautiful!

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The crabs are the coolest!!
This is my peyote/water bird necklace. I also, am at a loss as to the exact definitions of each one. Is it simply the position of the wings? Could you add trailing flames to any of them and call it a phoenix?

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https://nativeamericanjewelrytips.wordpress.com/2010/06/19/native-american-symbols-water-bird-peyote-bird-thunderbird/

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Peyote bird is elongated and thunderbird is usually shorter.

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It also seems to me that peyote bird’s heads are looking straight ahead, like you’re looking down on them from the top. Thunderbirds always seem to be looking to the right or the left, and like I said before, they often look like Pileated Woodpeckers (when they’re inlaid).

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Thank you, Steve. That’s the link I screenshotted (not sure that’s a real word) from. For some reason I have a hard time getting links inserted into the body of a post.