Our Zuni bear charm bracelet features gorgeous fossilized ivory in variegated natural earth tones and a hand carved charm that makes this the perfect piece for any bear lover.
Our Zuni bear charm bracelet combines two favorite pieces—our Stepping Stones bracelet and our hand carved Zuni bear charm—in a piece that exudes organic materials and traditional motifs. This carved ivory bracelet is hand set in sterling silver, featuring an adjustable toggle clasp that fits most adult wrist sizes.
The traditional Zuni bear is one of six primary animal fetishes with a long tradition of guardianship for the Pueblo people: the bear, wolf, mole, eagle, mountain lion, and badger. The bear (Anshe) is much revered as the most powerful animal with potent protective qualities and roles in Pueblo culture. The bear has healing powers, a transformational capacity, nurturing instinct, and the inherent ability to go within, or hibernate.
Our Zuni bear is hand carved from fossilized mammoth ivory, an ancient material that is over 15,000 years old. Mammoth ivory has lain in permafrost or the earth for millennia, accreting a soft cream to deep caramel hue. It is unearthed and then carved and polished, producing a gorgeous finish much beloved for its richness and for the touch of antiquity it brings to fine jewelry and artisan crafts.
The bracelet is hand carved from fossilized walrus ivory, which at 500-3,000 years old is relatively young compared with its mammoth counterpart. Native Alaskans gather our fossilized walrus ivory after it has spent centuries in the earth. It is a valuable cultural and economic asset for these people who utilize the ivory for carving, sale, and trade.