We’re very excited to now carry the work of award-winning Chickasaw designer  
 Kristen Dorsey. From the runways of LA Fashion Week to the pages of British Vogue, Dorsey’s pieces are celebrated throughout the contemporary jewelry world.
 
 

Inspired by her Southeastern Native heritage, her innovative and elegant designs complement the works we currently have in the gallery while bringing entirely new stylistic elements as well.

 

Each style Dorsey designs falls under a larger Native Southeastern or Chickasaw theme, as she takes specific cultural references and abstracts them into beautiful new images.

The sky serpent cuff is part of her Schokmalli’ Collection. Schokmalli’ means lightening in Chickasaw, and this collection explores celestial themes in stunning forms of jewelry. For the cuff, she creates a cloud-like formation of individually textured scales representing the sky serpent, a powerful deity who controls lightening, wind and rain.
 
Dorsey based a series of earring and pendant designs on the Banner stone, a ceremonial object from southeastern Native cultures whose functional use was related to spear throwing. The shape of the shell inlay in the earrings is inspired by ancient bannerstones, which are perfectly symmetrical and balanced, representing the duality of the sky 
world and the underwater world.
 
 

 

Other sources of inspiration stem from ancient shell gorgets and from spirals found incised on ancient Chickasaw pottery.

 

Dorsey creates adornment infused with Chickasaw history. She uses metalworking methods derived from ancient Southeastern relief work, an intricate process of repoussé and chasing, and she uses traditional materials including shell, copper and bronze. Conscious of her legacy, she works only with materials that are environmentally friendly and ethically sourced, built by hand, conflict free or recycled. 


She describes, “Working with these processes, materials, and imagery connects me to my ancestors. I firmly believe that culture is never lost, but rather forgotten, and creating art is a way to remember. I strive to create timeless jewelry rooted within tradition while remaining relevant to contemporary fashion.”  

We look forward to learning more about Kristen and where her inspiration comes from, as we continue to admire her impressive designs!

 

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