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Dentalium shell choker with tree agate

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Dentalium was one of the first materials used by native people to fashion chokers and breastplates. The shells, which were harvested on the east coast were traded among many tribes and as far away as California. The shell's length and quality determined value. Highest quality shells would be about 2.25" long, and a dozen would typically be strung together Certain men, who became known as "Indian bankers," tattooed marks on their arms with which to measure the length of the shells. It appears to have been around the late 1800’s that the dentalium was replaced by the bone hair pipe as the favored medium for chokers and breastplates. At first the bone pipe stems brought in by the whites were used in jewelry until seeing how they had become a material favored by the Indian community, the pipe stems were manufactured as beads and brought in for trade between the whites and native peoples.

I choose tree agate 6mm rounds and black leather for this one. Tree Agate is known as the prosperity stone. Tree Agate will bring the intricacies of life into better focus, encouraging you to be able to better see the connectivity of the branches within life's web, and will then help you keep from getting too caught up in all its details. Tree Agate tells you not to miss the forest for the trees. It pushes you to enjoy the business of any season without getting overwhelmed by it, by asking you to remember just what truly is important. Use Tree Agate to enrich your life, to bring expansion yet stability to your surroundings, to enhance your own growth and feelings of self-worth, and to branch out and discover the unique treasures of family and friends.

The dentalium shells are approximately 1 3/4” L. This choker will fit 12 1/2” diameter necks and larger. The soft deerskin spacer and ties are all hand cut and this choker feels very comfortable to wear, the natural curve of the dentalium hugs the curve of the neck beautifully. This is a beautiful and unique choker and my own design.

Thank you for looking at my work today, please visit my shop home page to see my other handmade chokers and jewelry.


Dentalium shell choker with tree agate


  • Handmade item
  • Materials: shell, leather
  • Ships worldwide from United States
  • Feedback: 48 reviews
  • Favorited by: 54 people