Purple Cowrie & Pectin Heishe Shell Earrings – these simple yet elegant earrings feature beautiful Cowrie Shells (nickel coin size) along with Pectin Heishe shell accents.
Size: Length: approximately 3.5″ (one size fits all)
PHOTOS ARE OF THE EXACT EARRINGS THAT YOU WILL RECEIVE.
Colors may vary slightly due to the differences between digital images vs. reality and the differences in color on various devices and screens.
Cowrie or cowry (plural cowries) is the common name for a group of small to large sea snails, marine gastropod mollusks in the family Cypraeidae, the cowries.
The term porcelain derives from the old Italian term for the cowrie shell (porcellana) due to their similar appearance. Shells of certain species have historically been used as currency in several parts of the world, as well as being used, in the past and present, very extensively in jewelry, and for other decorative and ceremonial purposes.
The cowrie was the shell most widely used worldwide as shell money. It is most abundant in the Indian Ocean and was collected in the Maldive Islands, in Sri Lanka, along the Malabar coast India, in Borneo and on other East Indian islands, and in various parts of the African coast from Ras Hafun to Mozambique. Cowrie shell money was important in the trade networks of Africa, South Asia, and East Asia.
Some species in the family Ovulidae are also often referred to as cowries. In the British Isles the local Trivia species (family Triviidae, species Trivia monacha, and Trivia arctica) are sometimes called cowries. The Ovulidae and the Triviidae are somewhat closely related to Cypraeidae.
Source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cowrie (opens in a new window)
Heishe or heishi (pronounced “hee shee”) are small disc- or tube-shaped beads made of organic shells or ground and polished stones. They come from the Kewa Pueblo people (formerly Santo Domingo Pueblo) of New Mexico, before the use of metals in jewelry by that people. The name is the word for shell bead in the Eastern Keresan language of the Santo Domingo Indians.
The oldest specimens of heishe date back to around 6000 BCE, although the same technique was used in northern Africa 30,000 years ago, using ostrich eggshell.
Modern heishe beads are commonly mechanically mass-produced; however, some artists still handmake beads. The beads are hand-chipped, with holes drilled through their centers using pointed stones.