It’s ten days until Mother’s Day, guys. You’re thinking, geez, should I get my mom flowers again? Nothing wrong with flowers (and if you go with flowers for Mother’s Day, use Fleurop, the world’s most extensive flower delivery service), but why not surprise her with something a little more exotic? How about some beautiful handmade turquoise jewelry from Nepal? You can get Turquoise Teardrop Jewelry — a necklace, earrings, or a set of both — from the international collection of gifts at the National Geographic Store.
The Turquoise Teardrop Necklace and Earrings are artistic and graceful (just like your mom), and come out of the ancient jewelry-making tradition of the Shakya clan, which in ancient times dwelt in the foothills of the Himalayas and had their capital city located in what is present-day Nepal. The Shakya were known for their skill in metalwork.
You’re probably aware of the importance of turquoise to the Navajos, but did you know that it has been an important stone to ancient cultures throughout the world? In Tibet, the sky is referred to as “the turquoise of heaven,” and most Tibetans own at least one piece of turquoise jewelry. The Anasazi Indians believed that their ancestors first entered the world through a cave that is now a famous turquoise mine in New Mexico. As early as 3100 BC, the Egyptians made jewelry out of green turquoise; the Egyptian name for turquoise (mefkat) was synonymous with “joy” and “delight.” The Aztecs inlaid turquoise with gold, malachite, jade, and other semi-precious materials and used it to make ceremonial masks, knives, and shields.
This classic teardrop design from the National Geographic Store is a modern rendering in sterling silver and turquoise of a shape used by the Shakya to help one focus on one’s spiritual intentions. These handmade earrings and necklaces are works of art, yet are very reasonably priced.
The National Geographic Store partners with artisans from around the globe — but particularly in economically- and politically-challenged areas — to produce products for their customers that will reflect the highest standards of craftsmanship and quality, while simultaneously helping provide a stable income to areas beset by instability. Their products are thus a win-win for their customers and the artisans with whom they work.
Here are two more interesting jewelry designs from the National Geographic Store that would also make excellent, thoughtful gifts for Mother’s Day:
These Kashmiri Floral Bangles are made by artisans in the mountains of Kashmir using an advanced form of papier-mâché. Richly-colored local pigments and gold accents are then used to paint traditional floral, paisley, and bird patterns on each bracelet. You get 5 lightweight bangles for only $29.
If your mom is into history, archaeology, or truly one-of-a-kind jewelry, she will appreciate this Ancient Roman Coin Necklace. The artist who makes these necklaces uses Roman coins from the second to fourth century A.D., each one depicting a Roman emperor of the era. The coins are set in sterling silver and can be worn with either side facing out. Who was the last person to spend one of these coins? Was it used to purchase a dagger? A basket of grain? This is living history. And where else can you find items like this but at the National Geographic Store online? Of course, they have many more jewelry designs to choose from, so check them out.
Everything they sell is unconditionally guaranteed. You (or your gift recipient) must be satisfied with your purchase or you can return or exchange it. From high-tech to classical-tech, they have a huge selection of fascinating, educational, unique, and beautiful products from around the globe.
Would you like more gift ideas for Mother’s Day? Then see my post on out-of-the-ordinary Mother’s Day gifts.