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Raven Cheyenne

jewelry designer, owner of Nizhoni Designs

The passion I have for jewelry came at a young age.  My aunt Mary gave me a bracelet, that had a mother of pearl heart with a garnet stone inset, which was my first piece of jewelry.  I have fond memories of playing in her jewelry box trying on various pieces of her collection.  I felt beautiful and special.  The bracelet is long gone, but not the memories or extraordinary emotions or feelings which sparked a fascination and interest with jewelry to this very day.  I am largely self-taught, though I have attended numerous workshops and classes given by some wonderful jewelry artists such as Joyce Scott and Carole Horn.  The knowledge that I gained from the educational exposure inspired me to teach several workshops and community programs on beadwork.

Familiar with several techniques of jewelry making such as looming, weaving, wiring and stringing, stringing beads is what I am most drawn to.  Inspired and influenced by various aspects of my Indigenous background, I view jewelry as adornment and create pieces from the earth’s elements- semi-precious stones, copper, sterling silver and glass beads that are as unique as the person who adorns themselves with my designs.  Turquoise is a stone that I gravitate towards.  Blue is one of my favorite colors and I can find varying shades of it in turquoise.

I have had the privilege of showcasing my work in various venues throughout New Jersey, New York and Pennsylvania.  My work has been featured in the publication Somerset Gallery, the American Craft Museum and local news publications.