Ammonite Silver Pendant by Anthony Honahnie
This ammonite silver pendant is a fine example of Hopi sterling silver overlay. The drop shaped spiral design is based on an ancient ammonite fossil with the addition of Hopi rain and cloud symbols. The pendant measures 35mm in length including the sterling silver bale and hangs on a 46cm sterling silver chain. Jewellery designer and maker Anthony Honahnie is an elder of the Hopi tribe, who live in the Arizona desert.
Hopi overlay is constructed from two layers of sterling silver. A design is traced on a sheet of silver and is then painstakingly cut out with a jeweller’s saw by hand. This top design layer is then silver soldered to the bottom layer of silver. Texturing is added to the bottom layer in all the visible areas of the design using a hammer and a small punch. The piece is then trimmed to it’s final shape and size. Next the assembled item is hammered into its final form, contoured, and the textured negative areas of the design are oxidised black creating high contrast to enhance the effect of the design. The top surface silver is then buffed to either a matte-like satin finish or to a mirror-like high polish.