A reader wondered how comfortable shell heishi necklaces are – if they are scratchy on your neck.
When I was a kid, I had some inexpensive shell necklaces that probably came from Florida that were rough cut pieces of shell, and yes, those WERE scratchy. And that type of shell necklace is still sold in tourist venues and as imports.
However, true, well-made Santo Domingo Pueblo heishi is smooth. The process of grinding and buffing produces a uniform, silky texture strand of shells or stones.
The extremely fine heishi is so smooth and silky it is sometime referred to as “liquid stone” because it drapes and falls like a luxurious wave.
Take a look at these to see how beautifully smooth the single strand classic turquoise heishi necklace on the left is and how fine it can be made in a 10 strand necklace made of jet, coral, turquoise and baby olive shell.