Tufa Cast Jewelry
If you’re looking for a unique, completely one-of-a-kind piece of jewelry, then Tufa Cast Jewelry is for you! It’s made using an intricate, labor-intensive process that cannot be repeated using the same materials. These one-off pieces are made using tufa, a compressed volcanic ash material found on the Navajo reservation, which is easier to carve than sandstone and leaves a unique texture once the silver or gold has cooled. Most tufa molds break after one casting and are themselves carved works of art.
The process starts when a tufa stone is cut in half and rubbed together to create a perfectly flush surface. Next, the artist carves their design into the flat surface inside of the mold and binds the two pieces together with clamps, then the stone gets carbonized with a torch. Sterling Silver or Gold is melted and poured into the tufa mold, and once it cools, the hardened metal gets taken out and carefully sanded and cleaned, while making sure to leave the porous texture from the stone. The final step is to shape the flat metal into its final form, such as a cuff, ring or pendant. It is guaranteed to be the only one in the world!