Taxco Pendants and Traditions in Hispanic Culture
Consider choosing one of the lovely Taxco pendants handmade by Mexican silversmithsif you ever found yourself wishing for a little piece of Mexico to hold close to your heart. Silver jewelry is a Mexican tradition, and for centuries the city of Taxco in Mexico, has been the epicenter of this tradition.
The artisans of Taxco work in family-owned shops known as talleres, creating beautiful, unique silver jewelry that represents various facets of Mexican history. These Hispanic artisans use refined, lacy shapes, open scrollwork, and filigree to decorate Mexican silver earrings in a style inherited from Spanish colonists. These Mexican artisans also use animal symbols to create Taxco pendants that echo the talismans of pre-Columbian cultures like the Aztec and Maya.
The most common animals are eagles, jaguars, and quetzals. Geometric patterns and organic shapes like trees and leaves are also common motifs for Taxco silver. Symbols like these above require careful crafstamship. This work is very different from the work artisans make in dichroic glass jewelry for example, or men’s leather bracelets where artisans use silver to set the glass and work the leather along side to give it its fantastic looks.
Of course, many Taxco pendants are also influenced by Mexico’s dominant religion, Catholicism. You can find many different saint’s medals, as well as beautiful silver cross pendants. Choose from plain, sleek crosses or elaborate filigree ones. Besides Taxco jewelry there are many other unique Hispanic artisan jewelry pieces you can also choose from.
Facts About Taxco’s Handmade Silver Pendants
In colonial times, silver used to be considered a metal for the poor, but after gold prices skyrocketed aristocrats also began wearing silver.
Many of today’s Hispanic hancrafted jewelry designs find their inspiration in nature and culture. Round forms, dominoes, birds and trees typical in Latin America, make their way into the artisans designs.
Taxco was primarily a mining town until the 1930s, when an American named William Spratling visited the town, retrained local people, and made Taxco famous for artisanal silver jewelry and today silver and tourism are the mainstays of Taxco’s economy.
Taxco’s silversmithing tradition started with Spanish priests, who trained local people to make silver items for Catholic churches. If you visit Taxco in person, you can watch as your unique piece of custom-made jewelry is designed, forged, and finished.
One of the main benefits of buying Mexican silver handmade in Taxco is the potential for ordering custom items. When you commission a pair of Taxco silver earrings, for example, you can get them made to your exact specifications, and you will know that no one else has a pair like them.
A perfect complement to your silver pendant is to pair it with Taxco silver earrings or a bracelet that carry the same quality pieces with similar designs.
Fun Facts about Taxco and Taxco Silver
- Taxco is among the oldest silver mining sites in the New World.
- The name Taxco comes from the indigenous name Tlacho, place of the ball game.
- Taxco is famous for having some of the purest silver deposits in the world.
- Due to its purity, Taxco silver is less prone to tarnishing.
Keeping Your Taxco Silver Perfect
Taxco silver should be stored in a plastic pouch whenever you’re not wearing it.