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716 S. Los Angeles St.
Los Angeles, CA

(310) 489-3763

Kristen Dorsey Designs, LLC was founded in 2011 by Kristen Dorsey, an award-winning Chickasaw metalsmith living and working in Huntington Beach, CA. For Kristen, jewelry goes beyond ornamental adornment; it is a medium with which she has forged her cultural identity as a citizen of the Chickasaw Nation, a Native American tribe originally from the southeast.  Utilizing natural gemstones, precious metals, and other materials, her handcrafted jewelry pieces are a unique mix of Chickasaw visual traditions infused with inspiration drawn from the beauty of the California Coast.  Dorsey’s philosophy is that “jewelry is a sacred narrative; it captures moments of significance for the wearer such as transitions in life, relationships with one another, and with one’s community, cultural identity, and spirituality.”





Kristen Dorsey

Shields for the Water

Update! As of December 1st we have donated $980.00 to! Thank you to all of my amazing customers. I am so happy with the success of this campaign that I am extending it through December. The fight to stop the pipeline needs all of our support right now.
Sacred Stone Camp is where water protectors have been organizing since April 2016.  Visit for updates and information from the front-lines.

Sacred Stone Camp is where water protectors have been organizing since April 2016.  Visit for updates and information from the front-lines.

Dear friends, family, and KDD fans,

Never before has nearly every single tribal Nation united under one cause: Defending the Standing Rock Sioux Nation lands from the Dakota Access Pipeline.  There is so much urgency around this issue right now that I am compelled to break from my standard newsletter and blog content to help spread the word and generate support for Standing rock.

Since April, The Standing Rock Sioux Nation has been joined in protest by hundreds of Tribal Nations around the country to block the construction of the Dakota Access Pipeline; an oil pipeline planned to cross under the Missouri River adjacent to the Standing Rock Reservation.  It is feared that the pipeline will eventually cause catastrophic contamination of the Missouri River watershed due to inevitable oil spills.  Every day, thousands of Indigenous peoples and non-Native allies are demonstrating both at the pipeline construction site and in cities around the country.  They have courageously stood up against militarized police who are using pepper spray, rubber bullets, attack dogs, and other forms of violent riot-control tactics.  These un-armed people are all ages and from many different backgrounds and states.  They are fighting not only for clean water, but also tribal sovereignty, clean energy, human rights, and the health and well being of generations to come.

As a small way to show our solidarity, Kristen Dorsey Designs pledges to to the following:

Through the month of November we will be donating 50% of our sales of the small shield necklaces directly to Standing Rock

I selected this design because the shield shape symbolizes guardianship.  Wear the shield pendant and know that you are one of the many water protectors who stand with standing rock, the environment, and clean water for all. 

Small Shield Pendant in Rose Gold
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A Love Letter to my KDDbabes

Kristen Dorsey

I am constantly inspired by the women around me.  My social media feeds, my family life, and my professional life are filled to the brim with women who are accomplishing their goals while inspiring and supporting each other.   

These fierce females push me to live fearlessly and to not shy away from any obstacles I encounter.  I feel incredibly humbled and lucky that they choose to wear my jewelry, whether they pair it with work boots, or wear it in the boardroom, they create positive change in the world and do it in style.

This is why throughout the year I have been highlighting ladies who each have a unique passion which has led them to be leaders in their fields along with the jewelry pieces that compliment their individual style.

Archaeologist Jessica Fleming Crawford is a force to be reckoned with. She is the Southeast Regional Director for The Archaeological Conservancy, a non-profit preservation organization. When important sites are threatened by looting and development, she works tirelessly to save them. My tribe, the Chickasaw Nation is especially grateful to her and her organization for her work to protect the sacred sites of our southeastern homelands. For more in Jessica, check out her interview!

Traci Morris is the Director of the American Indian Policy Institute at Arizona State University; A Member of the Board of Directors at the Phoenix Indian Center; a Member of the Consumer Affairs Committee at the Federal Communications Commission. Through all of these roles, she fights to create economic and educational opportunities for Native Americans in the digital age.

Traci's interview can be found here.

Sun Disk Ring in Sterling Silver
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Jessica Hardy, a past olympic swimmer,  has won a total of twenty-eight medals in major international competition, fourteen gold, nine silver, and five bronze spanning the Olympics, World and the Pan Pacific Championships. However, what I admire most about her is the work she does to educate and inspire future generations of female athletes.  She teaches that “you can beat the boys”. “ I am lucky play a sport where both genders train together, and I get great satisfaction out of beating my male teammates. Expecting greatness from yourself doesn’t have to be limited by our gender, never be afraid to push yourself beyond what is expected of you."

Read the rest of Jessica's interview now!

Kristen made Jessica custom studs for her competitions because she love to express her style in the water with unique studs.  Get the look with these studs!

Native American jewelry is beautifully diverse

Kristen Dorsey

What do you picture in your mind when you think of Native American jewelry? Most people picture pieces made of turquoise and silver...the pieces made famous by the Fred Harvey Railroad era (1880s-1930s) where southwestern Native communities were featured as cultural tourist attractions along the railroad routes.  As a result of this complex history as well as today's popular stereotypes of Native Americans in popular culture, the diversity of materials, meanings, and techniques is lost on the general public.  Through my work I seek to educate people about the Southeastern design and adornment practices that my tribe connects to.

Native America is actually made up of hundreds of distinct cultures - each with it’s own language, religion, art, and fashion. Native American jewelry is equally diverse, with each tribe having a style all it’s own.

Each region of this country has a beautifully rich and diverse history of personal adornments. For southeastern tribes, like mine, the Chickasaw Nation, traditional jewelry materials include freshwater pearls from the Mississippi, intricately carved pendants or gorgets crafted out of conch shells from the Gulf of Mexico, and native copper from the Great Lakes region.

My new collection, of Earth and Place, combines elements of my Chickasaw heritage with the Art Deco architecture I find around my home in Los Angeles. As you wear these pieces, I hope you will consider how your heritage and history gives meaning to your life today to create a style that is all your own.


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