Namb’e, a Southwestern Company with International Design Awards

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My Mother-in-Law, Catherine, was lovingly referred to as “an elegant pack rat”. Meaning she kept almost everything but everything kept was in order, wrapped and carefully stored if it wasn’t being used or admired on a shelf. It was so with this remarkable Namb’e “Rain Drop” Candle Gift Bowl. (Sometimes referred to as “Tear Drop”.)

The bowl itself measures 3 6/8” wide at its widest point, 4 6/8” long, with a gently tapering height from 1 1/8 at its rounded end, 1” at its sides and 6/8” high at the tip. It stands as perfection of sleek Modernist Design and form. Its orange-colored candle has been poured directly into the bowl because heat, even as high as 500 degrees, will not harm the finish. Small plastic flowers of yellow and orange, along with their individual leaves have been anchored within the wax for permanence. A substantial twisted wick remains fully intact as when it was placed.

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If it reminds you of Desert flowers and colors, it should. Nambe has always shown its South-Western heritage. From its name which loosely translates from the Pueblo American Native dialect “Tewa” as the word for “Rounded Earth” it has always used the simple, natural yet elegant shapes and colors found North of Santa Fe, New Mexico.

On the bottom of the bowl you will note the words “BY NAMB’E” and “523”, which is a style number that has been retired. Above the last number “3” is s the artisans mark of the person that crafted this hand-made Sand Cast bowl for Namb’e.

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Condition is Very Good Unused Vintage. There is some ware to the bottom of the bowl, but is actually acceptable and expected from being moved over the years. A very few marks found in the wax near the yellow flower edge, and very light marks on the surface of the candle, but almost unnoticeable to the unaided eye. (I take close up high-resolution photo’s so you can see what is there, however it is always smaller and hardly seen when it arrives and you hold it in your hands.)

I have only given this a light dusting, because if you should want the brighter shine this metal can obtain it certainly can be done using the specialize Namb’e polish and very fine grit (000) or (0000) steel wool. However the natural sheen some collectors desire takes many years to put back on. I should also note here that my daughter informed me that some pictures in my shop show deeper colors on when viewed on her phone, so the oranges in this may look deeper.

This one is definitely from the time capsule. Almost never seen today with the candle and decorated flowers intact it is perfect for your Vintage Home Decor.

F.Y.I. Namb’e is an 8 metal Aluminum-based Alloy that was discovered in 1951 by Martin Eden, a former Metallurgist with the Los Alamos National Laboratory and named it after a small Pueblo in the Sangre de Cristo Mountains of New Mexico called Namb’e. Later that year he partnered with Peter and Pauline Cable to form the new Company, Namb’e Mills, which is headquartered in Santa Fe.

All manufacture of the designs of the Namb’e products was done individually, by hand, by local artisans up until 2006 when production was moved oversees to India and China where, the company assures, the same exacting methods are used in production today.

Namb’e is loved by all for its ability to withstand the high temperatures of cooking as well as the ability to handle being frozen. It has properties that allow the metal to retain heat and continue cooking food even after being removed from the oven or broiler, thus reducing energy use. It also retains cold temperatures for prolonged times, and so can keep food at any desired temperature.

Namb’e Mills designs have been given many accolades from international design awards, and is on permanent display at the Museum of Modern Art in New York, and the British Museum in London.

Polish designed specifically for Namb’e metal is easily obtainable online through the official Namb’e Company website, as well as other online retailers.

See this listing and more photographs at http://www.rafterroom.rubylane.com

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