Wednesday, November 14, 2007


Nambe is a small town in New Mexico north of Santa Fe. It is also the name of one of my favorite products from New Mexico: the metal alloy bowls and vases from Nambé Mills.

I think I got my first piece of Nambé from the store out on the highway to Española in the 1970s. Since then, every trip to New Mexico has meant an opportunity to check out the products at the Nambé store, which is now located on Paseo de Peralta in downtown Santa Fe.

Nambé Mills was founded in 1951 in the small town of Nambé north of Santa Fe, near Nambé Pueblo. Nambé metal products are cast from a metal alloy, and the pieces themselves have a beauty and simplicity that very much gives a New Mexico mystique to the metal ware.

Nambé is an eight-metal alloy, which is chiefly aluminum. It was created at the Los Alamos National Laboratory in the 1940s. The alloy is said to have the luster of silver but the strength of iron. It is safe for cooking and resists tarnishing. However, acidic foods can discolor it. The pieces of Nambé ware are often sandcasted and highly polished. It is also expensive, but I think of it as an investment, becuse it will last for years and years.

My small collection consists of several bowls, a covered casserole dish and a tall modern styled vase. We have also purchased Nambé for wedding and anniversary gifts for our children, who now have their own growing collections.

My dream? Acquire more pieces of Nambé for my future home in New Mexico.

The Nambé company calls their products “timeless, simple and elegant”. Indeed they are.


Much of the information for this post (as well as the photos) comes from the Nambé website at and also from


Buck Pennington said...

I chased the Nambé link, Towanda, and see they have some exquisite glass pieces, too. I particularly like the Turquoise vase and were I still living my old life...I'd have one of those! Alas, space considerations being what they are, I have not a single vase in my living quarters any longer. More's the pity. make your choices, right? ;-)

Lin said...

Oh my, you and Sally both. She is IN LOVE with their creations and has some nice pieces around. Thanks for the background info on it!

My generator-turner-off-er finally gave up and left me to my own devices tonight so I am sneaking in a few more visits than normal for an evening.

Catmoves said...

The City of Albuquerque buys Nambe ware to present to its retiring executives. I'm just not sure which fund that comes from, though.
The show room at the Nambe store is very impressive, with subtlety and taste. At least it was on my last visit there.
Another good thing about visiting is that there's a couple of casinos near by that allow smoking.

Towanda said...

Buck ~ I didn't know Nambé was producing all the glass items; I will be interested in going to theie Santa Fe showeoom the next time I am in town so I can see all the newest products.

Lin ~ I KNEW I really liked Sally ~ I see that she has exquisite taste. :)

catmoves ~ Thanks for visitin my blog. I love the Nambé showroom; I love the casinos as well!!!