Fine Silver and 18ct gold F...Damian Miles Jeweller
About me? Well, here goes. I'm a stick of rock, a Jeweller through and through. On Folksy you will find my handmade limited run and one of a kind pieces. My website also has the items you won't find on Folksy such as Antique and Vintage jewellery, Coins, Banknotes and a some services I offer.
On the practical side of things, I am largely self taught since 1992, with a few pointers and courses along the way. I am also a qualified Gemmologist and Valuer.
I love the variety that my work enables me to have. One day I could be making an engagement ring to a customers design, the next jewellery repairs and re-stringing and then valuations of jewellery or coins or making a totally custom piece of luxury such as a silver inlaid Buffalo Horn Catapult. It's simply great! I work in the traditional jewellery metals, Silver, Gold, Platinum and Palladium, but also wood, bone and leather for some pieces.
My inspirations are drawn from many avenues, from nature to mythology, science fiction to everyday objects. I have a fascination with symbols and symbology, which is sometimes evident in my work. Being based in Okehampton, I am lucky enough to have Dartmoor on my doorstep, a great place to take a moment, and beautiful whatever the weather. I design and make pieces that I like, and these vary greatly in style and function. I am not a jewellery mill, churning out pieces just because they might sell, but I like to take the time to develop an idea into a piece. The fine silver cuffs are a great example of this, each one is slightly different and takes over 10,000 hammer blows to make, start to finish.
I try to buy ethically and use recycled or environmentally friendly products when possible. This ranges from polishes and cleaning products right through to the materials to make finished pieces. Many pieces I make incorporate reclaimed gemstones and enjoy giving them a new life. The fine silver pieces are made from recycled and locally refined silver, which drastically cuts down the "metal miles".
My family is a great source of inspiration and support, especially my wife, Kassandra, who keeps me in check when I need to be. Our two children keep me on my toes and my daughter has even designed a few pieces (and my wife to be fair). Even my son sorts through gemstones with me.
I started in the jewellery trade full time in 1992 with an independent jewellery shop in Newton Abbot, Devon, but I was making and repairing jewellery before then. Whilst there I learnt about many aspects of jewellery, watches, clocks and silverware. I also gained my Retail Jewellers Diploma from the National Association of Goldsmiths'.
In 1995 it was time to move on and I joined another independent jeweller in Exeter, the County Jewellers, working my way up to the management of the shop and gained more knowledge and qualifications. Sadly in 2014 the shop closed after over 125 years trading. From here I launched in to self employment and haven't looked back since.
I decided to set on a path of continued professional development in 2005 and have taken various industry specific courses and gained qualifications in jewellery, gemmology, diamond grading and appraisal theory. To this day, I still make a point learning when ever I can.
Thank you for taking the time to get to know a little about me.
Damian J. Miles
GG (GIA), AJP (GIA), R.J. Dip. FNAJ, CPAA Specialist.