Being a silversmith is not a typical career path. Many of the team say that it is a job they found by chance and fell in love with. That is certainly true of George Douglas, our newest silversmith, who graduated from our H&I Apprenticeship programme earlier this month.
George had his first glimpse of life at Hamilton & Inches in 2014 when he joined us as part of a work experience programme. Spending just three days with the company, in that short time he was introduced to a world unlike any other and immediately knew that silversmithing was the career path for him.
Following his placement, George began applying to universities to study jewellery and silversmithing and, having kept in close contact with the team at H&I, enquired on the off chance that an apprenticeship would be available. He joined the team officially on the 20th July 2015.
Following a six-year programme, George has not only excelled in his ability to craft medals, silver jewellery and more, but has become integral to the Hamilton & Inches team. Under the watchful eye of his master, David Ramsay, his passion is the creation of trophies, each unique and demanding a variety of smithing techniques.
For his final apprenticeship project, George was tasked with creating an item of his choosing, crafted from silver and designed to showcase the skills he has learned over the last six years. The result was an intricate trinket box, featuring rose thorns and turquoise, his birthstone. The item will be purchased by the Edinburgh Assay Office following a long-standing tradition and will take pride of place alongside pieces made by David, Paul and Ruth.
George with Tom Murray and Scott Walter of the Edinburgh Assay Office
“It was clear to us when George began his work experience with us that he was incredibly passionate about a potential career in silversmithing. Since joining the team, he has taken everything in his stride, creating exceptional work under the guidance of senior silversmith David Ramsay. We are incredibly excited for his future.” - Jackie Fowler, workshop manager.
One of just five silversmiths, including recently retired master Panos Kirkos, George joins a team of hand-selected craftspeople, each incredibly skilled in the art of chasing, soldering, piercing, hammering and more. The team is responsible for the creation of new and exciting jewellery collections, trophies for some of the biggest competitions in the world, bespoke commissions and the exceptional silverware range we have on display in our showroom and online.
Most importantly, George’s caring and can-do attitude makes him an addition to the entire team at Hamilton & Inches, who are all incredibly proud of his recent graduation.