Omar Ramsden was born in 1873 in Sheffield, and grew to be one of England’s most famous and collectable silversmiths.
Ramsden’s style of silver was heavily influenced by his artistic education, and as well as apprenticing with a silversmith, he also attended the Sheffield School of Art as well as the Royal College of Art.
It is here where Ramsden met his long term partner and collaborator Alwyn Carr, who the Sheffield Corporation Scholarship in 1893, closely followed by Ramsden receiving the same prize only a year later. This artistic background to their creative partnership heavily informed the silverware which they created and the influence of Celtic art is evident in many of their pieces.
They opened a studio together in 1898, and their partnership lasted 20 years until 1915, when Carr was granted a commission in the Royal Army Service Corps and was forced to leave for France. In spite of their studio being based in London’s Chelsea, both makers being originally from Sheffield and having learned their craft there, they continued to hallmark some of their pieces with the Sheffield assay mark.
Omar Ramsden and Alwyn Carr combined their separate attributes of business acumen, strong artistic direction, financial expertise and support and understanding of popular silverware styles to create a profitable and highly regarded silver studio.
Their silverware was most commonly in the Arts and Crafts style, which was popular at the time. Their proclivity for adding Medieval, Tudor, Gothic and Renaissance elements resulted in the duo receiving many large ecclesiastical commissions, which was not only financially beneficial to their business, but also cemented their reputation as highly regarded Silver makers.
Owing to the war, the partnership of Omar Ramsden and Alwyn Carr ceased in 1919. Omar Ramsden continued to create silver, and by the 1930s was directing a team of twenty staff in the creation of his silverware. After the separation of Omar Ramsden and Alwyn Carr, Omar Ramsden’s mark became "OMAR RAMSDEN ME FECIT” - which translates from Latin to "Omar Ramsden made me”. Ramsden continued to run the workshop until his death in 1939.