The Sheil Legacy

Patience and perfection are words synonymous with the Sheil family. Don Sheil was a silversmith with a vision. For years he had played around with metals. They held a fascination for him. It was nothing unusual for him to spend 12 hours a day, 7 days a week experimenting with them – never satisfied, always wanting to exploit the full potential of the alloy with which he was working. It was a tedious and time consuming passion and Don was a tough taskmaster on himself and those around him.

But, he was also a true artist and his talent, patience and design skills combined to lead him in the direction of creating a unique collection of hand made tableware. After exhaustive testing, he found that high purity aluminium, although a very sensitive metal to work with, had the properties he needed to implement his ideas. Processes were initiated so that the alloy could be etched, spun, beaten, polished and anodised to achieve a quality finish that would not tarnish or impart a metallic taste.

Don's son Mark was always Don’s right hand man. His technical appreciation was second to none within the industry, but he was no desk jockey. His days were spent on the workshop floor, hands on, making product.
The company has developed along with limited lines – a fact appreciated by collectors of the Don Sheil range. From its beginnings in a workshop on the Mornington Peninsula in 1971, it has never lost sight of that original vision of making hand made pieces of unique, functional tableware.

Mass production will never be an option. Each piece will continue to be hand made and engraved with the Don Sheil trademark signature for authenticity. No two items will ever be exactly the same. "One offs" are not uncommon.

Don and Mark's unique skills and trade secrets have been handed down, as it enters a third generation and continues to flourish among those who appreciate quality.

Don Sheil Australia continues to be a small business which incorporates fine craftsmanship along with the goal of maintaining a tradition of excellence rarely seen in today’s’ marketplace.