Since 1983, P.H. Miller Studio has served clients all over the country, designing and crafting frames for some of our nation's finest collections and institutions. We offer a full range of frame styles at varying price points, and there is something for everybody. Regardless of price, we pride ourselves in delivering museum quality. No pre-made commercial moldings are used; everything is hand crafted to order right here in our studio in Berryville, Virginia.
Growing up in Connecticut, Peter began woodworking in his father's shop at a very early age. This instilled a foundation in, and passion for, woodworking and craftsmanship. As a young man, he worked in, and eventually owned, a small frame shop. Peter was not content with the quality of the commercial moldings available at the time, and thus began his lifetime pursuit in mastering the arts of frame making and water gilding. He joined the Society of Gilders, an organization dedicated to the education and preservation of the gilded arts. Through the society, Peter studied with many master gilders across America. His dedication showed, and the P.H. Miller Studio garnered a reputation for immaculate gilded surfaces and scrupulous attention to detail. Peter has a voracious appetite for knowledge, and believes that "perfection" does not exist. He constantly strives to push the limits of his ancient craft, and to revive its long forgotten traditions. In 2014, Peter moved his business to Berryville, VA from Woodbury, CT.
Peter especially loves the American Craftsman frames of the early and mid 20th Century, and in particular, the unique style of frames from Bucks County, Pennsylvania. Historically, American decorative and frame design was mostly dictated by the trends in Great Britain and Continental Europe. The end of the Victorian Era and beginning of the Craftsman Movement marked a stark shift away from this Trans-Atlantic dynamic. Americans began to develop
Christian Ferrante has worked at the P.H. Miller studio since 2017. Prior to working for Peter, he worked in the Frame Conservation Lab at the National Gallery of Art, Washington. Christian came to work at the studio with the hopes of inheriting Peter's wealth of knowledge in traditional water gilding and frame making. Apart from gilding, Christian also holds a love for wood finishing and decorative finishing. Frames often call for finishes other than gilding, such as faux marble, faux tortoise shell, or a high gloss French Polish. These techniques are increasingly incorporated into P.H. Miller frames, and examples can be seen in our portfolio.
Christian's favorite frames are those from Italy and Spain, and these styles heavily influence his design. However, Christian draws inspiration from many of the old European styles, especially the more flamboyant varieties.