South Shields woman becomes her own boss after redundancy blow

Joyella Jewellery's Fiona Grant with business advisor Nicky Gray.
Joyella Jewellery's Fiona Grant with business advisor Nicky Gray.

An admin worker who was made redundant from her job after nine years has launched a new career in jewellery making.

Fiona Grant had been creating items of jewellery for the past five years after taking the craft up as a hobby.

She had toyed with the idea of launching her own business, with only fear of the unknown standing in her way.

Being made redundant was the push the 46-year-old finally needed.

Now she is the proud owner of Joyella Jewellery, which makes bespoke items.

Miss Grant, from South Shields, said: “I had been making jewellery for quite a few years, and when the redundancies came about it was the push I needed to look at setting up my own business.”

She was helped in her new venture with a grant from the New Enterprise Allowance Programme after inquiring at the JobCentre about her options.

She also received support from business advisor Nicky Gray, enabling her to launch her business in July.

“I knew about jewellery making but had no idea about business and marketing. Nicky has helped me a lot and I am now heading in the right direction.

“It really was a learning curve for me, but I am so glad I made the decision to have my own business.”

Miss Grant has been selling her jewellery at craft fairs and also has a website and Facebook page showcasing items for sale.

She also takes requests from people who have a particular design in mind.

To create her items she uses sterling silver, Swarovski crystals and pearls and natural gems.

Miss Grant added: “Each item is handmade, so is unique. Even if I make a few of the similar product there will be slight differences.

“I try to design jewellery which will not go out of fashion.”

For information on Joyella Jewellery visit www.joyellajewellery.co.uk or visit the Facebook page Joyella Jewellery

• The New Enterprise Allowance Programme supports those over the age of 18 who are unemployed and in receipt of jobseeker’s benefit.

It offers eight weeks of support to create a business plan and apply for funding needed.

Once approved, it will provide 26 weeks of payments to help to build and establish the business.

For information call Nicky Gray at Tedco on 0191 516 6102.