Today’s Blogfester is #17 Juliette Beaumont who has a jewellery business, JMB Silver. There’s a bit of a story to me being able to read and share Jules’ story – my computer said no! But it’s all sorted now and all the better for it, no doubt.
My name is Juliette “Jules” Beaumont and I live in South East UK, in a seaside town called Herne Bay. I have been inspired to write this blog following an invitation from Judith Morgan.
Judith has recently published a book called Your Biz Your Way and she’s putting together a Blogfest on her website inviting solopreneurs/small business owners to blog about how they are running their businesses in their own ways and opening up a dialogue which she will run on her website by commenting on my post and on others.
So when I saw the invitation, it got me thinking – do I do anything differently in my business? At first, I thought perhaps not but then I realised that actually I am doing things completely differently.
Little bit of history
I am 42 years old and went straight into nursing when I left school. I worked for 22 years in the NHS and I loved my profession. However, in September 2016 the stress of the job role and current difficulties working in the NHS took its toll and I had to leave for the sake of my own health.
For anyone who has ever been in this situation, I am sure they will understand how scary this was. The following went round in my head for months and months:
- I have always been a nurse
- I have no other skills
- I am too old to retrain
- I won’t cope with stress ever again
- I will never get well again
In early 2016, a friend of mine who is a silversmith asked me to be her guinea pig – she gave me a day’s tuition in her workshop and I made some simple silver jewellery.
That was it – I was hooked!
I had no idea where this would lead, I was full of self doubt and worries but what I did know was that I enjoy creating things, I love silver and gemstones and yes – the prospect was scary but it was also exciting.
One of my many concerns was my complete lack of traditional artist/design training. I hadn’t studied art at college or university and I felt that this would go against me and make it impossible to become a jeweller at all. I also had zero knowledge about setting up and running a business.
Despite my worries and with encouragement from close family and friends, I enrolled on a Silver Jewellery Diploma course at The London Jewellery School in Hatton Garden in London. This began in September 2017. Alongside this, I am currently in the middle of an 8-week Business Bootcamp Course specifically for the jewellery business, Jewellery School Online. I can’t tell you how exciting it is being taught in the heart of Jewellery Mecca that is Hatton Garden.
Basically, I have not looked back.
If you told me back in September 2016 what I have achieved 17 months later I honestly would not have believed you!
Fast-forward to February 2018
- I work from home in my workshop which I have built up with my own tools and equipment over the year
- I launched my own business – JmB Silver in October 2017
- I was awarded Distinction in Term 1 of my jewellery course
- I am my own boss
- I have achieved a better work/life balance
- I have joined a local artist/designer collective called Made in Herne Bay
- I am a blogger and have joined a local blogging group
- I have just completed my first-ever exhibition in a local art gallery, which was successful
- I have just been asked to stock my work in a local shop
- I have my own website which I built myself and am building up sales and customers
- I am a whiz on social media and I am running my own Instagram and Facebook business pages
- I have 3 craft fairs and a summer festival booked for 2018
- I am a happy and more confident person
- So despite my complete lack of traditional training, I think I am proof that it is possible to change direction, to do things differently and to be successful.
If I have any advice for anyone who thinks they can’t change their career – believe in yourself – it is possible if you have the passion and drive to do it!
I am so happy we got there in the end. As we both know, tech challenges are all part of being happily and successfully self-employed so thanks to you for that reminder!
Congratulations first of all on making that leap, that must have been quite scary after all that time. And even better that you’ve gone from one type of profession to one that is so completely different. I love all the creative people I work with and many of the issues you raise above are the questions they gave me to answer in my book including the ones about age, uncertainty and lack of traditional artist training.
I agree with you, that is a MASSIVE achievement in such a short period of time and it is that realisation that encourages us onward, isn’t it? Thank you for the inspiration your piece will provide to other startups and newbies reading this on your online real estate or mine. And thanks for taking part when we didn’t even know one another! We do now and that’s just one of the beauties of our online world.