A jewellery maker has been able to add some sparkle to her new business thanks to some funding.

Beatrix Tilley, 19, has been awarded £1,850 from the Dorset Community Foundation to allow her to invest in her jewellery business, Beatrix Ella.

The SWEF enterprise grant, awarded by the Foundation, helps young people aged 18 to 30 who are running or about to start their own business - with costs such as tools, stock and rent.

The grant has enabled Beatrix to launch her own website and create a more professional studio to work in at home, as well as buying new equipment.

Beatrix said: “My mum came across the SWEF grant but I didn't originally want to apply because I don't really like video calls and I knew a video interview was part of the process.

“It was quite a relief to get the grant because it meant that I could follow through all these ideas I had that I wanted to achieve, that I couldn't before because it's such a long process, making a little bit of money and then reinvesting it.”

Dorset Echo: Beatrix working on her jewellery at home Beatrix working on her jewellery at home (Image: Supplied)

Beatrix has always had a fascination with making her own jewellery but it was only after finding sea glass on the beach while walking to her dad’s house in Lyme Regis that she had the idea of using it in her own designs.

A job on a jewellery maker’s market stall in Bridport then gave her the opportunity to sell some of her designs.

Beatrix said: “She was kind enough let me have a little section with my jewellery and people liked my designs, so then I decided to have my own little table with my bead designs and my sea grass design.

“I started making money from it which I used to reinvest and I kind of just built up and up and up from there.”

She added: “Originally I was polishing everything by hand so I could only really make five pieces a day and then I wouldn't have much to sell at the market.

“One of the tools I bought was a tumbler that polishes everything so now I'm able to make a good amount of things and make more money to build up my business.

She now produces around 70 pieces of jewellery a week to sell via her website or at markets in the Bridport area.

Beatrix added: “It’s a full time job now.

“I hope to move out of home soon and into my own place with a studio. I’m so glad that I applied for the grant because if I hadn't got that I would be like a year behind where I am now.”

Find out more about SWEF grants and how to apply at dorsetcommunityfoundation.org

See Beatrix’s designs at beatrixella.com or search for Beatrix Ella on Instagram.