When Busselton jewellery designer Emma Meakes decided to branch out on her own she undertook a TAFE course on starting a new business to help provide some direction.
The course gave Ms Meakes the skills she needed to look for an opportunity in the market and establish her own small business Flux and Facet in Dunsborough.
"The course was about learning how to setup a new small business and analyse the market to look at what the competition is doing," Ms Meakes said.
"It helps you nail down whether it is a viable idea or not.
"The participants all started the course with an idea that we were working on then refined it from a starting point of view."
Ms Meakes had been working for John Miller Design in Yallingup for nine years and while she was happy there she wanted to be challenged more and go out on her own.
"While I was doing the course I realised there was a lot of retail out there, and retail is hard with a lot of people doing amazing things already," she said.
"We were really encouraged to look at our strengths and weaknesses, I am good with people and I am a great teacher, so that was my unique position.
"I saw an opportunity to be able to share what I love with other people which is how the business came about."
I saw an opportunity to be able to share what I love with other people which is how the business came about.Flux and Facet owner Emma Meakes
Ms Meakes now runs small group workshops where she is able to give people a taste of making their own piece of jewellery.
"It is low pressure and fun, everyone leaves with something beautiful," she said.
"People really surprise themselves, they come in unsure if they will be able to create something nice and leave with big smiles and a real sense of satisfaction that they have made something tangible that looks like a real piece of jewellery.
"People are coming into see me from all across the South West, it has been great and a lot of fun."
Participating in the TAFE course has also earned Ms Meakes' Busselton Campus Student of the Year in South Regional TAFE's recent annual awards for high achievement in 2020.
Ms Meakes was nominated for her outstanding work and high level of commitment and dedication, allowing her to complete the course to an exceptional level.
Her work was consistently outstanding, and she demonstrated strong leadership, entrepreneurial spirit and innovation.
South Regional TAFE managing director Darshi Ganeson paid tribute to Ms Meakes for her hard work, dedication and application.
Ms Ganeson also made special mention of the many generous award sponsors, including local industries, businesses and individuals, and thanked them for their ongoing support for students through funding prizes and scholarships.
To find out more about Flux and Facet please visit fluxandfacet.com/.