Being made redundant after 13 years of working in a Merseyside based Charity, Lucy Antal found it very difficult to find a new job at the age of 45.
|Photo: Jessica Lang Photography|
With experience in managing a cookery school and office systems for a group of restaurants and bars, this became the recipe for the Liverpool resident to move towards self-employment. ‘People have always told me that I should be making my living through food… It seemed like an opportunity to give it a go. I have nothing to lose!’
Following her redundancy, Lucy attended a ‘Become a More Confident You’ course at The Women’s Organisation. ‘I think it’s fair to say my confidence took a knock following the redundancy after 13 years in my former job.’
A confidence boost is just what she needed to regain her appetite and move forward. This is when she became aware of the free business start-up support The Women’s Organisation also offered.
‘The Women’s Organisation gave me business startup advice and the opportunity to attend a range of relevant courses. They were very supportive generally of what I’m trying to achieve.’ She continued: ‘It’s also been good to meet other women in a similar situation to share advice.’
|Photo: William Lyons|
‘Grab Your Spoon’ is the name under which food-lover Lucy already tweets and blogs about her passion for food, so it made sense that her business should adopt the same name. Grab Your Spoon produces a range of handmade preserves, jams, chutneys, relishes and marmalades.
‘I have a stall each month at Lark Lane Farmers market and have already got two outlets stocking my preserves – The Liverpool Cheese Shop and HomeBaked Anfield, and I’m currently talking to a third in the City Centre.’
|Photo: William Lyons|
Lucy and her products have quickly become a big hit, scooping a Gold award in the World’s Original Jam Awards for her Seville Marmalade.
In a recent press release, Awards and Festival organiser Jane Hasell-McCosh commented: ‘Congratulations to Grab Your Spoon on their award. It is one of a growing army of small artisan producers preserving one of our great British traditions.’
The next step for Grab Your Spoon is to launch an online shop and spread her passion for food far and wide. The self-confessed foody also aims to branch out and make additional products, such as handmade fudge and wedding favours. To further compliment her business, she also hopes to develop her writing to provide another income stream into the business.
|Photo: Williams Lyons|
Lucy was extremely grateful for any assistance she received whilst starting up. Her advice to other budding business women would be to ‘research lots! The information is out there. Accept any free help offered, even if you think you know all there is to know about a particular subject, you always learn something. Be open and kind. Share your knowledge and support other small businesses.’
For Lucy, business is all about the creativity and pleasing customers. ‘I love that the business is mine! No seriously, I love the creativity of cooking and I get great satisfaction from people enjoying my product.’
If you’re ready to ‘Grab Your Spoon’ and taste Lucy’s delicious range of handmade preserves, visit www.grabyourspoon.com or you can reach her at info@grabyourspoon
Twitter – @grabyourspoon and Facebook – facebook/grabyourspoon
And if Lucy’s story has made you hungry to take your idea to the next level, contact The Women’s Organisation for more information on the free business start-up advice, training and grant package available. 0151 706 8111 / email@example.com www.thewomensorganisation.org.uk
Portrait photo by Jessica Lang Photography
By Beckie Kinsella