Looking for the perfect local Indy gift? Or maybe you’re looking for something to spruce up a dull space? Look no further than the Indy-based company, The Onyx Exchange, which has made it’s mark as Indianapolis’ luxury handcrafted all-natural candle brand. The onyx stone is known for it’s ability to release negative emotion, which in turn, brings good fortune and renewed personal strength. And through their all-natural products, Jarod Wilson and Shan Parker hope their products provide not only a superior all-natural product, but one that promotes relaxation and positive energy. It’s the perfect exchange.
Almost five years ago, Wilson and Parker were tinkering around with a home project of cutting down wine bottles and realized it’s possible business potential. The two created their first brand, Green Illuminations, while also holding down their full-time jobs. This same home project evolved into handmade all-natural candles in the bottoms of wine bottles. The up-cycled wine bottle candles soon became majority of their business and in 2014, Green Illuminations transformed into The Onyx Exchange.
“Onyx is “part time” for both of us, but I can assure you at the holidays it becomes two full time jobs!” Parker explained.
The Onyx Exchange products burn true to the brand’s mission: create all-natural products. All the merchandise is handmade from natural and recycled ingredients and put together right here in Indianapolis. The line includes six different candle collections, soaps, lotions and cologne. Their products are currently sold on-line and can be found in 25 different shops in nine different states along with one international location. If you’re thinking local check them out at Posh Petals, Homespun, American Beauty, Enroute Spa, Salon 06, James Dant and Toolbox Men’s Store.
The brand’s most popular product is the wine bottle candle and my personal favorite. The all-natural soy wax sits in the bottom of an up-cycled wine bottle sourced from a vendor, who employs individuals transitioning back into the work force. The wine bottle colors vary depending on each shipment and all have a wooden wick that if you listen closely enough provides a whisper of a crackle while burning. It’s the perfect product to compliment any space. The scents are all refreshing and relaxing. And there’s something for everyone. This summer’s most popular scent is Sweet Avocado (floral hints & avocado). My personal favorites include Onyx No. 1 (vanilla, orange, clove, sandalwood & amber) and Bourbon (fruity scents, vanilla & bourbon). Parker’s current favorite is Caprese (basil & tomato leaf), but keep an eye out for one of the brand’s most popular scents: Winter Berry (cinnamon, clove, cranberry & bayberry) which was a fast seller last winter.
The Onyx Exchange also provides a unique opportunity for fans of the brand through their Candle Makers Pop Up Bars, which occur every three months. These experiences allow consumers to meet the brains behind the brand and create their own unique personal candle. The pop up bars are held at Homespun. It’s an easy process: you select your candle size, select the scents you would like to mix from the 35 offered and assemble the candle. Don’t worry, if you’re unsure of how to combine the many scents, Wilson and Parker will guide you through the experience. The next pop up bar is scheduled for August 29th and you can RSVP on facebook! The brand also offers private candle maker bar experiences that are perfect for birthday parties, wine nights and bridal showers. You can learn more about hosting your own candle maker bar on their website.
“You meet someone randomly who is familiar with your product and you are reminded that people are using your product every single day, and loving it, that really brings it all back full circle and makes you put a lot of pride in what you’re making,” explained Parker.
The Onyx Exchange is still growing fast. Wilson and Parker are currently working on their 2015 holiday road map to keep up on the high consumer demands. The brand will also be featured in an upcoming issue of the Indianapolis fashion magazine, Pattern. And the brand will be included in Visit Indy’s Fall hospitality sets. It’s a wonderful local Indianapolis brand that helps Hoosier pride burn bright.
Photo Credits: Little Robot Photography
Visit their website: The Onyx Exchange
Written By: Warren Cangany