Today we’d like to introduce you to Brit Roennigke.
So, before we jump into specific questions about the business, why don’t you give us some details about you and your story.
Before starting ROEN, I spent ten years as a retail buyer in women’s fashion. Throughout these ten years, I enjoyed a number of wonderful experiences and endured some of the less-wonderful aspects that accompany the industry. It was a fun yet demanding and inflexible job. After my daughter was born, I decided to take a break from retail.
The decision was daunting, as I was letting go of something that had been a constant in my life for over a decade and jumping into the unknown. I knew I wanted a change, something that would both challenge and excite me in a new way. I have always had a passion for fragrance, specifically candles. They fill my home, and they are always my go-to gift for any occasion.
I first started making them for friends and family, and it slowly grew from there. I developed a whole new appreciation for the trial and error of candle making, it is truly a mix of art and science. L.A. Bohéme was my first signature scent. It was inspired by spring in our Glassell Park neighborhood, those days when jasmine and citrus blossoms fill the air.
Great, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
Building a business from the ground up is a very scrappy process, and I’m learning as I go. If I had known about the obstacles I would face, I might have been overwhelmed and quit up front. In fact, knowing very little at the outset worked in my favor because I wasn’t clouded by doubt.
I’ve learned that when acting as one’s own sourcing-production-customer service-shipping department and creative director, fires constantly need to be put out in unexpected places… in my case, jar shortages, wick supplier issues, label typos – the list goes on. My biggest challenge now is keeping up with demand and scaling this business. ROEN candles are all handmade in our tiny LA bungalow, and we are quickly running out of space.
Alright – so let’s talk business. Tell us about Roen Candle Company – what should we know?
At R O E N we’re all about elevating your space and creating a sense of calm wherever you are, whether it be in your home or workspace. We love the ritual of lighting a scented candle and transforming your home through fragrance. Each scent has been hand blended to create a unique collection with our most popular being Ojai Nuit. Ingredients are important to us, we use cotton wicks and chose coconut wax not only for its amazing scent throw but also for its clean burn.
In terms of milestones, we were recently featured at Le Bon Marché in Paris alongside a number of other Los Angeles based brands, which was a very proud moment for this little business. One impact of playing so many roles at once is that I find myself constantly focused on ‘what’s next’ leaving very little room to pause and celebrate the victories. The Le Bon Marché event, however, was one we took the time to truly acknowledge.
Is there a characteristic or quality that you feel is essential to success?
I would say the most important thing is a strong brand vision and true passion otherwise I would not have made it this far. You really need to love what you are doing to endure the rough patches and continue to move forward.
In the beginning, I would set achievable goals for myself, so I wouldn’t feel like I was failing. I started saying, if I can get in one store this will be a success, if I can get in five stores this will be a success, etc. We are now in 40 shops all over the US and Canada and continually growing.
- Our candle retail for $26
- Website: www.roencandles.com
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Instagram: @roencandles
- Facebook: roen candles
Victoria Wall Harris + Julia Rose Muller