Jasper & Onyx Jewelry is a Baton Rouge-based business that creates handmade, one of a kind jewelry while raising money for those in need.
Katie Stepleton says she was inspired to start creating jewelry in college as a way to make some extra cash. She and her mom were very crafty when she was a child, so creating the jewelry came naturally.
She stopped making jewelry for a few years after she entered the workforce, but then Stepleton decided to begin creating again as a way to raise money for mission trips at her place of work, Bethany Church.
“It’s been a launching pad [for the mission trips],” Stepleton said. “It’s for a good cause, but it’s also a great creative outlet and stress relief for me.”
Stepleton says she never thought of herself as someone who could go on mission trips, but through the success of her business, she was able to travel to Sierra Leone and Honduras and is planning trips to Nicaragua and Africa for next year.
In addition to helping fund mission trips, Jasper & Onyx released a black and gold line called NOLA which benefited the new Bethany Church campus being created in New Orleans.
“It’s a way to give back,” Stepleton said. “I don’t always keep a lot of the proceeds. It’s always going to something.”
When it comes to designing her jewelry, Stepleton likes to incorporate current trends and watch what her fashion forward friends are wearing. She says a few years ago, she focused on the statement necklaces that were popular, but now statement earrings are the latest trend. While a big part of her business is making sure her jewelry is in style, she also aims to keep jewelry affordable and accessible to everyone.
Stepleton buys very little of her products in bulk, so most of her pieces are one of a kind. She finds a lot of the pieces she uses for her jewelry in local bead shops and on Etsy.
Jasper & Onyx can be found on Instagram at @jasperandonyxjewelry and Facebook. Products can also be found at the Local Pop-Up at Perkins Rowe until Nov. 23 and at White Light Night in front of Soji: Modern Asian on Nov. 22