Gateway: Living

New online service provides customized life solutions

Intuitive Alchemy owner and operator Rhonda Riegel assembles a gift box in her Gig Harbor home Tuesday morning.
Intuitive Alchemy owner and operator Rhonda Riegel assembles a gift box in her Gig Harbor home Tuesday morning. lgiles@gateline.com

After discovering an ability to help others, Gig Harbor resident Rhonda Riegel launched a new business called Intuitive Alchemy in January — an online subscription service unlike any other.

Intuitive Alchemy is a positivity grounded business that provides customers with products such as sage, abalone shells, crystals and tarot cards, all of which aim to help people that may be trying to find new jobs, need pick-me-ups, or simply want to enjoy the scent of candles.

Riegel, whose profession is graphic design, now operates out of her home, where she receives orders online and then uses her intuition to combine items in boxes intended to help customers feel that they can take control of their lives and follow their dreams.

“Whatever it is you’re dreaming about, I help make that happen,” said Riegel, 47. “I want to create an experience for people who get the box. I want them to have meaning to each person.”

Customers place orders on Riegel’s site, intuitivealchemy.cratejoy.com, and then boxes are shipped to her clients’ homes each month. While most orders are placed by other residents of Gig Harbor, Riegel also ships boxes around the world.

Long before she developed the idea for Intuitive Alchemy, Riegel was a life coach who helped others achieve their goals and create positive outlooks.

In 2012, Riegel became an International Coach Academy (ICA) Certified Professional Life Coach.

“Graduation required 100 hours of coaching others and 20 hours of professionals listening to you coach,” said Riegel. “It was a rigorous class.”

But soon, Riegel said she wanted to take her business one step further.

I want to create an experience for people who get the box. I want them to have meaning to each person.

Rhonda Riegel, owner of Intuitive Alchemy

Riegel said she didn’t know what that next step would be until both of her parents died within a year of each other. While that was a difficult time, Riegel said it served as her biggest wake-up call — and her biggest inspiration.

In July 2014, Riegel decided to move from Silicon Valley, Calif. to Gig Harbor, seeking a slower pace and more room to explore her creativity — and she found it.

And now, two years later, Riegel has combined her love of graphic design with her love of life coaching, all leading to the establishment of Intuitive Alchemy.

Riegel’s many years of work experience in a range of jobs that include positions in marketing, management and freelance graphic design have helped prepare her for this latest endeavor.

For example, Riegel creates the designs for Intuitive Alchemy’s boxes and other business materials. Currently, Riegel also works in the marketing department of a Puget Sound-based manufacturing firm. But in the spare time she has, she works on Intuitive Alchemy and makes future plans.

One day, Riegel hopes to open a brick-and-mortar store in the Gig Harbor area, which would allow clients to visit for in-person readings, coaching, or pick up their custom-ordered boxes.

“I would want the shop to be accessible and friendly,” Riegel said as she shared her visions for the future. “I would want it to be a place where people can learn freely and openly about themselves.”

Ming Chee, 52, a friend of Riegel’s for more than nine years, has ordered boxes from Intuitive Alchemy for herself and as gifts for others.

I think her boxes are very magical.

Ming Chee, Intuitive Alchemy customer

“I think her boxes are very magical,” Chee said.

In addition to fulfilling orders and life coaching, Riegel also plans themes for future subscription boxes.

January’s theme was “New Beginnings,” while February’s was “Self-Love.” For the March box, the theme will be “Expansion.”

Even though each box has a theme, Riegel adds a personal touch. In each box, she supplies a card with a personalized reading for the customer.

“I believe customers have the power to change their lives if they want to,” said Riegel. “I want to meet them where they are. I want to help them in any way I can.”

Allison Needles, a Covington-based freelance writer and member of MediaLab at Pacific Lutheran University, can be reached at needleal@plu.edu.

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