Brian Alex Shop
Brian Kelly and Alex Janeczek
Indy Like a Local
Who are Brian and Alex?
Co-owners of The Shop, where local sports fans pick up vintage-inspired tees and sweatshirts. Check them out in Broad Ripple or Clay Terrace mall in Carmel.
Q. What was your inspiration to open The Shop?
Brian: When I started (The Shop Indy), my brand was actually called Hayes & Taylor. I’m an Ohio State fan; I’d been buying really cool sports-related T-shirts from some Ohio companies and realized nobody in Indiana was doing that with a sports focus. It started as a side business in 2011, and it just kept growing.
Q. What are some of your best-sellers?
Brian: Drink Indiana, our shirt that features Indiana shaped as a beer mug. We actually have that design trademarked. Also, our Deer Creek tee and the rest of our Deer Creek products. Those are always best sellers.
Alex: We like offering products that tie into memories, so when people see them, it takes them back in time and triggers emotions. The Indy 500 is a great example, with more than 100 years of moments and images. People see something and remember their first race or something that came out the year they were born. They’re instantly connected. We did a Blizzard of ’78 shirt this year and got to hear great stories from customers about where they were snowed in. One woman told us she went on a first date and got snowed in with the guy for two weeks! It’s great when people share those memories with us. We’re trying to help preserve those memories.
Q. Any plans to add to or evolve your product inventory in the next year or so?
Brian: We’d love to add some major licensing with the Colts and Pacers. That’s a hard get, so if anyone important is reading this, look us up!
Q. What Indiana teams/references seem to get the most love?
Brian: Our Indy 500–licensed products outsell all of our other sports-related apparel, and we really only have that stuff for April and May. People love the race and it shows. As far as our college licensing goes, no matter what happens, IU products usually sell the best. But in the past year, Purdue has really closed the gap.
Q. Why did you decide to locate in Broad Ripple, and what do you feel your store lends to that community?
Brian: We wanted to be in a cool neighborhood, and at the time, Broad Ripple was on its way back up with a decent amount of open retail vacancies. It made sense for us, and we’re very glad we did it. We’ve become part of the community and people expect to see us there. We’re the place you can always go for up-to-date sports apparel and apparel based on current events. We’re always on top of things and always have new inventory.
Q. Where do you like to hang out in Indy?
Alex: I like Broad Ripple because it’s close to the store, and I like to support the other local businesses in the neighborhood. I’ve got four kids between three months old and 6 years, so anything kid-friendly is high on my list – like Brothers Bar & Grill. Anywhere I can go have a beer and maybe they’ll stay entertained enough so I can have a second is nice. As the kids get older and we can start leaving them with a babysitter, I’m looking forward to seeing more concerts at The Vogue. Usually, when we get out now, we’re limited to an hour and a half or so for dinner.
Q. Where do you like to hang out in Broad Ripple? Or elsewhere in town?
Brian: My go-to Broad Ripple spot is Triton Tap. Those guys are great, and it’s the best patio in Broad Ripple. Twenty Tap. Fat Dan’s for the Wells St. burger in SoBro. So good. And Big Lug Canteen in Nora. Great beers, great atmosphere, and the boneless wings are insane.
Q. Where do you like to take out-of-town guests to give them an authentic Indianapolis experience?
Alex: I like to recommend Fat Dan’s. You’re going to be stuffed when you’re done eating. Hit up some of the local breweries. Tomlinson Tap Room is a great place to get a good selection of local beers. Go walk around Mass Ave or Fountain Square and check out the hole-in-the-wall places
Q. What is your go-to food/drink destinations in Indy?
Brian: Mesh. The menu is always changing, but I’ve always loved that spot.
Q. Fill in the blank: Every visitor to Indy must _____.
Alex: If you have kids, you’ve got to go to The Children’s Museum, especially now that they’ve added the [Riley Children’s Health] Sports Legends Experience. It’s worth the price of admission; you can spend the whole day there inside and out.
Brian: Attend the Indy 500. But if it’s not May, go to a Pacers game. Indy has the best arena in professional basketball, and there are plenty of food and drink options within a block or two.