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This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at UPR chapter.

Small and local businesses! Something we have seen trending lately, even more so after quarantine started a year ago. Lots of artists have decided to start their own mobile or online company so they can sell their creations, since it’s more feasible for the business and can help them gain more support. 

At least for Sandra Kiani, this has been the case. During the pandemic, she has strived to create a “feel-good corner” where she can “replenish energies or even sell you something,” she says. Kiani is the owner of AuraMusa, an online local art shop where she sells beautiful gem rings and other types of art such as original illustrations. She’s also a very spiritual and powerful woman that adds an affirmation and a spark of good vibes to everything she does. To understand how she does it, I sat down and spoke with her so she could explain the creative process behind AuraMusa.

What is AuraMusa?

“AuraMusa is more than just a small business. My goal for AuraMusa is to have a little slice of the Internet where people can recharge their energies and find some optimism in their lives. Right now, I’m just selling art and rings, but I would love to start posting words of affirmations and spiritual content. AuraMusa is the message I want to share with the world.”

What does it mean for you to have a local business? How did you get the idea and how did you start?

“Having a local business means trying to make myself my own boss. Not only am I trying to establish a place where I work for myself and not for others, but I am also establishing a brand. I’m making a name for myself while fostering positivity to all. So, a lot of people nowadays have small businesses, including one of my close friends! Her company is called @Tasslebycp. She is a huge inspiration! Anyways, I started AuraMusa a couple of years ago only to sell art. When that didn’t really work, I focused on other things. But in the last year, quarantine happened, and I was getting into spirituality more. Crystals are big contributors to spiritual journeys, so when I discovered that I could make rings that incorporated crystals and energies, I thought that I could maybe start up AuraMusa again. And so, I did!”

 Why AuraMusa? What does the name mean for you?

“Well, when I was picking out names, I was thinking about what I wanted the project to be. Something that involved art but also spirituality. So, I started playing around with words and an aura is the distinctive atmosphere or quality that seems to surround and be generated by a person, thing, or place. That word linked the spiritual aspect of the business. As for the rest of the name, I chose musa (the Spanish word for muse). Like the muse that an artist gets when starting a project, the inspiration. I liked both of these words and they sounded magical together so… AuraMusa it was!”

What do you create/sell? What other types of art would you like to add to your business?

“I create agate gemstone rings with two different types of colored wires. I also sell art! I do commissions and personal pieces. I want to start painting sneakers and clothes, but I just haven’t gotten around to it! I truly just want this to be a creative outlet where I share my art/jewelry/positivity with the world! So, I’m not really picky about what I end up selling or not selling.”

Sandra doesn’t remember the exact moment she started to learn about agate gemstones, but she has known about them for a while and keeps educating herself. When it’s time to create, she gets inspired and vibes out with music and other greats artists that she likes and helps her fuel her projects. It’s important for her to add affirmations in everything she does, since it’s something she wants to share with the world. 

She also believes that, when people find a place to spread love and light, they naturally gravitate towards it. This means that affirmations attract the kind of clients she wants for her business and helps her spread a daily dose of positivity to contribute to AuraMusa’s mission. 

What is the most important part of doing your work for you and how does it help you as a way of liberation?

“I think that the most important part of my work is that I am giving back to people. Every time I get positive feedback on my work, I feel amazing! The fact that people are wearing something that I created on their fingers all day, or knowing that they have my art up on their walls, is one of the best feelings in this world. I think that is the best type of liberation I could ever ask for.”

Do you have any advice for those starting with their business?

“Just do it! I know it sounds corny, but the only person stopping you is quite literally yourself. If you have a pull to create or to put something out into the world, go all in! Obviously do your research and pay your dues, but you should ultimately do whatever makes you happy. We only have one life so, again with the corny quotes, live it to the fullest!”

Although Sandra has other things to do right now and can’t dedicate the specific amount of time she wants to her business, she is aiming to start posting more, getting more creative with her jewelry, and expanding her reach with AuraMusa. 

You can take a look at her work on Instagram via @aura_musa. As we say in Puerto Rico, ¡Apoya lo local!

Itzel Rivera is an undergraduate student at the University of Puerto Rico, Río Piedras Campus. She's studying Information & Journalism with the purpose of providing people the knowledge they need to educate themselves. Itzel aspires to execute her profession, values and principles in a way that it impacts society. Also, she loves lifting weights, studying and doing anything that will get her closer to her dreams!