We had the good fortune of connecting with Kristi Moon and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Kristi, we’d love to hear more about how you thought about starting your own business?

My journey as a designer started over 15 years ago and I found myself struggling with my voice and identifying my aesthetic as a designer.

Since there isn’t a long line of African American designers to look up to, I have to say that believing in myself and my talent has been a process through personal growth.

The fashion industry hasn’t been the most inclusive either, so even though I am inspired by many different aspects of fashion, life and culture, my design aesthetic was automatically stereotyped as “urban street wear” which initially offended me.

I decided to embrace that term, which is why I now consider myself the “Urban Minimalist”.

With my brand, Age of Aquarius, my intention has been to follow my heart, be authentic and create timeless wearable pieces that make women feel good and look good, while still doing my part to reduce my carbon footprint as a designer.

My ultimate goal and purpose is to build a sustainable American lifestyle brand that manufactures and sources materials here in the United States, but sells globally.

So recycling, repurposing and committing to only creating sustainable fashion, as early as 2005, in order to build a socially conscious fashion brand, hasn’t been the easiest task.

The good news is that now in 2021, it’s more common to have a conversation on how the fashion industry and humanity as a whole continues to impact global warming and climate change.

Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?

For the last 6 years I have been focusing on building the accessory side of my brand and designing inspirational bracelets, with healing gemstones and motivational charms. 

This collection is created to inspire and empower  –  FAITH + HOPE + LOVE & COURAGE.

In 2018 and 2019 I was a featured artist at several Raw Artist showcases here in Los Angeles, where I sold my jewelry.

My bracelets were also seen in Vogue’s online magazine Conde’ Nast Traveller, this year in the April and May 2021 issues.

And you can shop this collection online at aoajewels.com.

I do currently work a fulltime day job, but I’m really excited to be working on a capsule collection of eco-friendly separates that will be available online and in boutiques soon.

Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.

My favorite things to do in LA revolve around eating, because I’m a foodie, I like drinking wine, going to concerts and lounging at the beach.

There are so many great restaurants in the city, but in the summer I tend to eat a lot of seafood, like sushi, poke bowls, ceviche and fish tacos, plus I also love fruit, cruciferous vegetables, and drinking Sangria in the summer.

One of my favorite spots that I’ve been eating at for over 20 years is called Malibu Seafood, which is right on PCH.
The beach is directly across the street, so we would grab a bite to eat and then relax, recharge and chill at the beach.
It’s a hot spot so there’s always a line, even before the pandemic, but it’s worth the wait.
I usually order their Ahi Tuna Burger and fries, with a side of coleslaw, which is always delish!

I love going to concerts at the Hollywood Bowl, so that would be on the itinerary depending on who is performing.

Who else deserves some credit and recognition?

My family and friends have been the biggest supporters and motivators in my life!

I am so grateful and blessed to have the amount of love and support that I do.

Like everyone, my journey has been up and down, but because of my discipline, regular spiritual practices, meditation, self awareness and faith, I always find a way to get back focused and keep moving forward…

I also believe in scriptures, astrology, numerology, angels and signs to guide me…

As far as books, these are the top 10 that have inspired me.

The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho

The 4 Agreements by Don Miguel Ruiz

A Course in Miracles

Thrive by Arianna Huffington

Trust – Mastering the Four Essential Trusts by Iyanla Vanzant

The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle

Untethered Soul by Michael Singer

Destiny by Bishop T.D. Jakes

Silent Power by Stuart Wilde

Rising Strong by Brene Brown

My greatest lesson that I’ve learned on my spiritual journey is how important it is to be authentic, by being true to myself, and not seeking outside approval, which can be challenging as a creative spirit, in an industry that is all about beauty on the surface and material things.

Now in my 40’s I discovered that trusting my instincts and intuition and not trying to compete with others, is the foundation to being successful.

One of the most influential and inspirational people on this planet to me is Oprah Winfrey.

Not only is she also an Aquarius, but she has introduced me and millions of others to some of these authors and books through her tv show Super Soul Sunday, which focuses on creativity, consciousness, mindfulness, spirituality and becoming the best versions of ourselves!

And anyone who knows me personally, is very well aware of my admiration and respect for Jay-Z.

His journey from poverty to wealth, by being true to himself, believing in his talent and trusting his instincts, motivates me to keep going and to never give up!

And the 3 Fashion Designers that inspire me the most are the late, great Karl Lagerfeld, Stella McCartney and Ralph Lauren.

Website: www.aoajewels.com

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/aoajewelry/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/AOAJewels/

Nominate Someone: ShoutoutLA is built on recommendations and shoutouts from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you or someone you know deserves recognition please let us know here.