Meet Moneca McLean, Owner of Red Lotus
Tell us about your business?
Red Lotus brings to Saskatoon and the surrounding area, a stunning European clothing line, post-surgery garments, world leading breast forms and symmetry products, wigs, scarves, hats, yoga/meditation accessories, and giftware. Although our clothing and products are designed for all women, Red Lotus specializes in women who have been diagnosed with breast cancer, women who have had mastectomy, lumpectomy, breast reduction, augmentation surgery, and/or women in transition who require the use of breast forms and symmetry products.
How did you get started?
I worked in healthcare for 8 years prior to going into business. Through the company’s re-organization, my position was eliminated in 2014. It was then that I began reflecting on where/what I was going to do moving forward as a career. During that time of reflection, I set up a criteria for myself that consisted of 3 items:
Whatever I decided to do moving forward, it must be something:
- that I feel very passionate about
- where I can make a positive difference in the lives of people
- that will provide financial stability for my family
From there I started reflecting on my life and experiences and exactly ‘what’ those things could possibly be and Red Lotus very quickly became an idea, then a plan, and now a reality.
What inspires you?
I was inspired to open Red Lotus through my own personal experience of supporting women close to me who required the use of breast forms. Through witnessing their journey, my desire to open a boutique that was warm, tranquil, fun, compassionate and inspiring became my mission. I was determined to provide women the ability to shop in a retail environment where they have access to a beautiful selection of clothing that is fashionable, fun, sexy, and (of course) comfortable! My goal is to provide women the opportunity to feel confident and leave my shop carrying a higher positive body image!
What is your idea of a Modern Woman?
My idea of a modern woman is a woman who walks to the beat of her own drum, who is confident in who she is and confident in her abilities. She makes a conscious choice to positively contribute to herself, her family and to her community regardless of career or finances.
What tips can you give to aspiring women entrepreneurs?
Whatever it is that you decide to do be sure it is something that feeds your passion. If you are wishy-washy in any way don’t do it! When you are consumed so much that you are never more than 5 minutes between thinking/planning/imagining it – you’re meant to do it! Know that it IS going to happen and do your homework…all of it!
What is one piece of advice you would give yourself looking back?
In those moments of doubt when I was stressed and second guessing my decision to open a business, I would have said to myself, “Relax and Let Go – it’s meant to happen” and it all works out in the end.
What is in the future for Red Lotus?
Red Lotus will continue to establish itself in Saskatoon and Saskatchewan as the only business in the province to offer women the complete Amoena of Germany clothing line, mastectomy/symmetry and meditation/yoga accessories.
What would we find you doing in your free time?
My free time is spent with my family! I have a wonderful partner of 12 years and 3 children; a 26 yr old daughter, a 23 year old son and a 20 year old daughter! They are the loves of my life and spending time with them is always my priority!
Who is someone that you find is a role model for women in business?
A woman who I have always admired is Maya Angelou. Her personal story of triumph over her diverse and unstable upbringing to becoming one of the most profound women in literature is incredibly inspiring.
Do you think having a mentor is valuable both while you're starting out and even after you are more experienced?
I believe having a mentor before, during, and after you open your business is valuable. I had the support of Women Entrepreneurs of Saskatchewan throughout my process and I continue to access their support and services today. They are crucial in my success.
Do you feel a strong sense of community among business woman and female entrepreneurs in Saskatoon and in Saskatchewan?
I believe there are avenues for women in business to meet. As I am early on in my business I have not met these women but plan on increasing my attendance at events, seminars and socials to build my network.
Visit the beautiful and serene Red Lotus at #170 – 3020 Preston Ave, Saskatoon. We are proud to have Moneca and her team as a Gold Sponsor at The Modern Woman Show & Expo at Prairieland Park April 16th & 17th. Not only will their experienced and trained staff be there with their products but you can also see their clothing line and jewellery on the runway Saturday April 16th at 7:00 p.m.
Interview by Mandi Brown
Photo of Moneca courtesy of deMo Photography