I was introduced to the Lotus Mendes label at the Platinum Media Summer Blogger Night – and very quickly I became a fan!
Victoria Cheatham is the designer and mastermind behind Lotus Mendes, a high quality costume jewellery label. The label name takes inspiration from the Lotus flower and King Menes whose name means “fighter”. To me the label represents a mix of femininity, fierceness and strength – kind of like Beyoncé right?
When I love something I naturally want to find out more so what better way than an interview with the designer herself?
What inspired you to start making jewellery in the first place?
I have been creating and designing precious jewels for over 12 years for myself and for friends. It all started as I never wanted to be seen in the same piece as anyone else. I craved uniqueness and individualism so I would sit in my studio for hours creating and designing. I would sell one off pieces that I had made, which at the time was it was difficult given the connection and meaning - every piece of jewellery had a magical element to it.
The response to my pieces has always been amazing–creating jeweller was a force or a calling if you like for me. It is about making women feel and look amazing and that appreciating the magical element of jewellery would unleash a power within themselves. My passion is for others to feel what I felt when wearing Lotus Mendes – for all women to feel individual, unique and unstoppable.
I use my body as a blank canvas and my jewellery is like my oil paint, each day I paint a different picture using my jewels. The first piece of jewellery I ever made was long beaded earrings.
As a designer and a business woman, do you have any advice for budding designers on how to balance these skills?
I can't even explain the nonstop hard work and hours it takes to build a successful brand. You have to have an intense passion for what you do, a drive and determination that no one can break and a set vision for what you want to achieve. Secure as much knowledge and work experience as possible and continue to keep educating yourself. Remember knowledge is power.
You have had numerous high profile celebrities wear your designs thus far. Which celebrities would you love to wear your designs?
I have been blessed that many celebrities have been adorned in Lotus Mendes including Mel B, The Veronicas, Lara Bingle, Sonya Kruger and Laura Dundovic. One of the highlights was when Sonya Kruger wore the 3 Acts Foundation Necklace and Solid Ground Cuff on Big Brother and the response was completely overwhelming.
If I was choose an international celebrity to wear Lotus Mendes it would have to be Beyoncé due to her effortless style and the way she can wear layered accessories. The Lotus Mendes style is to wear many pieces at a time which is what Beyoncé can rock at any time of the day.. I can't just pick one piece as she could wear them all!
Which are your favourite pieces?
That is a hard question - it’s like being asked to pick a favourite child.
Our most iconic piece and where it all started was the Powerful Goddess Ring. I have now released it in 25 colours and more to come. My plan is to have every shade of colour in the whole world so within 5 years if you are searching for a colour for your outfit and you cannot find it anywhere you will definitely be able to find it at Lotus Mendes.
I am also in LOVE with my latest design the Opal Luxe Goddess Ring which is the first piece in the new Lotus Luxe Collection.
Which piece is the most popular with your fans?
Without question the Goddess Ring. I have customers who have the entire collection!!
2012 marked a big year for the Lotus Mendes label, what has been your highlight?
2012 was a complete world wind. I would have to say it was a CRAZY time!
Every day something new and exciting was happening and 2013 will be no different. I threw myself in the deep end and learned so much about business, manufacturing, retailing and how to run a successful label.
The response to my jewels has been amazing and I feel honoured that I am able to get up every day and be able to do what I love for a job. The development and demand for my brand and business in the past year combined with the launch of my new Luxe collection were both huge highlights.
What do you hope to achieve in 2013?
There are so many things happening right now! I hope to continue on my path to success and to continue to design pieces that my customers love and want to wear.
Where do you hope the Lotus Mendes brand will be in 5 years?
In 5 years time I would ideally love to have Lotus Mendes Concept Stores around Australia and secured strong presence in international markets.