Edna B. Turner is the Founder of Unique Lingerie Inc, Ocala – FL
She has been running this business since 2007.
At your convenience please visit our online store www.TheUniqueLingerie.com
Sandra Brown, Managing Partner of Unique Lingerie, Inc. has served Marion County and surrounding areas since 2012, as a Board-Certified Fitter of mastectomy.
Sandra’s career started 20 years ago working for Amoena, a manufacturer of mastectomy products, which included vast experience in medical billing. She attained her fitting experience with Amoena by attending training classes every chance she could and she received her certification to become a mastectomy fitter.
Her overall knowledge of product and years of training under Master Mastectomy fitters in Georgia and California after leaving Amoena speaks for itself. Her love for helping women with breast cancer drove her to become and ABC Board Certified Fitter.
In 2012 she met Edna Turner DeGeneste in Las Vegas Nevada at a symposium sponsored by Amoena. As a result, she moved to Ocala Florida and took on the position of Manager for Unique Lingerie, Inc.
Whenever a client asked Sandra how she ended up in Ocala after being born and raised in Chicago, IL, her response is “the Lord brought me here”, and it shows in the compassion she has as a Mastectomy Fitter.
Here is Edna’s interview with Ted Vayos, the publisher of the Body Magazine which is a renowned intimate apparel TRADE magazine and well known among the consumers of intimate apparels across United States.
This interview was conducted in April 2019.
Ted: How did you get started in this business?
Edna: In 1973 I had joined the NYC Police Department and set out to be among the bravest women I had ever met. My female colleagues and I were pioneers setting an example that we could perform the same duties that our male counterparts performed. Soon after, I had a breast exam by my Gynaecologist and he ordered me to have biopsies of both breasts. I was frightened to death, but I follow instructions very well. After the surgery, I was informed I had fibrocystic breasts, which weren’t cancerous, but they had to remove all of the cysts, ultimately leaving me with sagging skin. Their decision was to perform what we know today as reconstruction of the breast, removing the areola’s, tightening the skin and replacing the areola’s. My recovery was in the hospital for 7 days. As many women today know, they go in for lumpectomies and mastectomies and come home the same day. Due to the surgery my breasts were never the same. In 1987 while working for the US Marshals Service, I got a call from a very close friend in Bermuda who owned a mastectomy and bra fitting store. The store needed financial help. I agreed I could help her, but I insisted that she teach me everything about the business. I requested a leave of absence from my law enforcement career and started the beginning of my professional life of mastectomy and bra fitting. My leave of absence ended with my return to New York. In 1994 I was diagnosed with Thyroid Cancer, again not knowing what to expect as far as recovery. I knew my life would have its ups and downs from then on. My US Marshals career brought me from New York to Ocala, Florida in 1999. Like many women in the United States, I found it very difficult finding a bra to fit me in Ocala, which led me to investigate the available mastectomy and bra fitting stores in the State of Florida. There were a few spread out throughout the state but nothing that specialized in professionalized fittings for all women, regardless to bra size. By 2007 I made the decision to open a small mastectomy and bra boutique very close to my home.
Ted: When did you open this retail business?
Edna: In 2007, I incorporated Unique Lingerie, Inc. and opened my first boutique with the help of my friend and confidant Zenna Morris, Owner of Sheer Pleasure in Covina, California.
Ted: Where is your current location?
Edna: Ocala, Florida (Marion County).
Ted: Please describe your store to our readers.
Edna: Our beautiful and quaint showroom and 3 private dressing rooms are unique and designed for a woman’s comfort. Ladies come to us for emotional support and expertise in fitting mastectomy products, and sensitivity to each woman’s special needs. Our post-mastectomy boutique offers a personalized, gentle, and professional service by Board Certified fitters who are qualified to find the best products for women after a mastectomy, lumpectomy, reconstruction, or implants. Women who are genetically predisposed to be imbalanced, have difficulty finding bras because of their breast size whether large or small, or who have experienced weight loss/gain, will also find much needed help at Unique Lingerie, Inc. Whether they are looking for professional consultation and fitting service, custom orders for special needs and occasions, assistance with insurance filing, or simply information from someone they trust, Unique Lingerie, Inc. is the one place where you can find all this under one roof.
Ted: What other retail businesses and services are in your immediate area?
Edna: Dillard’s, Macys, JC Penney, Victoria Secrets, DSW, Old Navy, Dick’s Sporting Goods, Chico’s and Talbots.
Ted: Do any other local retailers send customers to your store?
Edna: Yes they do! We are very well known in the community by the big box stores. They are happy to recommend their customers to us when they are unable to provide them with what they need.
Ted: Do you have any competition in the area?
Edna: Yes. There is a very well know pharmacy in the area that provides Durable Medical service. There is also another post-mastectomy store approximately 20 miles east of my location.
Ted: Do you have an internet website?
Edna: Yes – at this time it is for informational purposes. We are working on launching a new updated website later this year. (It has launched now and you are already there reading this interview on our e-commerce website)
Ted: What makes your store special?