Imagine this is your typical workday: you while away the hours in the Women’s collection at Bergdorf Goodman, remind yourself of tasks like “must call Marc (Jacobs) to ask what he thinks about prints for next season,” and lunch frequently with the top editors at ELLE, Vogue, or Harper’s Bazaar. Sound at all like a fantasy? Well, it’s one that Bergdorf’s Senior Women’s Fashion Director Roopal Patel gets to live out every day.

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As the chief decision maker for the women’s clothing department at the store, the stunning Indian executive dictates not only what Bergdorf’s will carry but, given her position at the helm of a fashion leader, the trends and styles shoppers will be clamoring for. To do so, she works closely  with *the* big name designers and major editors at fashion magazines, and she’s always front row in at the shows NYC, Milan, London, and Paris.

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In an interview for Asiance Magazine, Roopal offered up the following tips for women who aspire to obtain a position like hers:
1. Start at the bottom (Roopal started as an assistant at Bergdorf’s).
2. Make sure you know the history of fashion and of individual fashion houses (Roopal said she is surprised by the lack of knowledge and research candidates have about fashion when they come in for interviews).
3. Dress appropriately no matter what position you are in.
4. Get a Business or Marketing degree in order to get into Fashion Marketing, not necessarily a degree from a fashion school (Roopal herself has a degree from NYU’s Stern School of Business).

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And what does Roopal say about what makes a person stylish? She tells EGO MagazinePersonally, what I think is stylish is when a person puts her own personal signature on her look. Really, it is about the woman giving off an air of confidence that she, herself, feels beautiful. Style comes from the inside out.” Couldn’t agree more!

Roopal’s own impeccable style has a feminine, elegant sensibility that definitely takes its cues from high-fashion. She also seems to favor warm colors and jewel tones. If you dig her look, try any of these affordable gems:

And think of Roopal next time you’re walking around with one of those iconic purple bags. ;-)
~Adri

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