NEW YORK — Roopal Patel has branched out with her own consultancy.
Last fall, Patel quietly launched Roopal Patel Consulting, a full-service agency that specializes in retail and brand development, creative services, merchandising, trend forecasting and digital. She is already working with several high-profile clients, including JCP, W Hotels/CFDA Fashion Incubator, Joor, and VMT by Veronica Toub.
Patel is best known for her years at Neiman Marcus Group, where she spent more than a decade. There, she was senior fashion director, Bergdorf Goodman, before serving as senior accessory market editor for Neiman Marcus overseeing fashion-trend directions for accessories, shoes and jewelry. Prior, she was market editor at Style.com in its infant stage and worked at Club Monaco.
Most recently, she was executive fashion director at online start-up Moda Operandi, which she left last summer. Patel called her decision to launch her own consultancy “a natural progression.”
“Different companies started to approach me for different projects, and I saw an opportunity to use my past experience and knowledge to support ventures that I am passionate about, that I want to see reach their full potential,” she said.
Patel said she will incorporate her diverse experience — ranging from traditional luxury retail to digital — into her services. She added that she is looking “to collaborate and work on forward-thinking projects that will help advance fashion and retail. I would like to continue to support the new guard and emerging brands. I think it’s very important for fashion. I am also very keen to keep an eye on emerging international markets, as well as the digital space and how technology advances. I am looking to see how technology supports some of these digital initiatives that are taking place.”
Patel said that fashion is moving at a rapid pace today, requiring new skill sets. “Emerging designers have grown up and are becoming the leaders in fashion,” she said. “We are also in a period of fast fashion. Everything is accessible. Everything needs to be immediate and instant. I am curious to see how technology will begin to advance our industry and the way the consumer shops. There are new platforms and innovative ideas that are being launched every day to help connect the dots.”
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“Azzedine has been one of the biggest influences in my life. He has always been such a strong, loving, fatherly figure to me. I call him Papa. His designs are indescribably unique, they are pieces of art. He knew how to make the female form look its loveliest. I have so many memories of him; my favorite might be during my first show with him in Paris. He liked me and he wanted to help me get more work. He called all his friends at Kenzo and Comme des Garcons, and asked them to book me. They said, ‘But she can’t walk!’ And he said, ‘but she has such a great ass!' His friendship and support has been the great privilege of my career. I can't imagine life without him. Repose en paix mon Papa.” - @stephanieseymour tells @wwd. #wwdfashion (📷: @steveeichner) #alaia #azzedinealaia
Azzedine Alaïa, flanked by two of his closest friends, models Stephanie Seymour and Naomi Campbell.
He designed Seymour’s dress for her 1995 wedding to Peter Brant, and treated Campbell (who famously called him Papa), like a daughter. For more on the legendary designer, tap the link in bio. #wwdfashion #alaia #azzedinealaia