Dress Like a Boss

If there is one person who best reflects the true essence of power dressing, it would be Arpana Mophal. Headstrong yet grounded, the Managing Director of Trends Advertising and Marketing Consultancy, shares her views on dressing smartly to work and more.
By Sachitra Gurung

What defines Arpana Mophal?
Definition is a conclusion; I am still in the ‘process’, exploring and learning – I am a very determined person when it comes to work and passionate about my undertakings.

How did you get involved in advertising and event management?
My last employment was with an Indian based event management company in Kathmandu and I was heading operations. In the process of organizing and managing over a couple of years, the results were promising. Then my husband thought I was ready for a venture of my own. With his encouragement, Trends happened in 2000. Advertising was an interest and events my passion. And as they say, when things are meant to be, everything falls into place—Trends was my place.

What is your future plan for your business?
SETTING-TRENDS (laughs). I don’t intend on setting goals ’cause it’s very confining; I would like to share the best from my experience and reflect the right example of professionalism. Quality and quantity are two aspects that drive my inner force.

Why did you choose to specialize in wedding management?
Someone needed to start somewhere and I am a hardcore romantic at heart. I love happy new beginnings; who doesn’t? We started 18 years back contributing/forming an idea full of trials and errors. The future for us is all about setting standards. Our market now accepts the idea of handing over their most prioritized/important events to professionals. People are open to new ideas and suggestions. It's a great moment to explore possibilities, providing the best that is available, quality of work, professionalism and execution to the “T”. Creating bigger demands, thanks to social media, it has helped tremendously over a significantly small amount of time. I am positive that this market will only grow, to create a significant rise in the economic sector.

Event management is a very hectic and stressful kind of work. How do you manage to dress so effortlessly?
Groomed skin, a well-tailored-good fit garment, beautiful shoes; reflection of clothing paired to your comfort, showcasing confidence; that to me is power dressing.

Your wardrobe essentials for office…
''It’s a paradox"—a closet full of clothes, but nothing to wear. I have a more relaxed approach to dress codes; you will pretty much see me in salwar suits Monday to Thursday. I save my casual threads for the remaining days— the basic in formals such as jeans, pastel shirts, a roomy bag, neutral flats, low heel pumps, watch and statement accessories. I like to stash my essentials under my desk to change into whenever my look needs a lift.

You must be attending many official events. What is the secret behind looking stylish and professional at the same time?

I like applying forever kind of trends in an understated effect that helps me reflect being professional. I believe fashion is an ever-changing trend but style is eternal. Also adding statement accessories and a good pair of heels does the trick.

How important it is to dress up smartly for work?
I’ll be quoting Mark twain—“Clothes make the man”.
The age old phrase "first impression is the last" really applies, so it is extremely important to look good in order to feel good. Also dressing well is a form of good manners, be it at work or anywhere else; it’s an unspoken language of the mind and body.

Fashion advice you would give to people…
“Life's too short to be wearing boring clothes". Wear who you are, and if in doubt, wear black!

Who do you consider your fashion icons?

I am drawn to well-dressed people- I appreciate and applaud the effort that goes into looking good. It would be unfair and unjust to name one personality. The country we live is no less than a fashion hub! I have visited more than a dozen places but what I see in Nepal is absolutely stunning, the variation of rather from- name it and you will see it around.

Who are your favorite designers?

One should wear a brand and not otherwise, favorite would be unfair when the choices and collectables are not from one single designer. To sum it all up—Nadia Hussian, Maria B and HSY- Hassan Shaharyar Yasin are my current indulgence. I am quite in awe of our Nepali designers too.