Veronica Sheaffer is a fashion designer best known for her debut on “Project Runway,” and her spring/summer 2023 collection titled “Something New” is every party girl’s dream bridal wardrobe. Pieces from the collection were available to view and purchase at a preview party hosted by Noa Brides, a bridal shop in Omaha, on Dec. 1.
As a teenager, Sheaffer didn’t have the funds to purchase elaborate pieces of clothing. So, she took matters into her own hands and taught herself how to sew from sewing patterns from the ‘60s and ‘70s.
“I was always drawn to old movies, and I loved historical clothing,” Sheaffer said. “I was especially really fascinated by this collection of old Life magazines my dad had. I would spend hours studying what everyone was wearing.”
Sheaffer started her fashion brand, Veronica Sheaffer Apparel Group, after her debut on season 18 of “Project Runway.”
“My biggest takeaway from the show is to be more confident about my work and to not beat myself up,” Sheaffer said. “I am a very thoughtful designer, so I need time to work through things and that’s okay.”
The “Something New” collection features voluminous tulle skirts, white biker shorts, veils with tulle hearts and white crop tops.
“I worked in bridal for many years, independently, but I wanted this collection to be different, so I focused more on second looks rather than the main wedding dress,” Sheaffer said. “The collection is something wilder, a bit more party girl, especially after the pandemic when everyone is eager to let loose and party.”
The first dress Sheaffer made for the collection was an updated version of a dress from her spring 2021 clothing line. According to Sheaffer, after re-inventing the dress, she knew she had to create a versatile, modern collection that can be worn during and after the wedding ceremony.
“We called the dress the Tidal because it’s like a wave going over the body,”Sheaffer said. “We added the underskirt so brides can wear a full-length dress to the wedding and then shorten it for the reception. Then, after the wedding, the bride can change into a tiny puffball white tulle dress that we also have in the collection.”
According to Sheaffer, the Veronica Sheaffer Apparel Group wouldn’t be the brand it is today if she had never met co-founder and best friend Molly Marcucci.
Marcucci first met Sheaffer when the designer altered her wedding dress. Marcucci said she didn’t like the material of the original dress, so Sheaffer offered to make her an entirely new wedding dress.
“When I met Veronica, I absolutely fell in love with her. But I have a lot of friends in the wedding industry, so I wanted to be cautious, and I didn’t want to be that bride that didn’t understand it was a business relationship and not a friendship,” Marcucci said. “I tried to play it very cool. Then, one night after my wedding, I ran into Veronica and we have literally been best friends ever since.”
The Veronica Sheaffer Apparel Group is not only about partying in fashionable attire. Sheaffer and Marcucci said the brand also focuses on empowerment and femininity. The two founders want the brand to be something that anyone can wear and feel like the main attraction.
“Veronica and I aren’t old ladies, but we are in our 40s, and we want people who are our age, or any age for that matter, to feel as if they never need to tone it down. In fact, you should turn it up,” Marcucci said. “We want everyone to feel awesome and feel like a star when they put on Veronica’s dresses.”
According to Sheaffer, her brand enables anyone to feel poised and ready for action at the altar.
“I want everyone, no matter their gender, to feel confident and sexy,” Sheaffer said. “At the end of the day everyone deserves to feel special in their clothing while at a wedding or elsewhere.”