Veronika Heilbrunner on the Future of Fashion, Travel Essentials, & Her Stylish Family

Catching up with one of the chicest women we know. In collaboration with Bergdorf Goodman & Bottega Veneta.

If we’re being honest, influence in the fashion world can be…fleeting. The industry thrives on novelty and newness, and what’s considered “cool” or on point shifts at the speed of light. If there’s one enduring name on the street style scene, though, it’s Veronika Heilbrunner—a former Bazaar Germany and MyTheresa editor and repeat Cov alum (you can find her Berlin pad in our book!) who can reliably be found in the kind of looks that dictate the direction we’re heading in. And so, when we learned she’d be in town to toast the new Bottega Veneta pre-fall collection at Bergdorf Goodman, we fired up our WhatsApp to arrange for a little visit before the event. (Fine; and selfishly, we wanted to get up close and personal with her assortment of Bottega goodies—a buttery lemon-yellow leather tote, the sickest oversized shades, and some pretty spectacular jewelry.) From her room at the Peninsula Hotel, here are her musings on everything from the brand’s new direction to her travel essentials.

Her must-see list while in NYC:

“I love New York very, very much. I always go to the same places, I’m really a creature of habit. So I might not know the hot spots, but I like classics. The Waverly Inn is my absolute favorite. La Grenouille, where we’re going later, has been on my to-go list since forever. [My husband] Justin always tells me it’s going to be my new favorite restaurant. It’s Linda [Fargo]’s favorite restaurant, actually. [New York] is very romantic, but I love the clash with the street; it’s loud, it’s wild. If you haven’t been here, you really don’t know what busy is.”

How her style has changed since she became a mom:

“I only got more practical, which sounds terribly boring and German, but it’s true. Everything kind of just has to work, and you don’t really want to be in a mini skirt because you’re on the floor all the time. I don’t know if it has to do with being a mom, but at the moment, I feel more driven towards an elegant style. I’m just a bit tired of tracksuits and t-shirts, maybe because I wore them in my pregnancy quite a lot.”

Her favorite pieces from the new Bottega collection:

“I love how strong it is. It’s minimal, more clean, updated, and in a more contemporary direction, which I like. The first drop especially has lots of wardrobe staples—pieces that you need in your wardrobe and you can wear forever—which is quite cool. There are also tank tops and cool coats and a very cool black dress that I’m going to wear later. It’s perfect—it can go from day to night. There are also some pretty awesome shoes. The ones I wanted to wear to this Bergdorf Goodman event tonight are already sold out. That’s how hot [this collection] is!”

On the end of “city style”:

“I don’t even know if there’s a [certain] city style anymore. For me, the Bottega woman looks very good on 5th Avenue, but she looks also very cool in, I don’t know, Brooklyn. But when I’m in Milan, I do love the architecture—very brutal with sharp edges, but beautiful at the same time. For me, that is the Milan that the Bottega woman has the same vibe as. It’s also the Milan I love very much.”

The pieces from the new BV collection she could see herself wearing forever:

“There’s a very cool snakeskin trench. It might not seem everyday, but snakeskin is quite neutral, so it works with everything. There’s also a cool cream silk dress with draping—you can drape it around the neck, [and] I even used it around my ponytail and wrapped it around it in the back. But then it’s very easy to wear, too. You can put it all on easily, and it looks cool.”

How she approaches familial style (and dressing baby Walter):

“[Laughs] Walter obviously doesn’t talk yet, but I’m pretty sure he will very soon comment on what we put him in and have his own opinion about it. Right now we are lucky that he wears what we put him in. Obviously, [fashion] is a part of our life. [My husband and I] think about what we’re going to wear and try to not be twins, because we like very similar things. Even though twinning with Walter is allowed. But there’s no baby Bottega yet.’”



















Her travel must-haves:

“I like these sheet masks from Magic Stripes, and eye patches, those are very good. I always try to do them on the plane when nobody looks because you look like a weirdo [with them on]. I usually bring melatonin for the first few nights. Also, a little bit unsexy, but compression socks make a huge difference. And then for packing, I have [a] rule that I’m only allowed one pair of shoes per day. But when you’re traveling for 20 days and you have 20 [pairs of] shoes...that’s maybe a little bit over-the-top. But I work in fashion.”

Where she thinks fashion is headed:

“I think it should, in general, calm down a little bit, with all the different deliveries and drops and capsules and whatever is happening. Nobody needs so many clothes! It sometimes takes the fun and joy out of fashion. Bottega is creating, for starters, wardrobe staples and saying they are to wear forever, which is a very nice thought. The last 30, maybe even 40 years, have been all about new seasons, new trends, how can I transform. This is not happening anymore because there are no trends, everything is possible and everybody can have their own look. People don’t want to necessarily shop for a new wardrobe every three months.”

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