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Nancy Volpe Beringer breaking barriers in fashion industry

Philadelphia designer offering adaptive design for those with a disability
Philadelphia designer offering adaptive design for those with a disability 04:07

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) -- Nancy Volpe Beringer is a local Philadelphia designer breaking barriers in the fashion industry. She's driven to make the business inclusive.

Her latest line called The Vault by Nancy Volpe Berringer is the first luxury designer resale shop offering complementary adaptive design for those with a disability.

Beringer and her brand want to help alter the fashion industry by promoting more inclusivity and adaptable design while continuing to be sustainable with pre-owned luxury items.

The pieces in the line are available to anyone to buy but for those with a disability, Beringer will schedule a meeting to find out how she can adapt that specific piece to meet the need, free of charge.

Beringer found her calling later in life. At age 61, she enrolled in the fashion program at Drexel University, where she graduated top of her class and received a record number of awards for her graduate collection.

At age 64, Beringer was the oldest designer to appear on the reality series "Project Runway." She used her final challenge to showcase an accessible look and was the runner-up of her season in 2020.

Beringer was also recognized as one of 10 women entrepreneurs shaping the fashion industry and society with innovative solutions through Fashion Impact Fun Week and the Conscious Fashion Campaign, an initiative of the Fashion Impact Fund.


Makeup artist and model Jessica Ruiz, who was born with arthrogryposis, says Beringer is paving the way.

"We deserve high fashion, we deserve accessibility and adapted high fashion, and Nancy is doing it," Ruiz said.

Ruiz recalls only having limited clothing options her whole life and she hopes The Vault resonates with every designer.

"For me to be able to have something that I am able to put on myself independently gives independence a whole new feel," Ruiz said.

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