Vera Ellen Wang (Chinese: ; pinyin: Wng Wiwei, Mandarin pronunciation: [u uu]; born June 27, 1949) is an American fashion designer based in New York City and former figure skater. She is known for her wide range of haute couture bridesmaid gowns and wedding gown collections, as well as for her clientele of elite ladies figure skaters, designing dresses for competitions and exhibitions. Vera Ellen Wang was born and raised in New York City and is of Chinese descent. Her parents were born in Shanghai, China, and came to the United States in the mid-1940s. Her mother worked as a translator for the United Nations, while her father owned a medicine company. Wang has one younger brother, Kenneth. She graduated from The Chapin School in 1967, attended the University of Paris and earned a degree in art history from Sarah Lawrence College. Wang began figure skating at the age of six.