Dressed for Success

PHOTO COURTESY OF DAVID MEISTER

David Meister’s journey to become a fashion designer to the stars is based on “no rules” and creating timelessness.

A fashion designer or a brain surgeon. As a kid, the “very opinionated” David Meister already decided he was going to be one or the other. It was Cher who convinced him to choose fashion. Or actually, her dress.

Meister couldn’t help but notice how great Cher looked on “The Sonny & Cher Comedy Hour.“ “I watched the credits where it said ‘Cher’s Gown by Bob Mackie,’ and that’s how I realized that people could really do that,” he says, meaning design celebrity evening wear. From that point on, Meister put himself on a path toward fashion stardom.

Meister went on to study Fashion at the University of Cincinnati College of Design. He would later move on to New York City where he worked at Danskin, a fitness and body wear company. There, Meister learned to work with all types of fabric and how it can be used to effortlessly accentuate and flatter a woman’s form. It wasn’t long before he had his first collection of evening wear in 1998, followed closely by his first fall line, which was composed of the more modern evening wear that came to be the beginnings of his brand and signature style. His career has only grown since the 1990s, as he’s gone on to create a daytime dress collection, a line of bridal dresses, and numerous pieces that can be found in top luxury department stores like Neiman Marcus and Saks Fifth Avenue, as well as top boutiques across the country.

Apart from his overall love for all things fashion, Meister notes that the aspect of fashion that appeals to him is that it’s always moving. “I love it because it’s never static or ever the same — it’s always different and it’s always changing, and it’s quick. There are no rules, there are no formulas.” He also says that design itself is just another form of creative problem solving — “problems” he continues to solve by creating beautiful pieces in a style that offers a “sense of timelessness” so they will stay fashionable no matter the decade. This style not only makes him stand out as an iconic designer, but as a master of his craft.

What keeps people coming back to Meister’s style is his judgment in terms of design, particularly with fit. “I think a great fit is key, something beautifully made that fits beautifully,” which helps him remain inclusive of all sizes. This is essential, especially for his clients who are walking the red car-pet, noting, “once you put a dress on and go on the red carpet, you should not be thinking about anything except smiling and feeling good you shouldn’t have to worry about anything else.”

PHOTO COURTESY OF DAVID MEISTER

 

Meister’s pieces have become staples on the red carpet, as his star-studded list of clientele continues to grow along stars such as Diane Lane, Sofia Vergara, Tina Fey, Sigourney Weaver, and many others. Some of his favorite dresses include a hot pink piece worn by Felicity Huffman at the Emmys in 2007, as well as Valerie Bertinelli’s sky blue chiffon dress for her New Year’s Eve wedding, a personal request made to Meister only a week before the wedding. Even with the razor thin deadline, he and his team finished the dress in time for the wedding, a lovely gown worn by Bertinelli that was also featured on the cover of People Magazine in 2011.

Another strong passion of Meister’s is giving back to others. Now residing in Los Angeles, he frequently works with philanthropic groups in his free time. For example, with The Art of Elysium, Meister goes to communities in Los Angeles to support individuals in the midst of difficult emotional life challenges such as illness, hospitalization, or crisis. He does this by spending time with children or young adults, doing fun projects and helping them to be creative and expressive with art. Meister is also very involved in Dress for Success, having donated dresses and supported the organization as a whole.

PHOTO COURTESY OF DAVID MEISTER

“I’ve always been a big supporter of this organization that works so hard to help people who are trying to put their lives back together and get back into the workforce,” Meister says, noting that it’s especially important for people to give back.

No matter the facet of life he sets his mind to, Meister showcases unwavering determination to succeed. When discussing his goals for the future, he humorously yet seriously says, “Simple: global domination.” Though these plans might take some time to reach their full effect, he adds that “if there’s something I want to do, I’ll do it.” He also recommends to anyone else interested in pursuing a career in fashion that this field is not for the faint-hearted.

PHOTO COURTESY OF DAVID MEISTER

 

Helen Mirren

©2013 JON KOPALOFF

Julia Louis-Dreyfus

 

PHOTO BY JOHN SHEARER / ©2009 WIREIMAGE

Viola Davis

PHOTO BY MATT BARON / BEI / SHUTTERSTOCK

Delilah Hamlin

PHOTO BY DAN MACMEDAN / WIREIMAGE

Diane Lane

PHOTO COURTESY OF DAVID MEISTER

Emmanuelle Chirqui 

“Fashion is one of those professions where if you’re talented and you just keep going, there’s no limit to where you can end up … You’re the master of your own destiny, but only if you want it, you have to work hard for it.”

 

     

This editorial originally appeared in The High End Winter 2020.

Aston Martin is once again wowing drivers with two new vehicles that have all the pizazz and none of the pollution.

The luxury carmaker held its inaugural Electric Future event in late June to showcase two all-electric models — The Rapide E and Lagonda Vision Concept — at Aston Martin Mayfair in London.

Relaunched as the world’s first zero-emission luxury brand in 2018, Aston Martin’s Lagonda line aims to leverage the latest advances in electrification and autonomous driving technologies while maintaining “a unique niche in the market,” says Marek Reichman, chief creative officer at Aston Martin Lagonda. 

Aston Martin Lagonda Vision Concept. 

“We set ourselves an ambitious target to be the world’s first luxury electric brand,” he says. “[Lagonda] is for the high-end luxury customer who wants to explore and be autonomous while remaining mindful of the impact they are having on the enviro-ment. Lagonda will achieve this but it will also delight the people who get to enjoy its unique internal environment.”

Aston Martin Rapide E.

The Electric Future featured the Rapide E, the company’s first electric sports car, as well as the Lagonda Vision Concept, the latter of which first turned heads at the Geneva Motor Show in 2018. The sleek vehicle’s four-passenger interior doubles as a stylish space, with cashmere interiors and swiveling fronts seats. The Vision Concept is designed as a self-driving vehicle, and it’s expected to enter production around 2022.

Meanwhile, the Rapide E has already delighted drivers across Europe and Asia, making a flashy debut in Morocco and Shanghai in spring. With a design that was based on its V12 predecessor, the Rapide AMR, it’s no surprise that the Rapide E clocks in at a max of 155 mph — all on an 800-volt battery. 

The car boasts twin electric motors that produce 610PS and 950Nm of torque, allowing it to zip from 0 to 60 mph in less than four seconds, and can manage the jump from 50 to 70 mph in 1.5 seconds.

On the inside, the car’s digital gadgets include a sleek display for battery and energy information, and Aston has also developed a smartphone app to monitor the car’s battery life and parking spot, among other features.

According to John Caress, vehicle line director, the Rapide E drives a little more than 200 miles on battery power alone, which can then be recharged from 0 to 80 percent in just 35 minutes — so you’re back up and on the road in no time. It’s expected to enter production at the end of the year, with a limited run of 155 vehicles.

Aston Martin Rapide E interior. 

Aston Martin Rapide E charges at its electric port. 

“Rapide E is proof of Aston Martin’s commitment to its Second Century Plan. Having an electric powertrain is no longer just a vision for our company, it’s reality. We are producing fully electric vehicles which will form part of our future strategy that will culminate when the first Lagonda vehicle enters the market,” he says.

Pricing is not yet available for these models. Explore all Aston Martin vehicles at astonmartin.com.

All photos and featured photo courtesy of Aston Martin. 

As luxury brands like BMW and Bentley introduce electric cars, the eco-conscious car is making its way into the luxury sector.
By Alyssa Gautieri

Electric cars have long been ignored by car fanatics, who prefer traditional air-cooled engines for their powerful exhaust notes and rumble. However, high-end buyers are increasingly considering hybrid or plug-in vehicles as the trend toward sustainability skyrockets and more luxury electric cars are produced.

In recent years, car companies have failed to acknowledge that wealthy car buyers admire electric power, according to Bloomberg.

 

Additionally, a new generation of car buyers are entering the market as more millennials begin to purchase cars. At the annual Geneva Motor Show in March, Bentley Motors Ltd.’s new chairman and CEO Adrian Hallmark noted that young drivers care about sustainable and ethical transportation more than buyers have in the past, Bloomberg reports.

 

“If you look at millennials or the younger generation, there does seem to be more thoughtfulness about what kind of mark you leave on the planet — more so than a decade ago,” Brinley says, as reported by Bloomberg. “As we move forward in the luxury landscape, for this type of buyer, having one in your garage will be crucial.”

 

Also at the Geneva Motor Show, Bentley introduced the 2019 Bentley Bentayga hybrid luxury SUV, which is the brand’s first steps toward electrification and the world’s first luxury hybrid model. 

 

Merging effortless performance on the open road and silent, emission-free driving in the city, the new plug-in hybrid model will be the company’s most efficient model ever with CO2 emissions of 75 g/km.

BMW has also introduced the first-ever BMW i8 Roadster. The BMW i8 Roadster, which is virtually silent and has zero CO2 emissions, can cover up to 18 miles in purely electric driving.

 

Combining locally emission-free mobility and high-caliber performance, the Roadster is among the first fully viable, high-performance plug-in hybrid electric cars, according to Bloomberg.

 

Bentley and BMW are only two of the many prestigious car brands that are now producing electric, energy-efficient cars. As a generation of young people continue to prioritize green efforts, the electric car may begin to dominate the luxury sector within the next 10 years.   

Photos courtesy of BMW and Bently

This article originally appeared in the Summer 2017 edition of The High End magazine. For more information about The High End, click here.

Ferrari introduces the 812 Superfast, the most high-performance vehicle the brand has ever launched.

By Stacey Staum

At the intersection of unprecedented engine technology and sleek modern design awaits the Ferrari 812 Superfast. In a nod to Ferrari’s 70-year history, the 812 Superfast features a 12-cylinder engine, the power unit that fueled the first vehicles bearing the Prancing Horse name in 1947. The 800 CV engine makes the 812 Superfast the most powerful road-going vehicle Ferrari has ever built.

While the 812 Superfast boasts unrivaled engine capabilities, Ferrari took care to ensure that the vehicle delivered a class-topping performance. The F1 dual-clutch transmission complements the engine’s performance by slashing response times, creating a feeling of power and speed in acceleration, and generating the auditory perception of rising rpms.

The 812 Superfast is also an aesthetically eye-catching addition to a brand with an unparalleled reputation for beauty and form. The muscular wheel arches create an appearance of power that is justified by the V12 engine under its hood. Where form meets function, the sculpted vents along the front bumper and along the wheel wells are a testament to the car’s unrivaled performance abilities.

The interior of the 812 Superfast matches the sporty character of the vehicle’s exterior. The dash elements appear to float and are angled towards the driver, creating the appearance of a cockpit that highlights the relationship between vehicle and motorist. The steering wheel, with commands, satellite pods, and contrasting materials, provides a unique driver experience that exudes class and sophistication.

Under the hood and within the cabin, the Ferrari 812 Superfast boasts unprecedented performance and style for the discerning motorist.

The manufacturer’s base suggested retail price is $308,000.

Photos courtesy of Ferrari 

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