David Meister Dishes Fashion Advice

In town from Los Angeles for the annual Crohn’s & Colitis fashion show and fundraiser at Oakland Hills Country Club in Bloomfield Hills, fashion designer David Meister paused to talk with Hour Detroit at Saks Fifth Avenue in the Somerset Collection.

What was your inspiration for your spring/summer collection?

My clothes are all about great silhouettes and great color. Clothing that’s well designed should have a sense of timelessness.

How did your time at Danskin [the fitness and body-wear company] influence your work?

That was one of my first jobs [after graduating from The University of Cincinnati College of Design, Art, Architecture, and Planning] and it was when the whole body-wear thing was so big. It was all about the stretch and fit. Most of my line, or at least 95 percent of my collection, is either knit, jersey, or has stretch to it. It’s a modern way to dress, and it fits more body types. It’s more comfortable, it doesn’t wrinkle, and it travels well.

What do you foresee as the biggest trends for the upcoming summer and fall season?

For summer, one-shoulder is still really big. Also, chocolate brown looks amazing for summer. As we go into fall, we’ll see a continuation of the one-shoulder thing, but with one sleeve. Also, interesting sleeves have become a big trend.

What fashion advice can you provide for summer parties?

A lot of women have a great black jersey dress that’s their go-to dress, but for summer, they should think that way in terms of a great colored dress. Take that bright-colored dress and mix up the colors [a red dress with orange shoes, for example].

Dress codes specified on party invitations are getting pretty creative. How do you interpret snappy casual or rustic chic?

Trust me, I get some invites and I’m like, ‘huh’? One was for New Year’s Eve and it was ‘casino chic’. So are we [talking] Monte Carlo chic, or seedy strip on Las Vegas chic? [For women this summer], if it’s an early evening, you can’t go wrong with a simple, brightly colored jersey dress. Be chic, but on the simple side. For guys, a T-shirt and blazer work.

Tina Fey, Drew Barrymore, and Sharon Stone are fans of your designs. How does it feel when you see them in fashion magazines wearing your looks?

It’s always fun. These women are so beautiful with amazing bodies, so the clothes look great. We dressed Fergie this year and Catherine Heigl. My all-time favorite is Sharon Stone; no one wears clothes like her.

How would you describe a David Meister woman?

Our customers like clothes that are simple, that make them look pretty, confident, and feel good.

What are some essentials every woman should own?

A black dress and a great pair of black pumps. Also, a pair of jeans that fit beautifully and a black jacket. I [also] believe every woman should have a ball gown in her closet, just in case.

Your thoughts on Catherine Middleton’s wedding gown?

She was totally appropriate. She looked beautiful, but I would have liked to see her push it a little more — a little bit more dramatic or over-the-top.

Any parting fashion advice for our readers?

Fit is the most important thing. You can have a $5,000 dress and, if it doesn’t fit you, it will look like a rag. You can take a $50 dress and, if it’s perfectly tailored to your body, it will look like a million bucks.