So excited to get ‘the book’ in the mail today – Neiman Marcus’s seasonal magazine full of articles, happenings, but mostly beautiful fashion! After perusing the men’s side and ear-marking some spring possibilities for Mr. B, I turned to the women’s side in hopes of finding great things in store for my spring/summer wardrobe. Almost immediately, I came across an article that I would not expect to find in ‘the book,’ but it peaked my interest nevertheless. Take a look:
by Tracy Achor Hayes
When Chrysler stopped making its Jeep Grand Wagoneer in 1991, most people didn’t even blink. Others – car and design junkies, mostly – went into a tailspin. And one, Leon Miller, decided to do something about it: The Kerrville, Texas, retiree contacted the car’s designer and started a ‘backyard business’ restoring the boxy wood-paneled wonders. Just over two decades later, Miller’s Wagonmaster (wagonmasters.com) employs a team of seven and is known around the world. Seriously.The company’s meticulously rebuilt SUVs – over 1600 to date, including a few dozen smaller Jeepster Commandos – now roll on streets from San Francisco to Kuwait. (Nantucket is such a hot spot, one writer likened a grocery store parking lot to ‘an AMC dealership circa 1983’) You’ll also find them in the garages of, among others, Tommy Hilfiger, Philippe Starck, Alan Jackson, and Hank Williams, Jr.
Miller won’t consider ‘renewing’ a car with rust damage or more than 70,000 miles, which means only one of every 40 or 50 prospects makes the cut. He typically spends $10,000 to $15,000 on each vehicle, adding such modern luxuries as sunroofs or heated seats only begrudgingly. ( He draws the line at flashy paint jobs or tricked-out rims.)
Final price? $30,000 to $40,000 on average. Carburetor included.
Now that’s one heck of a Spring Accessory.
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