I have always loved Portland, Oregon. When my friends David and Steve invited me to LaFemme Magnifique (an International Beauty Pageant for drag queens), I was excited and intrigued. In my last blog, you will see some of the photos of the beautiful, creative and talented performers. The show was fantastic!
Show Producers, Darcelle and Roxy invited me to a barbeque at their gorgeous home the following day. Roxy gave me a tour, which allowed me to see all the exquisite furnishings, fixtures and art work which they have gathered from all over the world. It was “tastefully opulent”. Not only is their home filled with beautiful antiques, but the connection between the pieces and the lives of these wonderful and talented people is very touching.
It has been my experience that my male gay friends are as compassionate, generous and loyal as my closest girlfriends. David and Steve were devoted to my Aunt Helen for many years. She loved them dearly, as do I. We’ve had a lot of fun together. However, never did I imagine that I would be drafted to do David’s “make-up” for our special event!
Though not a Pageant contestant himself, David had his heart set on “dressing up” for the evening. We found a beautiful purple beaded dress and had a crazy desperate search for silver sandals – in size 12! With a borrowed over-the-top blond wig, David made his debut at the LaFemme event. Everyone thought he looked beautiful.
The following day, I was facinated when I met some of the Pageant contestants – as men! Some of them were unrecognizable as their transformations for the show had been so dramatic. I found them interesting and friendly and more than willing to pose for pictures with me in my beautiful purple hat.
I was so excited when I discovered that Portland has the largest “Hat Museum” in the country. There were over 1,000 hats in 5 different collections, covering 160 years of women’s hats. Unfortunately, we were not allowed to take pictures in the Museum, but I will be sharing a lot of facinating information on antique and vintage hats as well as stunning tea hats, retro creations and what’s new for today’s hat fancier!
Portland is a haven for anyone who likes tromping through numerous “vintage” stores. I brought home several fabulous hats from the 40’s and 50’s! I also met a true “milliner” whose showroom featured many tempting hand-crafted hats and I even got a peek into her workroom. Did I buy yet another hat?
Well, let’s just say that I like to keep my money where I can see it – sitting on top of my head!