Weekend in Sam – Part 2

Picking up where we left off – Saturday morning, after not nearly enough sleep, we grabbed our last cup from Intelligentsia, and picked up raspberries from the farmer’s market on our walk back, destined for champagne glasses…

We arrived in Oakland at 2pm, just in time to catch our mailwoman, who had a package for me to sign for. She jumped out of her mail jeep “I’m glad I caught you!”, which doesn’t even begin to cover it, since that package contained my suit for the evening! All my life, I’ve had surprisingly great luck.

Much cleaning & preparations were had, as we had left for LA the morning after our last Parlor Ceili, and arrived back in town to attend the “Last” Gaskell Ball AND host the Afterparty. I don’t plan things this tight; our sudden LA trip was decided on Tuesday. I have no idea when we packed. I’d like to thank Monica for being such a good sport. Really, I think she just knows she can’t stop me.


After extensive trying-on, vest-matching (one doesn’t realize one owns 12 different green vests until one dives into the costume vests department at Christmastime) and alterations (thank you Monica!) to make a ridiculous 70’s suit from the UK into a Victorian(esque) red velvet Christmas morning suit, my suit was ready for the Ball! I added tall boots to cover up the 70’s pegged trousers (WTF 1970’s?), and a green horizontal-striped vest from the last SF Opera costume sale.

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I have now learned my lesson on photographing next to colored lights.

Monica is in a self-made reproduction House of Worth gown at the New York Metropolitan Museum, complete with lace detailing and (many) hand-embroidered stars. Because she’s crazy.

Monica and I at 2014 Christmas Gaskell by Anthony Charles and I at 2014 Christmas Gaskell by Anthony

Above photos by Anthony. I’m glad he got a photo of Charles and I, since we look like a wonderfully garish Christmas party all by ourselves.

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Vivian and Natalie also had stellar Christmas dresses for the Ball! Vivian and Natalie should send me short descriptions of their beautiful gowns because I know they both made them.

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Monica got to pose with The Queen!

Not to be outdone, I got to dance with The Queen! It was majestic! (yes, like a Llama)

Dancing photos by Larry Colen.

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Here’s a lovely photo of Her Royal Majesty accompanied by His Royal Highness (Hi Gregory!), and closer shots of Jessica in the amazing Queen ballgown made by Laurie Tavan. Note the beautiful and appropriately-sized crown.

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The Queen in her underwear! And Her Royal Majesty smirks at me. This is a thing.

Note her smaller, appropriately sized “underwear tiara”. Anything worth doing is worth doing to a wonderfully ridiculous level.

These are the only photos from our Afterparty, because there isn’t anything more important than The Queen visiting your home in her underwear.

Raspberries were dropped in champagne glasses, and the Afterparty went swimmingly.  Sunday we RESTED ALL DAY. Much resting was had. Join us this Saturday for A Parlor Christmas!


I don’t know what to say about this photo by Kim, but I had to include it.


2 thoughts on “Weekend in Sam – Part 2

  1. Hi Sam! My red and white dress is made of heavy white satin, trimmed with cranberry grosgrain ribbon. The skirt and sleeves have a sheer overlay of organza with red velvet and gold metallic stripes. The overlay is edged in the same cranberry grosgrain ribbon, which is also used for small bows along the ruffled skirt bottom. This is actually a really old dress, but I thought it would be appropriate to wear my first Victorian ballgown to the last Gaskells!

    Liked by 1 person

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