Friday, June 30, 2017


Wednesday was another day out as a woman and it was wonderful.

The Hair

I so liked the Sky large cap wig from Noriko that I purchased another in a different color, Kahlua Blast (medium brown base with honey blonde highlights in the front). It is a far cry from the blond shades I have usually been wearing for over ten years. I needed a change and I am very happy with my new hair color.

(It reminds me of the brunette hair style Janet Leigh wore in the film Bye Bye Birdie, which was a big switch from her previous normal blond color.)

The Dress

My JB by Julie Brown shift dress is not “new.” I bought it over two years ago and wore it once, so it is "like new." And the way it looks on my down-sized body is new!

I thought it looked great, but as I left the house Wednesday evening, my wife commented that the dress looked tight. I sort of agreed with her… it was tight in all the right places.

To accessorize, I wore silver jewelry, nude high heels and a darker shade (Utopia) of Berkshire thigh highs than I usually wear to make my legs look tanned. I also wore my new nude Christian Siriano bag from Payless.

The Mall

I drove to West Farms Mall in West Hartford arriving there at 5 PM. I entered through Macy’s, perused a couple of racks of clothing, then decided to get something to eat. Brio was next door and I enjoyed my previous meal there, so Brio it was.

Not too much to say about dinner. I had an excellent meal, their “Pesto Chicken & Quinoa Salad.” My waiter was respectful, willingly took my photo with and referred to me as “Miss,” so he got a big tip!

I returned to Macy’s after dinner and found the Lacome counter in order to buy a new tube of their Hypnose Drama mascara. It is the best mascara I have ever used and my tube was nearing its end, so it was time to restock.

The Lacome sales rep was very helpful when I asked her about the best way to apply mascara to lower lashes. Forever, I have been using the tip of the mascara wand to lightly graze the lower lashes. It is a hit or miss proposition and the results are OK, but not great.

The sales rep showed me a another way. She took a cotton swab, bent it into a V-shape, applied a little mascara at the bend and said to use the bent swab to apply mascara to the lower lashes. The procedure made sense. When I returned home, I tried it and it worked a lot better than the way I had been doing it.

We conversed a bit more about makeup, she complimented mine and gave me some free samples when she rang me up.

I still had time to kill before the support group meeting began, so I looked through the racks again and found a beautiful white dress that I thought was made of white lace, but upon closer inspection, I saw that it was actually composed of white flower appliqués. I found one in my size and took it to the dressing room to try it on. In the dressing room, I sized up the dress and concluded that it was too small in the bust area and would never fit me, so I did not bother struggling to try it on.

It was time to exit the mall and make the short trip to the meeting hall to present my transwoman makeup tutorial for my old support group.

The Meeting

I will continue my story in my next post.

Source: Intermix
Wearing Jonathan Simkhai dress, Sergio Rossi sandals, Miansai bracelet, Odette earrings (Source: Intermix)

Alex Newell
Actor Alex Newell

Thursday, June 29, 2017

New Do

Just got home from my night out as a woman and before I go to bed, I want to post a photo that my waiter took while I was dining at Brio. I'll have more to show and say about my night out in my next post.

Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Dreaming Vividly

Since becoming semi-retired, more often than not, I remember my dreams after I awake. My dreams seem more vivid than I remember them being before I semi-retired, but one thing has not changed: in my most of my dreams, I am a woman.

In some dreams, I am aware that I am a transwoman, who has transitioned one way or another. In other dreams, being trans is not part of the equation — I am a woman, plain and simple.

Last night, I had a transwoman dream. I was in Vegas, where I have never been in my life and I was having a wonderful time at a casino until I encountered a family acquaintance. The twist was that even though I was embarrassed encountering the acquaintance, the acquaintance was not fazed and interacted with me as if I always was a woman!

And so it goes.

Source: Diane Von Furstenberg
Wearing Diane Von Furstenberg (Source: Diane Von Furstenberg)

Femulate reader Mindy wearing Calvin Klein from Dress Barn.

Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Out Wednesday

Wednesday evening, I will attend the meeting of the Connecticut Outreach Society (COS) where I will do my makeup presentation for transwomen.

COS ushered me out of the closet in the late 1970s and I was very active in the organization for over 20 years. It has been a few years since I last attended a meeting, so it will be a reunion of sorts for me and the organization that helped me be me. I'm looking forward to that as well as looking forward to wearing a new dress and new hairdo!

Source: Bebe
Wearing Bebe (Source: Bebe)

Cory and Kenny
Cory and Kenny femulated for Opposite Day at Celeste (TX) High School in 1989 (Source: Starla)

Monday, June 26, 2017

Best Moments

Michelle's guest post "Best Moments Out As A Woman" moved some of you to share your best moments in the comments to her post. This made for some interesting and inspiring reading and I hope you will continue to share your best moments in the comments below. If you have an interesting extended story to tell, please e-mail it to me and I will post it.

To keep the ball rolling, I will share a couple of my favorite best moments out as a woman.

One of my best moments occurred over dinner when I attended Fantasia Fair in 2010. I was chatting with two new friends, Cosette and Dianne, and we were discussing passing.

During our discussion, I mentioned how I always thought my voice was my weakness. They replied by saying my voice was perfect. And then they added that at the orientation brunch where they saw me for the first time, they thought I was the spouse of another attendee, that is, a cisgender female!

Convincing another transwoman that you are cisgender female is a great achievement, but convincing two transwomen simultaneously is even better! And convincing a cisgender female is affirming, too.

Out shopping one day four years ago, I was wearing white shorts, a multi-colored top, pink scarf, black bag and white wedges (see photo). As I was looking through the racks at JCPenney, a middle-aged African-American woman (probably younger than me) approached me and asked, "Can I ask you a question?"

I had no idea what she was going to ask ("What time is it?" "Where did you buy your shoes?" "Are you a tranny?"). I girded my loins, smiled and agreed to answer her question.

"You're dressed fashionably, so I'd like your opinion about a pair of slacks I was thinking about buying."

Wow! I certainly did not see that coming!

We discussed the merits of the slacks. I did not like what she had picked out and suggested something with a bolder pattern. She admitted that she really did not like what she had picked out and liked my suggestion better.

I pointed out a skirt with a pattern similar to what I had in mind and her eyes lit up as she said, "I saw slacks with that pattern. Now I just have to find them again! Thank-you for your help."

"Good luck," I said.

Then I took a deep breath.

“Oh, my God!” I screamed to myself.


Please share your favorite best moments. Inqueering minds want to know!

Source: Bebe
Wearing Bebe (Source: Bebe)

Michelle Bowles
Michelle Bowles

Friday, June 23, 2017

Best Moments Out As A Woman

By Michelle Bowles

When I was young and borrowing my mother’s clothes, I sometimes dreamed of one day spending a day out in public dressed as a female and… well, actually probably no more than just that. In that dream, nobody would pay me any particular attention, and I would just be treated as just another woman out and about doing her business.

Of course, in my heart of hearts I realised that would never happen. Except that it did, and not just for one day, but for numerous days (some of which I have written about in previous posts for Femulate). I then thought, “Can I list the best half dozen moments I have experienced en femme on these outings?”

I started a list of six moments and soon found I had gone past that number without really trying, so I thought, “How about a top 10?” I was soon past that, too – and so you can see, I ended up with a top 20. Cheating a bit, I know, but after I first suggested the “My favourite photo of…myself” feature that Stana ran a year or two back, many people found it really difficult to pick just one picture. So I am really carrying on a tradition (well that’s my excuse).

Here is my list of en femme moments anyway, and rest assured there are a few others I could have put in, too. See what you think.

1. A man opening a door for you and your cisgender female partner whilst saying “ladies.”

2. Being asked to dance by a man when at the pub disco.

3. Asking a shop assistant in a department store where the ladies clothes are and without even a double take, being asked whether I wanted the fashion or the posher clothes departments.

4. On finding the women’s department an assistant approaching me, as I am looking at some clothes, and asking me would I like her to reserve a changing cubicle for me so I can try some dresses on.

5. Being dressed up to the nines and walking into Royal Ascot on a sunny summer’s day.

6. Having a bookmaker say “Yes, Madam?” as I place a bet at Royal Ascot - and being addressed similarly when I go to collect my winnings (in fact being “Madamed” at any time would make my list).

7. When a waitress says “What can I get for you ladies?” as I am out with a TG friend for lunch.

8. Being served first when out with my cisgender female partner at an Indian restaurant, because the waiter obviously hasn’t read me, and therefore “ladies first” is irrelevant.

9. Being waved through past the roped off queue as I enter the pub on crowded Saturday evening as it has a LGBT friendly policy.

10. Being asked to wait in the roped off queue and refused entry at the other door of the same pub because they think I am cisgender female (this is many times better than moment no. 9).

11. Going up to a barman to be asked “What can I get you, Miss?”

12. Realising I’ve just spent a whole day in London, without once being aware of being “read” despite many one-to-one conversations.

13. Being accepted as just another woman by a group of female work colleagues (all of whom were unknown to me and my cisgender female partner) who were out for a Saturday evening together.

14. When in that group of females, a man outs his empty glass on our table, and one of the women leans across to me and says “I just love the way they think we’re going to wash it up for them.”

15. When talking to a woman on a night as she notices her female friend is being chatted up by a man and she interrupts her conversation with me to say “That bloke’s a real w*****.”

16. Being involved in women’s conversations in the ladies’ toilets.

17. When trying on something in the ladies’ changing rooms in a shop and a woman says how much it suits me.

18. Expecting people to look at me as I enter a crowded public area and nobody does.

19. Not noticing I’ve dropped an earring and a woman interrupts her conversation with her friend to let me know (I particularly liked this one, and I don’t know why).

20. Being asked by woman about where to pay in a multi storey car park and then getting into a conversation about how confusing they are.

As you can see these are moments when out and about and largely can be summarised by “being accepted in the female world” as I so wanted to be all those years ago.

Normally when talking about list of favourites we are asked “And which is top of your list?” Before I reveal that, I’m going to list some of my very favourites – hopefully you’ll choose which would be yours. Firstly, I really liked the bookmaker at Ascot addressing me as “Madam” because I was up to that point not entirely sure I was passing, but that proved I was and added to the experience was being dressed in a posh frock, hat and heels – what’s not to like? And of course, going back shortly after to collect my winnings and being addressed as Madam again meant I floated away afterwards, a few pounds the richer.

Being made to wait in the roped off queue at the pub because a number of door staff had not read me was particularly nice, too (no. 10). Also I think experiences that mean I’ve been accepted into the woman’s world must be up there, so examples such as numbers 4, 15, 16 and 17 (excuse me for using number references) would be near the top.

If I had to choose just one, I’d probably say the comment after a man had placed a glass on our table (no. 14) would be my favourite. I had gone on a Saturday evening with my cisgender female partner, to our regular gay (and straight) friendly haunt. When we arrived it was already crowded and there was no seat, but a group of about 6 women saw we were standing and moved up to make room for us.

We soon got into conversation with them and discovered they were work colleagues out together – they were all straight, but just liked this particular pub. This continued for the rest of the evening, and I just assumed they had read me and had accepted me as I am, which was a lovely thing in itself. Then the man put the glass on our table and walked away. The fact that one of the women leaned over to me to comment that he had just thought we, being a group of women, would wash it up for him, was wonderful. It seems, to her, I was just a woman she had met on a night out.

These are all experiences that were a largely a surprise and to do with being out en femme and If anybody has a similar list to send to Femulate I, for one, would love to read it.

Yes, I like lists (part of my male self that carries over into my female half). As they say, there are two categories of people in the world; those that put people into categories, and those that don’t.

Source: ShopBop
Wearing Marc Jacobs (Source: ShopBop)

Yasumasa Morimura
Photographer Yasumasa Morimura femulates Marlene Dietrich.

Wednesday, June 21, 2017


Before we leave Kingston, NY, I have one more story from Upstate New York about a missed opportunity.

Next door to the quick print shop was a woman's clothing boutique. The print shop and woman's boutique were in the same building, an old Victorian home, and the back rooms of the print shop and the boutique were separated by an unlocked door.

The boutique owner/proprietor was a woman in her mid-50's. Initially, we were just acquaintances, but we became friendlier after she forgot her keys one day and I let her get into her store via the unlocked door that separated our back rooms. After that we chatted almost once a day and became better acquainted.

Over time, I noticed a couple of gents who shopped at her store on more than one occasion, so one day I asked her about her male customers. She quickly responded that they were "transvestites" and that she had about a half dozen male customers who were so inclined.

"That's interesting," was my reply.

Then she added, "You look to be a size 16. I have some outfits in your size that would look lovely on you."

I didn't see that coming! I was very embarrassed and could only manage to squeak out, "Thanks, but no thanks."

"If you change your mind, you know where to find me."

I thought about it often, but never took her up on her offer.

Source: ShopBop
Wearing Alice + Olivia (Source: ShopBop)

Alex Mathias, Vadim Oleynik and Artem Meh
Alex Mathias, Vadim Oleynik and Artem Meh femulating on Ukraine television's version of Your Face Sounds Familiar.

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

All In

I mentioned in my last post that a highlight of my six-week stint working in Kingston, New York, was visiting an old-school lingerie shop in boy mode and getting fitted for an all-in-one.

After I found the store in the Yellow Pages, I checked it out one evening after work. It was located in downtown Kingston, not in a strip mall or shopping plaza, and it looked tiny and inconspicuous… the antithesis of Victoria’s Secret.

For days, I thought about the store and finally gathered up the courage to visit it during a lunch hour. I drove to the store, parked on the street and sat in my car waiting for minimum pedestrian traffic to avoid anyone seeing me entering the store. When all was clear, I exited my car and entered the store as quickly as possible.

A middle-aged lady greeted me. She probably had seen it all, so when I mentioned I needed some foundation garments for my Halloween costume, I don't know if she believed me. And when I suggested that I might need an “all-in-one,” that probably tipped my hand immediately – how many guys know what's an "all-in-one?"

Nevertheless, she was very helpful and after measuring me up, she handed me two heavy-duty all-in-ones to try on and said, "Take these to the dressing room, try them on and call me so I can see if they fit properly."

I did not expect such a hands-on sale, but was glad to have it.

I went to the dressing room, quickly stripped down to my briefs and zipped myself into the first all-in-one, but it did nothing for me. However, the second one did wonders and I summoned the proprietor to examine me wearing the second all-in-one.

"Wow, that was quick," she remarked. I assumed that her other male customers were not as fast as I when trying on their "first" foundation garment.

She checked me out and gushed about my great girlish figure. I tipped my hand again when my face turned beet red in embarrassment. I could not pay for my purchase fast enough and get out Dodge.

By the way, I loved that all-in-one. It was constructed with spring-like metal stays and it gave me a figure like no other. It was my go-to foundation garment for years. I wish I could find one like it today!

Source: New York Magazine
Wearing MISSGUIDED (Source: New York Magazine)

Source Juan's New Male Fashion
Bill suggested that this would be the tipping point (Source "A Day at the Office" from Juan's New Male Fashion)

Monday, June 19, 2017


Don't Get Out Much

As a youth, I did not know much about sex. In fact, I am still waiting for my father to tell me about the birds and the bees! And I was very naive, too. That plus being a very feminine boy was a recipe for disaster. 

Except for a lot of verbal abuse, I came away fairly unscathed. But I sure had some close calls.

First job out of college was working for a chain of quick print shops as a fill-in for co-workers during their vacations or health-related absences. Thus, I found myself in our Kingston, New York, store for a six-week stint during the fall winter of 1974.

Being near Woodstock, the Kingston store had some interesting clientele – lots of well-known artists and musicians. Most of them were very cool, but I recall having a difficult time with a musician of some note, who wanted me to make photocopies of copyrighted sheet music, which was against store policy, not to mention against the law. But I digress.

One of our regular customers was a funeral director. He showed up one day at high noon and offered to take me to lunch. Naive me agreed and we went to a nearby diner, had lunch, then headed back to the shop. On the way back, he hinted that I could thank him for lunch in a very intimate way!

I almost regurgitated lunch when I realized what he had in mind, but I played dumb until we got back to the shop and was able to escape from his black Cadillac. I never saw him again.

Kingston wasn't all bad and I did have some positive experiences. One highlight was visiting an old-school lingerie shop in boy mode and getting fitted for an all-in-one, but that's another story.

Did the Point Tip?

Source: Juan's New Male Fashion
Source: Juan's New Male Fashion

Sunday, June 18, 2017

Friday, June 16, 2017

Drag in the Family

By Starla Renee Trimm, Femulate Contributing Editor

The other day, I happened to catch one of the All in the Family episodes in which Finocchio's drag queen, Lori Shannon (Don McLean), appeared as female impersonator Beverly LaSalle.

There were three episodes in which Lori appears:  "Archie the Hero" (1975), "Beverly Rides Again" (1976) and "Edith's Crisis of Faith, Part 1" (1977). The character is somewhat of a breakthrough, being the first time a drag queen is depicted in a positive and sympathetic manner on U.S. television. Beverly becomes a friend of the Bunkers, especially Edith, who becomes quite chummy with her new "girlfriend." Even Archie comes to begrudgingly tolerate LaSalle's flamboyant personality.

In the third episode, Beverly is killed in a gay bashing causing Edith to go into a deep depression and nearly lose her faith in God. This is the kind of gut-wrenching pathos brilliantly, but respectfully complimented with humor that the show was known for in its heyday. (Interestingly, it has been pointed out that LaSalle may be more trans than drag queen, as she is shown dressing en femme even when not performing.)

Sadly, Shannon was not as sympathetic as the character portrayed in All in the Family. Shannon/McLaen was said to be quite stuck-up and mean-spirited in real life and was not well-liked by many of the drag queens at Finocchio's. When McLean passed away from health issues at the young age of 45, one fellow performer was quoted as saying, "I don't care what the doctors say – that queen died of hate."

Wearing Nicholas dress, Alexander Birman sandals and Mercedes Salazar earrings (Source: Intermix)

Kerela, India
Transgender beauty pageant in Kerela, India, June 2017

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Looking Good

Paula Gaikowski sent me this link to a BuzzFeed article titled "19 Insanely Useful Makeup Tips For Trans Women." It is interesting on two fronts.

1. It has some useful makeup tips intended for women like us. (I even learned a few things.)

2. Articles like this usually appear on trans-related blogs, websites, etc., but in this case, the article appeared on what is considered a mainstream "civilian website."

That's progress!

Source: Olivia Palermo
Wearing Banana Republic (Source: Olivia Palermo)

Brendan Jordan
Brendan Jordan, femulating womenswear model