Portland Fashion and Style Awards celebrate burgeoning community

Sparkles, studs and feathers were all on hand at the third annual Portland Fashion and Style Awards on Nov. 9, hosted by the Portland Art Museum. The show, which was very Portland in both style and presentation, was anything but disappointing.

The award show was founded by Ann Akre, as a way to celebrate and honor those leading in the fashion and style industry of Portland. There were 96 nominees in 24 categories.

Categories included Best Fashion Photographer, Best Make-Up Artist, Best Emerging Designer, Best Fashion Stylist and Most Fashionable Local Male and Female TV Personality and Actress.

Numerous celebrities attended the event, including Bree Taylor of Grimm; Patrick Lamb; Seth Aaron, the winner of Project Runway’s seventh season; Rocco Gaglioti and Yotam Solomon.

Winner of the Best Make-Up Artist, M’chel Bauxal, has been in the industry for years and even acts as the President and First Lady’s make-up artist when they come to town.

Graduating from the Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising, Bauxal realized she has a passion for hair and make-up and began working in the field.

This was her second win at the Portland Fashion and Style Awards, and she accepted her award with sparkle and a smile. In addition to her make-up artistry skills, she sells custom plus-size clothing.

Other winners included Portland Monthly for Best Fashion Publisher, Mark Daniel Muzzy for the Best Fashion Photographer, Lis Bothwell as the Best Fashion Stylist, Tate Kuerbis for Best Shoe Designer and Wendy Ohlendorf for Best Emerging Designer.

While many of these names have little meaning to those outside of the fashion and style community, it is a growing culture within the Portland business scene and worthy of taking note.

If you have an interest in local fashion, consider giving a look to the designs of Kuerbis and Ohlendorf—they’re both exquisite and wearable.

Some memorable moments beyond the fashion included the planned host, Daniel Baldwin, being a no-show and the last-minute host, Portland drag queen Poison Waters, taking over. She commanded attention and entertained for the hours to come.

“I always wanted to be a rich white guy who can’t keep his commitment,” Waters said. “By the end of the night, I’ll be a Baldwin.”

Waters’ sass offered plenty of stingy and lasting quips, as well as a couple outfit changes and some song and dance.

No model, presenter, award recipient or audience member was off limits to Waters, which made for a night full of laughs and fun celebrating the blossoming Portland fashion community.

Oregon Humane Society was one of the event’s sponsors, and at one point during the award show puppies were on hand to strut their stuff alongside the models on the catwalk.

All in all, the Portland Fashion and Style awards were not only entertaining, but a great source of inspiration. The show was open to the public, with tickets starting around $45.