With prices as low as $45, this tiara boutique reigns over Louisville — and not just for thrifty drag queens

Those glittering headpieces are for everybody nowadays, according to a story in one of our favorite business bibles: The Wall Street Journal. And Louisville, it turns out, has a primo place to buy them, with literally hundreds to choose from.

Kate Middleton tiara
Kate’s hand-me-down.

Now, we’re not talking about the real diamond deals — like the heirloom tiara Kate Middleton wore for her 2011 wedding to Prince William. Made by Cartier for Queen Elizabeth’s mother in 1936, it’s paved with 739 brilliant-cut and 149 baguette-cut diamonds.

Wall Street Journal writer Dana Thomas wasn’t made of money, either, when she stumbled on the tiara trend while planning her 1960s-themed 50th birthday party. “My husband and I hired a swinging jazz combo and urged invitees to dress in Rat-Pack chic,” she wrote. “And I made an appointment with my hairdresser David Mallett in Paris, where I live, to acquire a big updo.”

Thomas planned to add a toy tiara from her daughter’s dress-up days. “Little did I realize I was participating in a legitimate fashion trend,” she says, pointing to a flurry of tiaras seen at spring fashion shows and social galas. Indeed, if Thomas had been in Louisville in January, she would have seen the 2016 Derby Festival Royal Court introduction: five tiara-topped women eager to be crowned the annual Festival Queen. (And the winner was…)

Boulevard readers will be delighted to know they needn’t travel all the way to the Parisian arrondissements where Thomas shopped. Here in the city named for France’s Louis XVI, we have Affordable Elegance Bridal, a 10-year-old online emporium offering more than 300 tiaras, plus the occasional crown.

Tiara one
It’s a bargain!

The least expensive — the Botanical Pearl and Crystal Wedding Tiara — sounds very fancy indeed, for only $45 (marked down from $72): “Mariell’s soft cream pearl and crystal statement tiara will glam up your wedding with intricate hand-wired floral sprays. For a stunning blend of en vogue design and classic bridal couture, this headpiece is bursting with botanical femininity.”

Tiara prices max out at $249 for the silver-plated Artemis, adorned with hundreds of rhinestones.

In addition to web shopping there, customers can order by phone Monday through Saturday, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. (Eastern Time). 502-835-4421. Shipping is free within the U.S.

Photo, top: Raven (left) and Manila Luzon (right) crown Chad Michaels, winner of RuPaul’s Drag Race All Stars 2012.

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