Fashion icon Amanda Lepore kicked off Sydney's giant gay pride parade Saturday, The Sydney Morning Herald reported.

The annual Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras Parade drew an estimate 100,000 people along its Oxford Street route to enjoy more than 135 floats celebrating famous gay and lesbian people throughout history.

Lepore, a New York artist and entertainer who transgendered at the age of 17, led the floats as chief of parade. True to her glamorous image, Lepore strutted out of William Square dressed in a diamond-studded G-string, and not much else.

“I have never been to a mardi gras before and I am excited about having a great time,” she told the paper.

What started 32 years ago as a gay and transsexual march for equality at a time when being gay was illegal in Australia has blossomed into one of the world's most celebrated and lavish gay parties.

Along its main Oxford Street artery people had begun gathering six hours prior for a prime viewing spot. Police barricades held back thousands of revelers competing for the unofficial prize of most outrageous costume.

Matthew Mitcham, the openly gay Australian diver that wowed at the Olympics in Beijing, led revelers in the merrymaking last year.

The giant parade comes just days after the Australian Senate killed a gay marriage bill with a decisive blow.

“We don't see why marriage should be a matter of law – we believe in love, not loins,” said Sylvia Azey, who was aboard the Brides of Mardi Gras float with her partner Heather Brophy.