Saturday, December 15, 2007

Caledon & Winterfell unite

Today, I had the following brief conversation with Darkling.

Said she, "I'm trying on my dress for the ball!"

Said I, "What ball?" I've been living under the rock of finals week, and hadn't had a chance to attend to Caledonian news much.

"Why," Darkling said, "THE ball! The Caledon-Winterfell union!" The two continents have merged, you see, with the creation of the sim Caledon Cape Wrath. To bless the joining of the continents, TPTB decided to throw a to-do.

"I warn you," Darkling continued with her customary sly smile, "I look loovely in this frock; it'll be hard to outshine me."

Miss Raymaker is undoubtedly wearing a Vintage Clothing Reproductions frock, Skye Qi is her favorite designer

I was immediately thrown into a tizzy, and asked what colors she wore, so that I could at least complement such a fine dress. I didn't have time to shop, so I put on some old ~silentsparrow~ favorites, and added another beautiful hat from Elegance Hats.

Then, clothes all firmly in place, Darkling and I collapsed like Pre-Raphaelite maidens with too-tight corset stays.

Heliotropic Unsustainable is in the Paeoti Regal outfit and skirt from Nymphetamine

Later, there was the ball. I don't know why I bothered finding a frock, I danced half the night as my boy avatar anyway (the better to use the blue waltz ball). I got to salsa with Abigale Raymaker, one of my first friends in Caledon, and then met Miss Moo Money, the owner of the land that we were dancing upon. Miss Money is an old and well known denizen of SL, and it was very lovely to dance with her.

I covet Bela's skin from Nomine

After that, I danced with my RL turned SL friend, Heliotropic Unsustainable, and my final dance was with the stunning Bela Lubezki (I swear I didn't dance with her because we complemented each other's dresses, honest).

It was fun. Nothing like waltzing to a madrigal to make you feel like Christmas is here.

***Hat: Elegance Hats Betty in red
***Hair: -Hiccup Long Mess in Burgundy
***Skin: Tete a Pied Vivant Cream Paon 4
***Tattoo: AITUI TATTOO - Cherry Blossoms V.2 (red) (worn in some of the photos)
***Shirt: ~silentsparrow~ forget me not in red from the set
***Skirt, corset, bloomers, stockings: ~silentsparrow~ ashes to ashes (red) from the set
***Necklace, earrings: Violet Voltaire My Violent Heart in rusted (worn in some of the photos). I blogged about it over here, and see? Totally welded to my skin.

Caledon Studios opening party

Last night was the opening party for Caledon Studios in Caledon Penzance. (Caledon Penzance, 57, 184, 23)

There are so many creative people in this Second Life place. A few of them got together and decided to start making interesting movie trailers, with the purpose of creating an eight minute movie short at the end of it all. To "put a fun front" (in Mr. Sputnik's words) on their work, they created a portion of the Penzance sim named Caledon Studios. It looks a lot like a cross between Hollywood and Victorian Steampunk, with little stores devoted to costuming and photography and filming, and a few neat sets where people can play and snap photos.

What an excellent idea. I love it when people create grown-up playgrounds in Second Life. Makes my journeys in this world feel worthwhile! With movie music playing in the background, I danced the Charleston alongside Miss Darkling Elytis, who has a press located in the Studios.

I also spotted a glamorous couple completely clad in ~silentsparrow~ (picture above). They looked so elegant I had to snap a photo. Xyrra Reymont & Chaos Richard are wearing ~silentsparrow~ ashes to ashes (the lady) and limited edition Kiri in night (the gentleman).

I'm wearing OH! WHAT A NEAT...BOUTIQUE's Overkill frock (I was a bad girl and didn't install the prim skirt script). Under it, fishnets from a freebie box, and the sorrow undershirt in ash from the ~silentsparrow~ sorrow set. Also, Tillie hat by Elegance Hats, Hiccup's Amelieish hair, and Tete a Pied's Gothic Corbeau skin. Darkling (left) is wearing the Brigitte silver gown by Ivalde, Twiggy bob hair by Cake, Lirilith skin in LE Nomine, Shiny Things classic pumps, and the new Mechanica jewelry set by Shiny Things. Forgive me for not linking! I'm running off to RL now!

Friday, December 14, 2007

Five fluffy Friday ... er, things.

(1) If you haven't done the Sin Skins pearl hunt, go do it. It's happening until Monday. My skin, lashes, eyes and nails are from this hunt, and that's only four of the twelve items! (Sin Skins, 128, 128, 0) (Hints for finding stuff here.)

(2) Eight lovely shoe freebies at the Mary Jane Shoes Christmas ornament freebie hunt. Warning: the ornaments are tough to find. Definitely pool resources with everybody at the store, because you'll need it! (Three hints to start you off: Santa, flowers, tree.) ( Chalanties, 128, 128, 0)

(3) As always, Second Mirage's advent calendar giveaway. Pretty cameo today. (Second Mirage, 71, 15, 23)

(4) In love with Philotic Energy. The other day I found the shop at Le Zoo, bought some hair, and died because it was so cute. Today, a fabulous tip from SL Freestyle led to poking through their group for a notice marked "Stuffs." Wow. So many free styles to try on, and I actually adore them all. (Imogen 56, 19, 56)

(5) Along with all that free stuff I'm wearing Draconic Kiss's new winter coat. It's so gothic loli and cute, and I love Draconic's prims. (the coat comes with a fluffy collar that I'm not wearing, in three more colors.) (Koreshan, 159, 47, 24)

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Velvet aboveground

Here is the ~silentsparrow~ creator, hyasynth Tiramisu, in her own kiri suit in the mist color. She's wearing Calico Creations Calico hair in silver, and Shiny Things Chunky Ribbon Boots. If you look closely, you can see that the necklace and earrings she's wearing are not-yet-released Shiny Things as well, the Mechanica set. Mmmm.

~ silentsparrow~ had a limited edition hunt today for the kiri suit. There might even be a few left on the sim!

How to describe the suit. It is formal dark Victorian wear with impeccable prim tails and cuffs and jabot, with enough bits for men as well as women in the box (almost enough for a suit each), and brocade that makes me want to lick the fabric.

Do you have a sim that feels like home away from home? ~silentsparrow~ is like that for me. On nights when I feel like people watching, I head to a quiet corner of the store, park myself on one of the comfy couches, and stare at the nice avatars as they stare at clothing. I especially love it when they put on their new outfits. I own most of ~silentsparrow~, I admit it (my group tag isn't "twittery fangirl" for nothing), but I love seeing how different everyone looks.

This is something that I love about Second Life clothing. We can all have on exactly the same thing, but because our bodies, skins, hair and -- and taste are so different, we all look different. It's just like real life, only everything actually fits (and damn, I envy my avatar's ability to wear just about anything s/he wants).

My boy av is in the dusk color, looking like some sort of debauched Oscar Wilde character. He's humming Velvet Underground's I'm waiting for my man.

Free, free, free

I'm wallowing in freebies, and by that I mean I could probably put on a new one every hour for the rest of the day. Sin Skins is having a pearl hunt that is on until Monday 12/17, twelve free items for the skin, eyes, lashes, and nails. Such great stuff! Here, I'm wearing the Clara Bow skin, Tipped Vanity Lashes, and Intense Violet/Obsidian Eyes. I've never really played with lashes before, but I like how fluffy these look.

Yesterday, to celebrate the end of finals, I stopped by Barerose to see their new collection. Such great stuff! I instantly fell for the First Queen set. The fabric is gorgeous (there's also a blue version, but I'm a sucker for orange), and the prims fit me quite well.

All of this goes well with the other lovely freebie from today, Second Mirage's Fiona leather cross (available until the end of the day from Second Mirage, join the group and touch the advent tree).

***Hair: Calico Creations Rebecca in Obsidian Copper, (Calico Kitty, 124, 70, 35)
***Skin: *Sin Skins* Clara Bow Red Stratus FREE from their pearl hunt, (Sin Skins, 128, 128, 0)
***Lashes: *Sin Skins* Tipped Vanity Lashes FREE from their pearl hunt, (Sin Skins, 128, 128, 0)
***Eyes: *Sin Skins* Intense Violet/Obsidian Eyes FREE from their pearl hunt, (Sin Skins, 128, 128, 0)
***Necklace: (Second Mirage) Fiona leather necklace advent freebie, quick, get it now! (Second Mirage, 71, 15, 23)
***Shirt and gloves: Barerose ::: B@R ::: from the First Queen set, (Bare Rose, 143, 27, 30)
***Belt: caLLie cLine - fat belt - dull teal store freebie, (caLLiefornia, 198, 244, 23)

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

I decided against the bloody bandages

Today while the grid was down Pushbutton Industries posted their update. I went, I got suckered in, I loved their dirty elegance.

I think I'm perfectly dressed for a cocktail party in a junkyard.

***Hat: Curious Kitties Osyare Kittie Hat in Silver (tinted dark green), Curious Kitties >> accessories, (Curious Kitties, 219, 21, 21)
***Skin: Tete a Pied Vivant Cream Paon 4, free group giveaway, (Nouveau, 196, 149, 22)
***Gloves and Stockings: Pushbutton Industries *PBI* Dirty Bandage Gloves and Stockings (without blood), (Le Zoo 130, 143, 22)
***Skirt, prim skirt & top: Royal Blue anti-Reactionary dress, (Endicott, 196, 60, 130)
***Undershirt: *Thimbles* 1L Layering Tops in Orchid, free store giveaway, (Endicott, 196, 60, 130)
***Hair: Philotic Energy PE Ariadne Black, (Imogen 56, 19, 56)
***Jacket: Pushbutton Industries Scarf from the Thriftstore duster in plaster dust set, (Le Zoo 130, 143, 22)
***Shoes: Shiny Things Ribbon Boots in black with color changing lace hud (Shiny Falls, 157, 129, 55)

While the grid is down...

Random act of photo, dancing in ~silentsparrow's~ White? Wedding outfit, with hair from Kin and hat and skin from Draconic Kiss

"While the grid is down" meme:

What's your favorite place in all of SL? Can be a sim, a shop, an amusement park, whatever.

(Post the question and your answer in your blog!)


My answer: I think I like Koreshan best. It's got a faded carnie feel to it that makes me feel instantly at home. Amazing shops + things to stare at, SL at its best.

Monday, December 10, 2007

Violet Voltaire's My Violent Heart

I love Violet Voltaire's new necklace with great love. I am going to weld it to my skin. Luckily, my inner post-apocalyptic rockabilly drow (don't you have one?) is probably into that kind of thing. Find it at ~All Dolled uP~ Doll avatars, Salutaris 2, 162, 52, 313.

***Hat: Calico Creations, Reba hat in black from the Reba hair set, (Calico Kitty, 124, 70, 35)
***Hair: Hiccup Ghost Boobs in black, (Caribe!, Lions Shore, 14, 105, 20)
***Goggles: ~ MAGIKA ~ biohazard goggles in black and white, (Gormthoog, 184, 55, 26)
***Necklace: ::Violet Voltaire:: My Violent Heart in rusted, (Salutaris 2, 162, 52, 313).
***Skin: Tete a Pied vivant Drow Medium 3, (Nouveau, 196, 149, 22)
***Dress: Ingenue ~ Girl Next door ~ Christmas freebie, ( Born, 99, 49, 32)
***Corset: ~silentsparrow~ Magpie corset on the jacket layer from the set, (silent sparrow, 176, 138, 729)
***Shoes: Shiny Things Vintage Pumps in black, (Nouveau, 65, 63, 30)

Critical "skin" theory

I've been reading some of Richard Delgado's critical race theory lately. His main point is that if you aren't black, you can never know what it's like to be black. Skin IS important. This is something you find out (to paraphrase Delgado) the second a police man lets you off easy on a ticket because you aren't black. Delgado says that when this happens, you should ask the policeman whether he would've done it if you weren't white. He says this will help everyone wake up to the prejudices ingrained in their behavior and enable social change.

I was thinking about this as I stared at my Skins folder. I only own a few skins deeper than "cream," partly because when I try to look ethnic, I go for Asian. This is because of my own background; I'm half Asian but look entirely white, which confuses everyone who meets me, and often confuses me too.

Much like Barak Obama, I grew up in Hawaii and was treated prejudicially because of the color of my skin. The default skin color in Hawaii is a soft mocha color, a melange of pan-Asian and Pacific Islander peoples who all intermarried to create what people who live there call Locals. White skin symbolizes plantation owners in Hawaii, or tourists who colonize through money (and wear knee socks on the beach). I lived through "kill Haole" day, but that wasn't the worst part; the worst part was having few friends. The irony was that I probably had more Asian blood in me than most of the people bullying me, but a strange genetic fluke rendered my skin pale instead of tan.

This is not to say that I didn't meet many excellent Locals in Hawaii. I did. I love my old home town of Hilo, and wave virtual fingers at all the people who looked beyond my skin to get to know who I was.

Have I earned slipping into a black skin? I don't know; probably not. I understand what racism feels like. I understand what it's like to be judged based upon the color of my skin. I don't, however, know what it's like to be black. The interesting part of Second Life is that you can literally slip into a black skin and try it out.

So I did.

(Small side note about clothes. I had to have this dress the second Ivalde posted their fashion update. Also, the earrings are today's Second Mirage giveaway -- go get them! They're gorgeous!)

***I love my christmas tree: /artilleri/ sad little christmas tree, (artilleri, 87, 118, 26)
***Hair: Hiccup Slow Jamz 2007 in black, (Caribe!, Lions Shore, 14, 105, 20)
***Skin: Tete a Pied Vivant Chestnut Paon 4, free group giveaway, (Nouveau, 196, 149, 22)
***Eyes: ::: Flesh Inc ::: Golden Brown Eyes, ( Doesburg, 106, 170, 22)
***Earrings: Second Mirage, Kayla brushed steel earrings, advent calendar giveaway, (Second Mirage, 71, 15, 23)
***Scarf: caLLie cLine, SNOW BABY "FOREVER SWEATER" sweater neck with scarf (I'm just using the scarf, tinted green), free giveaway, ( caLLiefornia, 198, 244, 23)
***Dress, prim cuffs, prim skirt, bloomers: ~~Ivalde~~sarah blue dress, (Ivalde, 133, 182, 23)
***Gloves: *WR* Xmas Outfit Gloves, free giveaway, (Bloom County, 33, 182, 23)
***Boots: Shiny Things Ruffled Boots in cocoa, (Nouveau, 65, 63, 30)

Sunday, December 9, 2007

We wish you a merry free thing

My avatar looks very, very merry in this week's free things. (Okay, actually, she looks more like she's practicing her best "I'm smiling on the inside" expression.) Thank you again, freebie folks. ♥

***Hat: Chicanery, Santa Hat black stripes, free store giveaway, (Koreshan 164, 174, 24)
***Skin: Tuli S4 goth tone free group giveaway, (Plush Rho, 130, 239, 22)
***Hair: Maitreya, free store giveaway, (Glam World 02, 243, 213, 27)
***Eyes: !Talisman, free store giveaway, (Yawgoo, 73, 119, 97)
***Gloves: Vintage Reproductions, from the Pamran treasure hunt, part of a dress set -- tinted darker. (Pamran, 85, 130, 22)
***Necklace: Second Mirage, advent calendar giveaway, (Second Mirage)
***Dress: Cupcakes, *<3C!* FREE DRESS, one of three freebie from their sale, (Optimal, 104, 224, 24)
***Stockings: Style your Destiny, black and grey stripes, (Kidd, 162, 188, 29)
***Shoes: Maitreya, free group giveaway, (Glam World 02, 243, 213, 27)

Dipsy's walking with his hat on, very proudly into view

This is the third in Elric Anatine's set of misguided snowmen. Previous posts are here and here. You can check them out at Caledon Wellsian, right near the hub.

Mmmmmmmm. Elegance Hats. Ivalde's sim had a fashion show today (which I sadly missed due to RL). However, the second Elegance Hats put out new items, I rushed over to see.

I was instantly suckered in by this one, the Eliza (comes in three other colors, rose, brown and black). So vaguely smushed! So riveted and violet! So gently draped with tulle! Such a perfect match for the more purple items in my Victorian wardrobe!

Made me hanker to talk with a thick cockney accent and hope for my Pygmalion to wander by...

Edit: I just got back from Subversive Vavoom's new shop, where I snagged several of Violet Voltaire's new necklaces. Go look at the pretty she created -- all that delicate metal work! Now it's miiiine, my own, my Sorry.

***Hat: Elegance Hats Eliza in purple, (Ivalde, 60, 126, 35)
***Hair: Hiccup Long Mess in black, (Caribe!, Lions Shore, 14, 105, 20)
***Skin: Tuli S4 goth tone free group giveaway, (Plush Rho, 130, 239, 22)
***Earrings and necklace: Violet Voltaire Cameo Spider Earrings and Necklace (free Halloween giveaway), (Peronaut, 72, 219, 36)
***Jacket: Kyoot Army Snake Charmer Top, (Vakkert Gal, 193, 224, 21)
***Corset shirt, prim skirt & bloomers: Draconic Kiss Spinerette in purple, (Koreshan, 159, 47, 24)
***Gloves: Kru's Boutique, gloves from the Rendezvous Under the Moonlight, (Missauke, 180, 205, 0)