Saturday, February 16, 2008

In honor of nap time

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This morning I felt like throwing on a comfortable t-shirt. Lucky for me, -Hiccup invented just the thing! It's soft and grey and feels like virtual jammies on my virtual skin.

Then I went to the Shiny Things group sale and got the Clara Slingbacks. Dunno why I didn't when they came out. They make me sing the happy shoe song, and the heel totally reminds me of Fluevogs. After that, I remembered that I wanted to poke around Second Mirage, and then there was that free hair from Truth...

...By the end of the day I was looking glamorous in my comfy t-shirt! I bet my RL self couldn't pull that off. If I start the day in a t-shirt, by the end of the day I'm in a crumpled t-shirt with coffee stains and child fingerprints.

Then again, this is why we play Second Life.

***Hair: Truth Jamie freebie! in black
***Skin: Another Fundraiser Belle Morte by Bronwen
***Earrings, necklace: Second Mirage Luxuriant in emerald
***Dress (shirt, pants, prim): -Hiccup Stripey Tank Dress
***Armwarmers: ~silentsparrow~ from the eventide set
***Shoes: (Shiny Things) Clara slingbacks in black from the group sale!

Big-arse skirt

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In the 1850s, the invention of the cage crinoline made two things possible. First, movement! Victorian ladies were now free from the confines of horsehair pads and inflatable tubes and yards and yards of underskirt. Second, skirts wider than VW bugs!

At the peak of Victorian skirt width, women had to squish through doorways, and they'd take down small tables at every turn. Crinolines were also highly flammable, meaning that the poorer class of women were advised to leave their crinolines at home before showing up to factory work.

I pondered social justice when I put on this new, puffy dress by House of Nyla. In RL, an outfit like this marks one as a member of the upper classes; practicality is for the working stiff. Lucky for me SL is a democratic place, and I'm not flammable at all as I pad my journalista's rounds. The movement on the skirt is light as air, too! Also, I went for a walk in Caledon VictoriaCity and the magical fabric shook off every speck of soot and trace of horse dung.

In this magical land, even us plebes can feel like can-can princesses. Here, I'm channeling my inner Zsa Zsa Gabor-does-a-period-film. Hello dahlinks! I'm lovely today!

***Hat: Mercury Morning hat -- sadly I think this store is out of business
***Hair: Mercury Bouffant 2
***Skin: La Sylphide Liliana Black and White - Noir (free at their shop)
***Earrings, necklace: Balderdash - Entanglement set
***Dress (corset in two layers, two prim skirts, and really sexy lingerie), shoes (with optional shoe sound): House of Nyla, Princess Onyx of Hearts

Friday, February 15, 2008

He cuts down trees

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I wasn't going to post again today, but then Tenshi Vielle wrote about her new boots and vest for men.

"I need that," said Ach the boy avatar, and of course I scurried online and got him a copy.

He looks like a stud. No wonder he gets into trouble. Just because of that, I forced him to dance around and sing the Monty Pythonn lumberjack song:

I'm a lumberjack, and I'm okay.
I sleep all night. I work all day.
I cut down trees. I skip and jump.
I like to press wild flowers.
I put on women's clothing
And hang around in bars.

*cough* -- That's not to say he doesn't look like a stud. He just shouldn't take himself so damned seriously in these hot clothes.

***Hair: Calico Creations Jack in midnight
***Skin: TheAbyss Scorpio_Dystopian[1]C Smooth
***Vest: [CRAP] Men's Fur Vest
***Pants: Schadenfreude ash stripe pants
***Boots: [CRAP] Fur Boots
***Belt: [OMFG] Balanced Gear Belt -- ONLY 1 L ! This shop is amaaazing, creamy's going to blog about it later.

Guest star: Morrigan Hyun

Morrigan Hyun of Elegance Hats; click for a larger image

Back in Victorian times mercury was used to cure felt for hats. This meant that haberdashers inhaled a fair amount of mercury while making hats, resulting in madness, of course. This is why Lewis Carroll's Mad Hatter was mad...

Morrigan Hyun, my fifth guest-star, is a haberdasher, but she is not mad. In fact, when I hopped over to her secret laboratory under her shop, she was the picture of cool composure in her sleek Audrey Hepburn-esque Ivalde frock.

"Elegance Hats had been open for two whole weeks when Neferia Abel stopped by. She offered me a place in her sim on the spot," Morrigan chuckled.

I can see why. Morrigan's shop lives up to its name. I can't pin her hats into one particular era, but if I could, it would be the late 40s and early 50s before women's hats went out of style. I could see them in a film noir, especially the hats with veils, sweeping forward to hide a lady's expression when she's feeling something she shouldn't be.

Can you tell a green field from a cold steel rail?
A smile from a veil?

For Valentine's day, Ivalde and Elegance Hats sent out complementary group gifts -- a sleek pink dress and an adorable gauze-covered bowler, resulting in an outfit that would've made Kim Novak proud. In this photo, Morrigan is wearing Ivalde, and her own creation, the Martha elegance hat in black.

***Hat: Elegance Hats, Martha hat in black.
***Dress: Ivalde
***Necklace: Second Mirage
***Earrings: Valena Glushenko, Diamonde
***Skin: Cryogen Lab
***Hair: Aden Breyer

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Happy Valentine's Day

Ach's boy avatar: Hey, why do I have to take the Valentine's Day pictures? It's not like I give a s*** about this holiday.

Ach: You know perfectly well why you have to take them. I saw what you were up to the other day.

Ach's boy avatar: *sheepish* Let's not talk about that. So this is punishment, eh?

Ach: Yep. You are playing the part of the shoujo badboy with a hidden sweet side, who is waiting on the beach for his tru luv to come along.

Ach's boy avatar: Is that what I'm up to? Aren't I a little overdressed for the beach?

Ach: Suck it up. This is your red Valentine's Day outfit from Rfyre.

Ach's boy avatar: I still look like I'm not straight.

Ach: PRETEND BETTER. And Happy Valentine's Day, ladies of the fashion feeds. =)

***Hair: booN TFH26 black small
***Skin: TheAbyss Scorpio_Dystopian[1]C Smooth
***Earrings: **Encore** Heavenly Cross Earrings
***Shirt, pants: RFyre from the Trammel set
***Jacket: ~silentsparrow~ morgan jacket from the set
***Shoes: (Shiny Things) Flare Oxfords in black

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Shop and think

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Curious Kitties is a haunting build. I've noticed that the best shopping sims are also interesting travel destinations, so that the means (the sim) and the end (shopping) become all synergistic. The new Silent Sparrow sim is like that too (you can peek at the new build, although it isn't up and running quite yet), but in an entirely different way. Curious Kitties is colorful with a twisted cartoon logic (think Polly and the Pirates), whereas the new Silent Sparrow is more like a Grant Wood painting. (Aha, it's blogged over here in Second Life Colors.)

While I'm writing this, my avatar is lying deep within a purple and blue hotspring in a dark land where the ambient light seems to ooze from the phosphorescent steam. The hot spring is in the middle of the swamp next to the shop, but the shop is just as glorious.

Sure there are the usual clothing displays, but if you head to the rooftops, you'll see the glorious tree that overshadows everything. It's got to be one of the trees of Lothlorien, considering it's height and shimmer of golden leaves!

Inside of the shops there's elegant golden scrollwork. Part of me wonders how anyone can get gold and black to look tasteful, but somehow Ameshin Yossarian does it, and I don't feel like I'm hanging out at a Chinese restaurant. Does it make me want to shop? Yes. Then again, there's very little that doesn't.

***Hair: Tukinowaguma Natumi in blonde and red -- store freebie
***Skin: Another Fundraiser skin by bossa nova, the silent vamp -- sadly, I'm not sure where people can get these skins anymore!
***Face heart: The Bunny Hutch, Lapin Paris Valentines' Heart
***Necklace: ::Violet Voltaire:: Gank Choker in black
***Tattoo: Ravenwear Vectors Tattoo
***Kimono top, furisode: SAMURAI SOUL & NADESHIKO SOUL, Kimono
***Dress: GG Couture, Wool Z Dress
***Boots: (Shiny Things) Sleek Laceup Boots 2.0 in rust

Guest star: Bambi63 Rehula

Bambi63 Rehula, creator behind The Closet

Today, let's discuss beauty, the asian aesthetic in specific. I was born in Bangkok and grew up in Hawaii, so I must admit that my own ideal body is closer to the asian norm than the western. The asian female body is slender, almost impossibly so compared to western women. Short. Small-chested and small-hipped. The beauty of the form lies in the spareness of bone, movement, slender thighs, and the long, lean line from shoulder to hip.

To me, asian avatars seem almost fragile. I've watched my fair share of anime and notice that the anime ideal holds true in SL. Large, pretty eyes, slender proportions, an aura of innocence. This holds true for Bambi63's avatar too.

Bambi63 Rehula is the Japanese designer of The Closet. She's my guest star today because she embodies a certain delicate aesthetic that makes me think of 物の哀れ (mono no aware)...awareness of the ephemeral nature of life. Yes, it puts me in mind of Elton John: It seems to me she lived her life like a candle in the wind...

Or perhaps I should put it this way: despite the fragility of life, still creativity burns brighter.

Bambi's outfit (jacket, scarf and skirt) are her own design from The Closet.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008


Have you ever made friends with someone based entirely upon their avatar's outfit?

I was standing in the massive lag that was MoonDoggies earlier tonight when I came across Ellantha Larsson. She was similarly trapped, and we stared at each other while we were frozen in space. Ellantha was in an adorable outfit of culottes and a high-necked shirt and hat and glasses and a lip ring of her own design, and I had to mention that I was a complete sucker for demure demi-Victorian.

Ellantha explained that it was a new release from Bare Rose, "The most expensive thing I've gotten from there at 200L," she chuckled.

"Can I take photos of you for my blog?" I begged, and Ellantha agreed.

I'm also in a new release, Fleur's gorgeous Shoujo skin. I'm going to keep it on forever, partly because it references one of my favorite manga, Paradise Kiss. So we logged out and back in at La Reina and commiserated about potty training while we took photos. Second Life, bringing restless shopping moms together.

While I was in La Reina, I noticed the lovely beach. It was the perfect place to show off another version of the Shoujo makeup. Now I understand why Creamy Cooljoke's little store is right on the beach! The lighting is gorgeous there with all the reflections from the water. Below is the Fleur Lotus Shojo 6.

I'm an enormous fan of Fleur (Tete a Pied) skins to begin with, and the second I saw the lovely wash of pink, I jogged my avatar right over. Both makeups suit my avatar very well -- tasteful, and never overly done or distracting.

***Hair: ETD Jared in black (male hair)
***Skin: Fleur Boutique Lily Shoujo 3
***Outfit: ~silentsparrow~ amour in dark pink, from the last last last sale
***Shoes: (Shiny Things) vintage pumps in black

Ach on beach:
***Skin: Fleur Boutique Lotus Shoujo 6
***Shirt: Canimal Mmm Strawberry! top
***Hair: ETD Deirdra in black
***Earrings: /artilleri/ valentine's day group gift, heart earrings in red

Ellantha Larsson
***Skin: Lovey's boutique skin (can't find this one, sorry)
***Earrings: Muse pearl earrings
***Hair: Miriel Eleanora hair
***Outfit: Bare Rose Steam Rocket Ride
***Shoes: Lassitude & Ennui Elizabeth lace up ankle boots in coal

Monday, February 11, 2008

I named the photo floofy.jpg

Today I taught class, so I dressed up my avatar in gothic beachwear. (It made sense to me at the time.) Okay, I lie, there is no such thing as gothic beachwear, or if there is, it wouldn't involve crinoline. But I am wearing a combination of a new shirt from /artilleri/ and a dress from the Crimson Shadows boutique (looks like Draconic Kiss to me -- and I admit it bugs me that the boutique doesn't identify the original designer). That boutique is going to be the death of me. It's full of my favorite style of uncomfortable and gorgeous, and the predominant color scheme is firmly mired in crimson and black. Yum.

The pretty hair flower also courtesy of /artilleri/, and I think it looks nice with Hiccup's Dungeons and Dragons hair. Mmmm, Dungeons and Dragons. Anyone else remember the new plastic and cardboard smell when you unwrapped the module boxes?

This disjointed post brought to you by sleep (little) and students (many).

***Hair: -Hiccup Dungeons and Dragons
***Skin: /artilleri/ lily (porcelain) *choco*
***Flower: /artilleri/ tropicana hair flower
***Earrings: Schadenfreude plastic heart earrings (store v-day giveaway)
***Dress (undershirt, prim skirt): Crimson Shadow Laure
***Tattoo: Canimal - Body Graffiti (asian theme)
***Tights: Sh*t Happens fishnet sockies in black
***Shoes: (Shiny Things) Mary Geos in red and black.

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Representations wrapped within fictions

Autopilotpatty Poppy, owner of The Gallery Tamrannoch, was nice enough to photograph a number of Caledonian women for an exhibit. The opening of the Exotic Women of Caledon Exhibit was tonight! I stumbled around the exhibit in deep lag for a while and gazed at Caledonian beauties in various states of un/dress. I also encountered...

Me. Well, my avatar. It's a little funny to see her in an exhibit; I'm used to staring at myself all by my lonesome on my land while I put on and take off clothes like some kind of rabid cyberpunk Barbie. It sure was an honor, etc. etc. -- and honestly, it was a neat exercise in representing "myself" as "myself" for a change, without the outside prompt of clothing to shift my avatar's personality.

What does "my avatar playing myself" wear to a gallery opening? My favorite fluffy Callie Cline skirt and boa (from the Ugly Duckling set), and my favorite new Carnival of Doom jacket (from the Zemfira set). I've reverted back to female, which means that I'm cold and manneredly again (with some relief after last night's walk on the wild side!). I'm also back to being mostly interested in frocks.

Anyway, go see a veritable rogue's gallery of cuties at The Gallery Tamrannoch. WHY? Because, you see, avatar representation equals identity in Second Life, and it's truly fascinating to click on people's pictures and see the fiction they've created for their virtual beings...

And yeah, that's me in the middle there. *shy*

Doing all right for country trash

My avatar put on his new /artilleri/ outfit, and it was like he turned into a hard-living bastard. He took my friend Heliotropic Unsustainable out for a photoshoot, and it rapidly degenerated into a trip to Hard Alley, followed by cuddling in his double-wide.

He'd like you to know that he has no sensitive side. He uses the bear to hide his stash, honest.

Heliotropic Unsustainable, his girl companion, was vastly pleasant about the whole experience, especially since it was supposed to be one of my guest posts with Helio as the star. She's a cool DJ, a fitting companion to a boy in /artilleri/ clothing. Her style is a mix of sci fi (Firefly) and sexy, and her ripped up, torn up aesthetic is an interesting counterpart to her smoooov personality. I say that lovingly -- she could talk Hillary into sex in the oval office if she put her mind to it.

Catch her DJ gigs sometime -- schedule in her profile.

Helio's outfit comes from Dutch Touch!

***Hair: Uemachi Masao
***Skin: TheAbyss Scorpio_Dystopian[1]C Smooth
***Earrings: **Encore** Heavenly Cross Earrings
***Tattoo: :FORM: Henkei Tattoo 01
***Wifebeater: /artilleri/ lucky number 7 tank top
***Pants: /artilleri/ jonas jeans
***Boots: Lassitude and Ennui Traveller's Boots
***Cuff: ~silentsparrow~ cuff from the bloody murder group freebie (go get it!)
***Teddy: Draconic Kiss Halloween Bear