I think I’m starting to notice a pattern in my shopping habits:
I like cute dresses.
I tend to favor the shops that have the kinds of prices that make it super easy for me to justify buying lots of stuff in one helping (i.e., ❤ Cupcakes, Fireflies, D!FF, Magnolia, just to name a few).
The more versatile the item is, the better.
D!FF’s new Isometric Dress, which comes in three color combinations, happily fulfills all these criteria. ^^
Clicking on the above image should take you to the flickr page where you can view a larger version.
The flexi-prim skirts have been given a flattering shape and the hem length is instant cuteness. The tops are provided on both the shirt and jacket layer, making it easy for you to mix things up with other items in your inventory and thus attain your own individual look.
The design of the dress is simple enough so that it lends itself to a variety of different looks, while the vibrant colors and the pattern keep things visually interesting and fun. Just add the right hairstyles, shoes, and other accessories, and you can go from a look that’s appropriate for a day at the park or the zoo, to a smart looking get-up for visiting the art museum. (Yay for coming up with scenarios for your clothes while playing dress-up ^_^ )
About three days ago I was looking at Machete and realized I was tired of always seeing him run around barefoot and wearing shorts and wifebeaters. Sure, he’s got a few clothing items: a pair of freebie jeans, a pair of chucks from KK Outfitters, a really nice sweater set from Nylon Outfitters that has more or less been worn to death, and a suit from Aitui that I don’t care for (don’t get me wrong, Aitui is one of my all-time favorite stores because they sell things like kukui nut leis and plumeria blossoms but the giant “AITUI” scrawled along the back of Machete’s neck on his suit collar is a bit of a misstep IMO). Still, I felt it was time to add a little more to his closet. 😀
An impromptu shopping expedition to the Japan sims was undertaken (seriously, they’re given names like JAPAN 01, JAPAN 02, JAPAN 10) and I was not disappointed. Stores I’d never heard of before, such as :sey, -=about=-, and Chase all yielded some fun finds. What made it even more fun for me was the fact that a lot of these clothes will work on girl avis, too.
All right, enough of my jibba-jabba. Let’s see some pics of Machete’s new duds. ^_^ Clicking on the images will take you to their respective flickr pages where you can view larger versions. SLURLs and credit info are at the end of this post.
Machete picked up this black jacket at a store called Chase. There are actually two versions of the jacket included in the folder: one with a white undershirt showing at the neckline, and one that has just the jacket itself so that you can layer another shirt underneath. Prim attachments at the wrists and at the collar finish the look nicely, and the prim attachment at the collar also has some flexi-prim parts that add some realism to the jacket. Machete also grabbed this triple hook pendant. I’m normally not a very big fan of these choker type cord necklaces in SL because I don’t care much for the way they float around the neck, but it works with this jacket since the prim collar masks the whole suspended-in-air thing that’s going on.
Another fantastic find: a store that’s simply called “-=about=-“. Machete bought the black suit set there and I loved it so much, I had to get it for myself. The designer at -=about=- obviously understands that people like me are fond of mixing and matching their clothes, because a lot of what’s sold in this store is loaded with layering options.
Take the black suit pictured above, for example: you can choose to wear the shirt tucked or untucked, under a jacket or by itself, and with or without the necktie since the tie is actually a prim attachment. You can also choose to wear a different shirt underneath because the suit jacket is also provided on the jacket layer sans white shirt, but please note that I did find two small white markings on the sternum area where alpha is used (see the left portion of the image above); wearing a white or a very light-colored item with the jacket seems to render the markings virtually invisible but they are there.
As you can see, the suit works just great on a female avatar. 😀 While a lot of this is owing to the way system layer clothing is applied to our avis, the lack of strong pectoral shading and definition helps. (Guys who deliberately choose to have a “normal” avatar that isn’t ripped, cut, and chiseled to so-called muscled perfection will also appreciate this, I think.) To help soften the masculine feel of the suit, I chose to wear a skin that comes with dramatic smoky eye makeup and red lips, prim lashes, red nail enamel, and an ultra-feminine hairstyle that is long and wavy.
In this next picture, Machete is wearing the military jacket and denim jeans also from -=about=-. This jacket is what really made me consider buying the men’s clothing at -=about=- for myself in the first place. The olive green texture is incredibly detailed and has that faded, ultra-comfortable look that immediately makes you think it’s someone’s favorite and oft-worn jacket. Denim items that feature torn and frayed details work well with this weathered look.
Once again, -=about=-‘s designer gives you options. Machete is wearing the “rolled up sleeves” version in the picture above, and my own avi is wearing the version that comes with full-length sleeves. Modifiable prim attachments are provided for the collar and sleeve cuffs. (Remember: always make a backup copy of the prim before you begin editing!)
-=about=- also sells a shirt set which, imo, gives a thorough offering of layering options that really ought to be the SL standard by now for both men’s and women’s clothing. The shirt set features a t-shirt that you can choose to wear either tucked or untucked, with or without the plaid print overshirt, and it’s up to you if you’d like for the overshirt to have long sleeves or rolled up sleeves. Hell, you can even wear the overshirt by itself to show off those nice tattoos you’ve got on your chest :p , or layered over another shirt from your virtual closet (provided that it comes with an underpants layer, but that’s not something I see very many menswear designers offering).
I chose the black and white shirt for myself and it’s going to go in my “! Favorites” folder in my inventory. Because I own a shape shop, my avi is often in a state of dress (or perhaps I should say undress) that isn’t considered especially polite when you’ve company… so I have a pair of shorts and a Tableau t-shirt in this folder for quick access for whenever I get unexpected visitors. This shirt makes for a nice and (very) cheap replacement of the Tableau tee. ^_^
This next picture shows jackets that come from :sey. Machete had actually stumbled across :sey in the Japan10 sim, but risey Arai’s landmarks all point to his main store in the Honmoku sim. :sey offers a good variety of jackets and coats, and the first thing you’ll notice about them is the detailed primwork with which they are adorned. Tiny prims, flexi-prims, sculpty prims — these jackets have got it all. If you’re not afraid of primmy clothing and you appreciate attention to detail, then these are worth checking out.
Machete is wearing the Riders Jacket in gold/brown. The word “gold” in the description refers to the metal used for this jacket; risey also sells a version of the jacket that uses silver metal. Nice to have that kind of choice, huh! The jacket comes with a double belt that sports lots of studs, grommets and buckles. This theme of lots of small metal pieces is repeated at the collar and sleeve cuff prims, and is offset by a mixing of different leathers (patent and suede). When you make the purchase, you are given both the male and female jackets, so there’s no need to worry about accidentally buying the incorrect gender version.
The jacket I’m wearing was simply named “leather jacket”. I chose red but it’s offered in all sorts of colors, and you can choose to purchase it either by itself or as part of a jacket and pants set. The leather texture on this jacket has a great glossy look to it and the winged skull on the back is a cool detail. This unisex jacket comes with even more prim attachments than the Riders Jacket, with a collar prim, sleeve cuff prims, and a pair of prims that circle the upper arms. Lots of metal is featured on this jacket as well, but in a less prominent manner; the metal pieces are generally smaller than the ones you’ll find on the Riders Jacket. The metals appear as both prims and as part of the textures; I especially liked the decorative zipper sliders on the upper arm attachments.
All told, I had a lot of fun looking at men’s clothing for my avi. There’s more goodies that I got at :sey that I’ll be blogging later; I’m going to have to start paying more attention to menswear from now on!
1st image: Jacket – Chase, Motocross JKT in Onyx; Necklace – Chase, Triple Hook; Eyes – Simtropia, brown deep; Hair – Naughty Designs, OC in Black Pearl; Skin – RaC, Aidan; Jeans – -=about=-, denim; Shoes – Shiny Things, Old Boots black (foot prims only)
2nd image: Melanie (left) ~ Suit – -=about=-, black suit; Eyes – Simtropia, brown deep; Hair – RaC, southfork black; Skin – RaC, Trisha; Manicure – RaC, Manicure No. 04; Bra – Armidi Intimizzio, Kawaii Flower Mesh Lace Bra white; Pumps – Enkythings, Talyn black / Melanie (right) ~ Shoes – KK Outfitters, Hi-Top Kool Kicks Women’s Black / Machete ~ Eyes – Simtropia, brown deep; Hair – Naughty Designs, OC in Black Pearl; Skin – RaC, Aidan; Shoes – Shiny Things, Old Boots black (foot prims only)
3rd image: Melanie ~ Jacket – -=about=-, military jacket 2tyep (yes that’s how it was spelt ^_^); Body Shape – Mela’s, pink lady; Skin – RaC, Sofia; Hair – Celestial Studios, Annie May III verdigris; Eyes – Simtropia, gray light; Glasses – Nea-Ban, Retro Standard; Skirt – Last Call Shoes – KK Outfitters, Lo-Top Kool Kicks Women’s Green Camo /, Torn Jean Miniskirt from the Yelena set / Machete ~ Eyes – Simtropia, brown deep; Hair – Naughty Designs, OC in Black Pearl; Skin – RaC, Aidan; Tattoos – Aitui, Vintage Hawaii *Full Upper Body*; Shoes – Shiny Things, Old Shoes brown; Jeans – -=about=-, denim
4th image: Machete ~ Shirt – -=about=-, shirt set; Eyes – Simtropia, brown deep; Hair – Naughty Designs, OC in Black Pearl; Skin – RaC, Aidan; Tattoos – Aitui, Vintage Hawaii *Full Upper Body*; Jeans – -=about=-, denim / Melanie ~ Shirt – -=about=-, T-shirt; Body Shape – Mela’s, pixie; Skin – RaC, Akisha; Hair – Cake, Rumour black; Eyes – Simtropia, stone deep; Shirt – -=about=-, T-shirt; Shorts – G.L.A.M., shorts from the Denim Jumper Set
5th image: Machete ~ Jacket – :sey, Riders Jacket gold/brown; Eyes – Simtropia, brown deep; Hair – Naughty Designs, OC in Black Pearl; Skin – RaC, Aidan; Jeans – -=about=-, denim; Shoes – Shiny Things, Old Shoes brown / Melanie ~ Jacket :sey, leather jacket-red; Hair – Cake, Nick burgundy tint; Eyes – Simtropia, blue deep; Piercings** – Zipz, eyebrow light metal spike micro twisted + nose titanium curved barbell + lip linked double light titanium captive steel rings; Skirt – ❤ Cupcakes, from the Black Gathered dress set; Hosiery – Blaze, Pantyhose charcoal; Boots – sf design, hi tuffs black small
** Piercings were originally three separate sets; modified and linked by myself to accommodate lack of sufficient facial attachment points.
One of my favorite things about playing dress-up with Second Life fashion is finding ways to put my own personal flavor or stamp on the clothes I choose to dress my avi in. Great blogs such as MichaMi Style Blog and Closet Crisis, along with their readerships, are a testament to the fact that this holds for true for pretty much for anyone who is into SL fashion.
Even with the multitude of designers in SL cranking out their products in a variety of textures and colors, however, if you like keeping up with the latest in-world trends then it’s still pretty easy to run into another avatar who will be wearing the same hairstyle, same clothes, same shoes… hell, sometimes they’ll even be using the same AO stands as you.
What’s an avi to do? Well, one great way to really showcase your own individual sense of style in your outfits is to tinker with the modifiable pieces that are in your virtual closet. Hair, skins, system layer items, sculpty prim attachments… there are LOTS of ways to play with your look if you have modifiable versions of these items.
I recently blogged about how sweater dresses are a current season staple in RL (well, for you mainlanders at least :p I hail from Hawaii, the land of T-shirts, shorts and slippers), and Last Call has the excellent Starley II Mini Sweater Dress set available right now. With five colors thrown into the pack, it’s already a real bargain… but when you consider the fact that everything is also modifiable, that just makes it even better. With a bit of imagination and time spent on editing prims and pushing clothes sliders, one can come up with all sorts of variations on this dress. (Important rule of thumb: Always, always, ALWAYS make a copy of an item before you begin editing it!!) Here are four different looks I came up with, all modeled on my soon-to-be-released Sturmer Harcourt body shape ^_^ (store credits and SLURLs are at the end of this post):
1) Modding Happy
This hip outfit layers the dress over a 3/4 sleeve black sweater and skinny jeans, cinches it with a velour heart-clasp belt, tops it with a smart looking cap and ponytail, and finishes it all off with pretty sculpty boots. To achieve this look, I made the following edits to the cream colored version of the dress:
- Shortened the jacket layer sleeves
- Shrank the sleeve prims, rotated them as necessary, and changed point of attachment to the upper arms
- Tinted the jacket and skirt layers grey
- Tinted the collar and sleeve prims a slightly darker grey to blend in with the system layers
The dress wasn’t the only item that was modifiable in this outfit, by the way! The right front bangs on the hairstyle (which came conjoined with the cap) were edited so as not to cover up the right eye; the black sweater had it’s sleeves slider maxed out; the jeans were shortened so as not to poke through the boots; the belt’s size was altered to fit the waist; even the lip color on the skin was modified. The only items that were not modifiable were the eyes, glove-layer manicure, and boots.
2) Long sweater layered over a skirt
Another chic fall look that layers the dress over denim again, only this time the denim appears in the form another mini skirt. The neutral tones of the sweater dress, tights, belt, and boots offset the dark blue of the skirt rather nicely.
The same simple edits that were applied to the previous example were made here as well, but without the color tinting. To accommodate the short length of the denim mini skirt, the sweater dress’s skirt layer was shortened a bit via the slider. With the introduction of a single new element and some fast easy edits, the sweater dress takes on a cool new look. 🙂
3) Bold contrasting colors
To change things up from the neutral colors I’d been playing with, I decided I wanted a look that was colorful and visually striking. I once read somewhere that the strongest possible contrasting color combination is black and yellow; I decided to use that contrast concept but tamed it a bit by pairing the already grey-tinted sweater dress in my inventory with yellow pieces. I wanted contrast, not walking bumble-bee, hehe. 😉
Very few edits were required to accomplish this look, and most of it involved color tinting. The scarf (which was a real steal, by the way — 7 colors for only 50L) was originally white and I tinted it yellow. I did the same for the tights, which actually comes in two parts (on the underpants and socks layers). Because the color contrast was already quite visually engaging I felt that adding more accessories would make the look too busy, so I limited it to the chunky hoop-earrings, which are scripted to change color via voice command.
4) Basic black
For this final outfit, I went with the trusty all-black look. Again, this was extremely simple and required very little in the way of edits — all dress layers and prims were tinted a very dark grey (as opposed to completely black, which would have washed out all texture details), and the belt was modified to fit over the hips. The sweater dress takes on a look that is simultaneously cute, casual, and feminine when layered like this over black capri leggings, and worn with a dainty banded hairstyle and ribboned wedges.
So there you have it — four additional looks pulled out of an already great set from Last Call, all of them achieved with just some really simple color tinting and prim edits. Thanks to modifiable pieces, with a little bit of imagination and time spent on editing, you can show off yet even more of your own personal style.
Where to find these items:
1) Modding Happy… Hair: Janine in copper from ETD; Skin: Celestial Studios Champagne Smoky Noir w/ freckles; Eyes: Simtropia greenish; Tres Blah plain black sweater on shirt layer; Boing Fromage black velour heart-clasp belt; LF (Launa Fauna) Ingenue jeans in indigo; Maitreya bloom boots in black.
2) Long sweater layered over a skirt… Hair: ETD Amber in copper; Skin: Minnu Model Fair SkinGloss(freckles) Teacher; Eyes: Simtropia greenish; Caroline’s Jewelry Lo Lo Painted Beads Bracelet, brown leather small; Last Call Yelena Torn Jean Miniskirt (pants layer and prim attachment, taken from the Yelena outfit); Last Call/vamp Liah boots, mahogany; Shiny Things brown strung leather belt; Paper Couture Plain Transparent Tights (underpants layer) from Barcola store freebie gift box; RaC Manicure 06.
3) Bold contrasting colors… Hair: ETD Lydia in chestnut; Skin: Nylon Outfitters Poppy Marked; Eyes: Simtropia brown deep; Imperial Elegance Woven Scarf – snow (tinted yellow); Blaze Pantyhose white (tinted yellow); Paper Couture overstated maryjane shoes, fedora; Celestial studios Lulu Chunky Hoops color change earrings; RaC manicure 11.
4) Basic black… Hair: Hiccup Slow Jamz 2007 in black; Skin: Insolence Lisa Tan Smokey; Eyes: Simtropia honey deep; Paper Couture basic hoop earrings (freebies from Barcola store); Fancy Schmancy slither belt; Girlie black leggings; Maitreya Sassy velvet Black wedges; RaC manicure 4.
I recently noticed that when I put a red dress from ETD on my avi, her butt seemed… well, larger. The same happened again when I put on a skirt from Nylon Outfitters. Later on, one of my friends confessed that she and her bf had actually had a brief discussion on whether I’d deliberately made it bigger or not!
We all put a lot of effort into the appearance of our avatars. Hell, I agonized for about two weeks just over what skin to get, as some of my friends can attest. Something like this, then, can be a bit of an annoyance, especially if it seems like it’s beyond our control.
I recently learned a great little trick for getting rid of the dress butt — it’s so simple, I don’t know why I didn’t think of it earlier myself.
1. Put on a non-flexi skirt.
2. Go to Inventory and look for your shape.
3. Right-click your shape, and select copy.
4. Right-click again, and select paste.
5. A copy of your shape will appear; you should now see two identical shapes in your Inventory.
6. Rename the one you are wearing to something like “Shape – Dress”.
7. Edit your appearance, and using the slider adjustment, set your butt to a lower number, as preferred.
8. When your butt is looking normal in the skirt again, select Save.
That’s it! Now all you have to do is remember to wear this shape when you put on a skirt, and then change back to your original shape when you’re wearing other types of clothing like shorts, pants, etc.
Now, if it were only that easy in real life! Hehe. I hope someone has found this information helpful. 🙂