Tuesday, 12 August 2014

For the HOARD! ~ Ladybug, ladybug, fly away home...

Another of my 'Wheee suddenly I have money, I can buy things I've wanted for ages!' return to SL purchases is this matched pair of necklaces by Maxi Gossamer, only available on the marketplace. The Sybil's Ladybug Amulet comes in gold and silver with a range of scripted jewel variants, two pendant styles, and matching earrings. I saw somebody wearing it more than a year ago and although I keep a very long wish list, this was one of the few things that stood out in my memory without needing to consult it. I bought it quite early on, and took the photos back when I was modelling my Illusions antlers, but went on to post other things.

Forest spirit musing

I love the play of shadows in SL but my computer really struggles to handle them so after this set of pictures I turned them off - or my PSU would probably have blown sooner! Still I love how this photo has turned out, you can't see the jewellery very well but it's a gorgeous, introspective pose and mysterious lighting that seems to weave a story around this woodland avatar. I have a fantastic book 'Yarrow' by Charles de Lint and this avatar reminds me somewhat of the mystical semi-deity in that story.

Roses and ladybugs

A clearer shot of the necklaces (without shadows) which I complemented with a different pair of earrings so that I could show these too; they are 'yellow rose earrings' by Sebastian Dionysus, who is the partner of Stars! Stargem Winkler, and has a store next door, so naturally I browsed a little; at first wondering why two competing jewellery stores were so closely situated!

Maxi Gossamer 'Sybil's Ladybug Amulet' long & short chains

Sebastian Dionysus 'yellow rose earrings'

The avatar in these shots is my Hunter Green outfit from the 2012 colour challenge, wearing Illusions 'Dreamcatcher: Rusa' antlers and Effie hair.

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Monday, 11 August 2014

For the HOARD! ~ Dancing with the Stars!

Or in Stars! jewellery 'Bouquet Blooms' to be precise, which was the fabulous prize for the Tiptoe Through the Tulips hunt this May. I wasn't doing the hunt, but Stars! is one of my favourite jewellery stores so of course I got the notice for this one. The set comes with a necklace and 6 pairs of earrings, with different stones to match the different colours in the necklace, so I put on one sapphire and one topaz (blue for the dress, yellow for me ;)

Stars! Bouquet Blooms jewellery
After struggling with the Tiffany outfit, I didn't feel like taking too much extra effort to showcase what could easily just be a close-up shot of the jewels, but they were too colourful for the black and white. I decided to throw on a dress at random and see how it looked, and found this 'Bluebird gown', a Boudoir group gift. Then I had a look through my Crazy Ass Hair Hunt files for something colourful and flowery, and instead found this 'Anemone' hair by Nevermind which matched the dress perfectly, and suddenly, with hardly any effort at all, I had a stunning outfit to really show off my jewels. I love when a post comes together like this, and I took the time to take a few photos and even put together a dance collage.

Perched prettily on my We're CLOSED log swing

ZOZ Slink nail polish applier 'floral solids' in 12 colours
(the dress comes with black gloves)

My favourite dance, weloveyou-girl from Sinewave
* Click to enlarge! *

Additionally, while I'm doing a Stars! post, here is the 'Iridescence' set in thunder - a gorgeous rainbow opal texture - which I purchased while I was tracking down the hunt prize. I should really have included this with the Tiffany post but I was having a trying day (the cat was sick all over child's bedroom floor and a plush toy, just as child didn't get himself to the toilet in time; it was one of those moments when you wonder just why you have either of them!) so I was rushing to post before I could settle down for what was left of the evening.

Stars! Iridescence (thunder) with Brii Tiffany outfit

This is going to make much more sense on Flickr, because I will post it first!

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Sunday, 10 August 2014

For the HOARD! ~ Breakfast at Tiffany's

This post showcases the outfit I got from Brii Underground Wear in the May 'Breakfast at Tiffany's' hunt, as well as a mix of old and new, mesh and old style prims working in harmony. I don't take part in many hunts and I hadn't heard of this one, but a friend found this prize and I loved the jacket, so I just made the one stop.  It was a well designed clue, for which I give Brii props! The designers tried to make things in theme with the well-known film starring Audrey Hepburn, and I tried to stick with it in my choice of accessories. The Brii outfit includes mesh jacket and skirt, hat, sunglasses and shoes, also some make up which I didn't use as it's completely wrong for my face shape.

A fountain, not an erupting volcano, shot against
[TOR] Sunrise - Eye of Mowron.
The fountain was made and gifted by a friend, Xixao, back in the earliest days of SL (we graduated together from Help Island) and although it's a little primmy, I still think it holds its own against all the newfangled mesh. I'm on a retro decorating mission at the moment, to prove that there are many things made in the early days of SL which withstand the test of time, and to defend my hoarding impulses. I have the prims to do it, now they aren't being hogged by my castle! The 'Butterfly Kiss' chair is from the other end of the spectrum, a mesh design by another friend, still available at Angelic Designs.

Breakfast by the lake (Nacon's Natural 8am sky)
Another [AD] design, I just purchased this 'Solas' tall bistro set (tea things included); I've been looking for some pretty wrought iron garden furniture for I don't know how long and this seemed just perfect for breakfast by the lake, coming up on sale at an opportune moment as I got around to nearly the last of my May hoardings. The little pink bird perched on the other chair is by HPMD. My legs look pretty good in this shot, but if you look closely you can see some colour discrepancy between the legs and feet. The Tiffany shoes are very pretty but I'm afraid I have an axe to grind with shoe designers who don't provide for the full colour spectrum of skins. This is the palest the feet will go, and only 5 base skin colours were provided in the HUD, none of which were white. A white skin tone is absolutely critical for people who wear pale or exotic skins, if they are to match the feet, so I doubt these shoes will be seeing the light of day again. Somewhat amusing, given this gripe, is that the shoes have a typo so they are named peeptoe Hells!

bewildebeest 'Alma' jewellery, Free Speerit 'Elise' hair
and sky (lighting) Places - Cromac
I have got to say, I hate hair. It's an absolute pain in the **** when it comes to hats, and mesh is no good at all because you can't change it. After a great deal of dissatisfied inventory trawling and primping (modding all the bits which stick out), I rediscovered this rather charming style by Free Speerit, called 'Elise'. I have no idea if the store is still around, as the hair is rather old, and pure default prim - not even any flexis! - but it worked a treat, I didn't even have to hide any stray locks, and the pinned up look suits Tiffany reasonably well. I need to find some more hair that works with hats, as I have so many and they are always hard to fit, though the toppers I get from TMH generally perch well enough on top.

Tiffany must wear diamonds, of course, so I put on this lovely filigree jewellery, 'Alma' from a fabulous store, .( bewildebeest ). which sadly closed its doors some years ago despite her exquisite prim designs. I am using an Amacci skin, 'Oleana' from a past Peace hunt, with 'Tribal' make up and 'Ain't Me' eyes from DAMNED.

{ZOZ} 'Wild black gold' nail polish in Dalmation (SLink applier)

Finally, a close-up shot to show off the Alma ring and my nails, sporting this gorgeous and exotic nail polish from {ZOZ} which I stumbled upon completely by accident as I nipped into the Relay For Life fashion event in June. There are 12 designs in the set, for hands and feet, in a variety of animal prints including some reptilian green scales! I got the SLink mesh nails, rather than the full hands, because I'm not quite ready to go full mesh on those; 'natural' hands look perfectly fine (compared to the feet...) and their flexibility is required for certain poses and animations. I know mesh looks smoother in photos but when people are moving around, I find it makes them look a bit like animated puppets, not to mention all the issues with clothing, so I'm not very keen on mesh body parts, apart from my feet (and hair of course, and the 'additions' like nails, fangs and tails!) I am sure I am starting to look quite thoroughly retro when I go out, though the amount of mesh hair and clothing I wear probably saves me from complete disgrace. Though I will say, all this mesh caused my computer to blow up - I had to get a new graphics card to handle it, and as it turned out, the PSU (power supply unit) was no longer up to the task. I logged on a couple of days ago and it went 'phttt' in clouds of smoke... Now I have a new PSU, cooling unit and larger, quieter case - all to maintain my shiny hoard and this blog!

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Friday, 1 August 2014

For the HOARD! ~ White Queen

This ALWAYS happens... One of my favourite stores had an outfit out for the Month of Games, which ended yesterday (sorry) - the triple theme was Chess, Clue (or as we call it in the UK, Cluedo, don't ask me why) and Candyland. Since when candy was a game genre I do not know, but there we are; or were.

The Month of Games Shopping Event
It looked as though there were some pretty fun activities over the event, including a murder hunt in the Clue zone, which I'm sorry to have missed, but I was operating on my 'don't go until last minute then you won't be so tempted to buy stuff' principle - like THAT ever works! I did buy the outfit I went for, but I have an idea how to showcase that which I haven't got around to yet, so, later.

What I ALSO bought was possibly the most expensive dress in my entire wardrobe, after spotting it on an ill-advised sweep of the vendor boards, and falling instantly in love. All the items in the Chess section were themed around the game, and I chose this "Chess" dress by Son!a in ivory, because I liked the gold accents, and that much pure white would have made me feel like a bride. It is a stunning dress, with a huge pouffe of chiffony, flexi train, a tintable fur stole, and fun but elegant attachments in the style of the chess rook, the castle.

Son!a "Chess" dress with Boudoir "Chess Queen Battle"
I also bought this beautiful "Chess Queen Battle" table set by Boudoir, with linked chairs for the opposing players. The board animates on touch to play out part of a chess game - I couldn't see an endgame, but it moved so quickly, and I'm only a chess amateur, I could have missed something; I must get Nadir to look, my hubby being a bit of a chess whiz!

I have been showing my dress off to every friend who will spare me a minute, and Suzari here immediately put on hir Illusions "Harlequin" outfit and said I needed a jester, which was awesomely apt for playing my black opponent - Game On! I have no idea of Suzari's skill at chess but it's probably better than mine, so I'd likely lose, but that's OK because jesters have a work mandate to put royalty in its place ;)

Bamboo "Chess" nails (queens)
Additionally, I picked up this fun set of SLink nail polish appliers by Bamboo, to accessorise. They come with little queens, knights or pawns, or you can have them in plain chessboard style, which I did for my feet.

And here are just a few more pics:

White Queen vs Dark Jester

"Alice, my dear, do you play?"


Necklace: "Dulce Gold" by Vintage Jewels (just purchased; members only)
Hair: "Song" in 'mad' pack by !Lamb for the June round of Collabor88
Skin and make-up featured in previous post; they looked so good I didn't bother changing.

Incidentally, Son!a wins a bunch of brownie points, because I was rather disappointed to find after purchase that the rook attachments were set at full-bright, and no-mod; and as I like to use natural lighting, and often wander about at night or in the darker windlight settings, full-bright can be as intrusive as neon. I sent an offline IM asking if she would mind resetting the textures and sending me a new copy and got them within a couple of hours - now there's service! I had been steeling myself for a snippy 'sorry, that's how I made it, like it or lump it' attitude but clearly Son!a values her customers. So now, the dress is perfect, definitely worth what I paid for it, and I suspect I may be wearing it quite a lot in between photo shoots. Obviously I like all the outfits I buy, but this one really feels 'me'. I probably ought to hunt out some shoes, I think I have just the pair from L&E...

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