. genesis .

So late in the week, I’m going to answer Berry’s monday meme at the end of this post – and also present a new brand in SL fashion scene.
Sundaara Designs

Sundaara’s store is already open, worth to take a very good look at it and add something super to your closet. Even though her outfits come in several colors, I chose to show you to black ones; anyway, take a good look at your favorite colors once you get to her store.

Sundaara - Baroq

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| Dress: Baroq (in clack) – Sundaara Designs
| Shoes: Kourtney (black) – {TARAshoes} by May Vayandar
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Inspired by Elie Saab latest creations in real life, Sundaara designed this amazing gown.
Sundaara - Ellie Dress

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| Dress: Elie Gown (in black) – Sundaara Designs
| Headpiece: Fascinator (part of Inkeri outfit) by Zibska
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Next and to bring out the sexy chic in you *smiles*
Sundaara Halter

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| Dress: Halter Sequin (in black) – Sundaara Designs
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Definitely worth the while to take a look at Sundaara’s store; these creations come in several colors; pick your choice and, of course, there’s much more for you to see and get fashionably chic.

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And well, this week has been so incredibly – I was going to say busy, but I prefer to call it “full” – that only today did I have my time to answer Berry’s last mondays Meme – Introspection. So, here it goes.

1 – Regardless of your current number, how old do you actually feel? – Good question *smiles* I’m 47 but, honestly, I have no idea what “being 47″ means in terms of how I feel. I’m the same person I was when I was 20, 30, 35; yes, more experienced and hopefully more mature.

2 – Which is worse, failing or never trying? – For me, never trying. No matter what the result is going to be, I really don’t like to have “what if’s” in my life; what if I had done that? ; do I accept this person in my life, what if I’m going to get hurt? ; so, I am totally okay with failing, but not okay with those huge questions marks over our heads , sometimes in my life. I just give it a go; does it work? Good. It didn’t work? Good too, one more lesson learned.

3 – If the average human life span was 40 years, how would you live your life differently? – Actually, nothing. I’m over those 40 years now *smiles* and good to 40 more to come. No regrets, I wouldn’t change a thing.

4 – Are you more worried about doing things right, or doing the right things? – I try not to be worried. I mean the term “worried” is quite heavy for me. What I do is just think if I do this who will I affect? Positively or negatively? Sometimes, I just don’t care, honestly. If the result is going to be “negative”, or I’m aware I’m going to hurt someone, I still do it. The most important thing for me is … whatever I do, I want to do it right, no matter what. I do my best to keep my thinking away from fake morals I was taught when I was a little girl, and if I have to tell somebody how I feel and know in advance I’ll hurt the person, I’ll do it. I accept the fact that I can be mean and I’m darn good at it! The opposite is also true, I’m good at what I do always, as long as I act according to how I’m feeling. No matter what. The right thing for me to do is be myself always.

5 – Would you rather be a worried genius or a joyful simpleton? – A joyful simpleton, no doubts about it. The word “genius” doesn’t mean necessarily have a high IQ… just saying ;) Emotional intelligence has proven to be more efficient that IQ measurement. And usually the words “genius” and “worried” don’t go hand in hand. Those we call geniuses are usually totally out of this world, disregard society rules, forget daily things that are routine for the most of us. So, geniuses aren’t usually “worried” people.

6 – Have you been the kind of friend you want as a friend? – Oh yes! Even more important than any romantic relationship, friendship comes first for me. I’m loyal to the extreme, my friends know I’m always here and if I cannot be at a certain moment, I will inform them. My friends know I don’t lie, I’ll tell them what I think or feel right in their faces, not in their backs. My friends know if they tell me something private, it stays with me. Fortunately, I have some people that give all this back at me; they are very few and those are my friends. The rest are acquaintances and I’m quite a social person, love a good chat *smiles*

7 – Do you remember that time 5 years ago when you were extremely upset? Does it really matter now? – I remember, yes. 5 years ago, 8 years ago, one year ago, 20 years ago. If it matters now? Yes, it does, I’m not going to lie. There is only one way for upsetting things not to matter; forget them (to forget means we got over them) . Honestly, many of them I chose not to forget, cause I want those upsetting things present, as reminders.

8 – At what time in your recent past have you felt most passionate and alive? – Oh so many times!! Ahh recent past, okay *laughs* This past week in real life, my goodness! *smiles* Right now I can’t talk about it, I’m still feeling that emotional rush of joyfulness, I kind of need to just feel it and talk about it only with my family.

9 -If you just won a million dollars, would you quit your job? – No, I wouldn’t. Work for me isn’t a burden, it’s a pleasure, that fortunately comes with economical benefits as well. I’d feel fortunate to win enough money to help my family and keep doing what I love to do.

10 – If you knew that everyone you know was going to die tomorrow, who would you visit today? – All my close family members, if possible, have them all together with me.

11 – What do you feel is the difference between being alive and truly living? – Being alive is just … breathing . Right? To live, oh that’s different. Doesn’t matter if we are in a wheel chair, if we are housewives, if we feel sad or depressed. Living is just being in the moment, no matter what we are doing – doing the laundry, watching TV, talking to someone, writing a blog post *smiles* – doesn’t matter. Living is just be very present in whatever I am doing. Just do what I do, every moment, in a very aware state of mind – truly enjoying simple pleasures of life.

12 – If we learn from our mistakes, why are we always so afraid to make a mistake? – I’m not afraid of making mistakes. As a human being, it’s logically impossible to never make a mistake. I do allow myself to make mistakes; I probably won’t do the same mistake twice, but I’ll make so many others. I know that, so, why fear?

13 – What would you do differently if you knew nobody would judge you? – Nobody is entitled to judge anybody; people are entitled to their own opinions, yes they do. I can accept them, agree or not. But judgemental people usually have more issues with themselves than with others. So, why bother? No, I wouldn’t do anything different. It’s their judgement, it stays with them. I keep my personal inner power in my hands and won’t give it away so easily.

14 – If you could offer a newborn child only one piece of advice, what would it be? – Well, he or she wouldn’t probably understand my words as a newborn, so I’d just look at him/her, admire the beauty and the blessing of a new life. I think the newborn would feel that gratitude, not in words, but through a simple smile. I truly believe his/her soul/mind/spirit/body will do the rest, once we offer them gratitude. On the other hand, being a mother myself, nothing like to be close to a newborn all day and observe. They give us more pieces of advice than we can possible give them as newborns. We just have to really observe them. *smiles* Newborns are excellent teachers for us … the grownups ;)

Thank you Berry for this thought challenging Meme!

. bushido .

Bushido 1

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Props in both photos:
| Tree by Storax Tree for Bloggers
| Rescue Deer by Storax Tree for Bloggers

Style Card:
| Sweater: Femme- The Red Queen by JLB Apparel
| Jumpsuit: Aikya (Gold/Red) by Legal Insanity
| Necklace: Weapon by FINESMITH (November Group Gift)
| Hat: Lauren Boho by Elysium for AVENUE Fall/Winmter FW.

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Bushido 2

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Style Card:
| Dress: My Wisdom – La Penderie de Nicole by Marcopol Oh
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It’s somehow expected that when we talk about Bushido, if we are aware of the concept of the word, one may expect photos of a Samurai or a warrior, since Bushido means literally “The Way of the Warrior”.

But what is life? Aren’t we warriors, every single day?
Aren’t there challenges, confrontations, conflicts, every day? We may not carry a weapon, we may not wear a katana like old Samurai did. We are the weapon in our lives.
The first “enemy” we face every day is ourselves.
Most of the conflicts created with others start with a confrontation within ourselves.

The deeper concepts both of Bushido and the well known “The Art Of War” by Sun Tzu are quite similar.
First rule and most important of them all – present in all martial arts: avoid conflict.
That’s why I admire the wisdom of the old and traditional East; they know that in a battle, nobody wins, everybody loses. It makes perfect sense – avoid conflict.

A warrior, that has been trained fully aware of Bushido, knows better, it’s instintive: avoid conflict.
A warrior that is well trained is naturally wise and knows that all it takes is one single strike to kill.

Let’s all forget those movies that portray Samurai, fighting like swordsmen in the West. That wasn’t the Samurai way.
Samurai were trained to kill in one strike.
The best Samurai used their katana once – one strike to kill. And those became almost legends.

As an admirer and follower of the Eastern ways of thinking, I can clearly see that we are all warriors. We fight. Every day.
It always starts with fighting ourselves. Before making a decision, any decision, we measure it, we struggle with it – wether we are aware of it or not.
This is as natural as life. And there’s so much to learn once we are fully aware of this.

Each word we say can be a weapon; each action we do can be a weapon. We are the weapon.

We all have heard people say “life is a fight” or something of this sort.
What if it’s not a fight? What if we make the concious decision of not fighting? What if we become Bushido itself and avoid the fight?

Seems easy to say and, one may think, not easy to do. True. Maybe we weren’t “trained” to do that. Most of us are brought up to think we need to fight to get somewhere.

Some people fight for attention – the lack of it in real life grows in SL; because of the anonimity the web allows.
Some people fight for any kind of recognition – again they lack recognition themselves, for real and they bring it stronger to SL – again the anonimity.
Some people fight for love – the lack of love in their real lives increases exponentially in SL.

These are just examples of the insecurities we all, at some point – bring to SL. They come with us, the real us.
To reach a certain goal – it can be attention, recognition, love – some people allow themselves to hurt others and they know it. That is a fight.

If our goal is just to enjoy ourselves and make other people’s lives better, in SL, there is no need for attention, for recognition and there is certainly no need to feel loved. Because we already have that within us. It cannot be found outside of us.

However, some “simple” things like living our own lives, enjoying ourselves on our own, joining a team of people that are positive in their thinking and are proactive, these don’t seem to come easily.
Here is where the fight happens: inside of us first and then thrown at others as a weapon. Without the proper training – by “training” I mean maturity, which doesn’t have necessarily to do with how old we are – there’s a fight, right there.
We just target someone and attack, because deep down, we feel threatened somehow.
The fight has started within, someone must “pay” for our unhappiness.

Sometimes we feel joy – embrace it.
Other times, we feel sadness – embrace it.
Other times, we feel anger – embrace it.

Whatever we feel, we should embrace. This is the way of the warrior.
Once we are aware of how we really feel, there is no need to fight. We are what we are, we feel what we feel – just embrace it.
Then, act with honor, respect others, face the conflict, measure it and just feel… is it worth it? Is it worth to strike that one strike to kill?

Some say the best defense is to attack. I’d say the best defense is to know yourself, to feel good about yourself, no matter how you feel. Just be. And then, don’t strike, avoid the conflict, extract yourself from that fight… cause there needs to be at least two to fight. Just leave the fight, especially when you are so aware that you can kill with one strike – the true warrior’s way. Measure your actions carefully in order not to hurt others.

An effective warrior avoids the fight, always.
Don’t fear solitude. Solitude is the way to really know yourself. Then, once you don’t fear being on your own (this is solitude, not loneliness, it’s a choice) you can connect to others without a fight.

Is the true warrior perfect?
Yes, he is. Meaning he is so aware of how much harm he can do with only one strike, he will pull back and refrain from attacking.
Awareness is self-empowerment. Be insecure, be afraid, think the unthinkable – just be fully aware of how you feel and how much harm we can do when we are in a certain mindset. Then, just ask yourself: is it worth to strike? If you are fully aware that your “oponent” can kill you with one strike, a fight is exhausting, time consuming, it unbalances us from the core.

In all matial arts and in life, all our strength is in our core. Physically, our core is around the belly button, around our hip area , down to the top of our legs. In life, the core is your essence, who you really are.

Again, I wonder: is it worth to strike? Is it worth it to fight?
The answer is up to each of us warriors out there.

. let me condescend you a little .

At some point in our lives, I guess we always have had someone tell us to be more positive and forgiving. Some people will tell you that all the time, in a very condescending way of informing us that they are, at some level, in a spiritual “higher” place, patronizing us.

Obviously, we all know that a positive attitude always brings the best of us and others.
However, there are moments when we have conflicting emotions. We are human beings, with a wide range of an emotional spectrum. We get upset, we have peaceful moments, we get angry, we get hurt, we care, we don’t care. We are allowed to feel every emotion, without having someone telling us to stay positive and be forgiving.

For me, this is the true definitions of a friend: someone who listens to you, understands you, in whatever emotional state you are in: angry, sad, upset, peaceful, caring or indifferent.
A true friend is never condescending!

A true friend doesn’t tell you over and over to stay positive and forgiveness is the way. And why is that?
Because a true friend knows you; knows how you manage your emotions, knows and respects you well enough not to be patronizing.
A true friend knows your abilities, appreciates what you do and makes sure you know it!
A true friend knows that, many times, we don’t need to be “advised” on the positive aspects of forgiveness.
A true friend just listens, without any kind of judgement.
A true friend shares and never lies to you about anything, whatsoever!
A true friend always tell you their own truth, face to face, without any fear of hurting you!

Yes, we can get hurt by listening to truthfulness.

What hurts the most is to realize that someone who you considered a friend for many years, actually wasn’t your friend at all; disrespected you and your feelings and keeps a distance, avoiding a face to face sollution, should any problem arise.
People that act like this, people that run away from you and avoid any emotional situation, these people have what is called in basic Psychology passive/aggressive personalities.
They seem quite peaceful, always in control and always have that “too nice” attitude, as if there is nothing in this world or any other world that can make them angry. Oh no, to be angry is not acceptable for a passive/aggressive.
They will run away like crazy from any situation that may seem confrontational, which is their emotional comfort and coward zone and obviously selfish too.

Anger, for my personality, is the surface emotion for being hurt. That’s my first reaction when I feel hurt. I get extremely angry.
Then, I find “my way home”, at my own pace, until I reach that point when I go deep and find the hurt inside, deal with it and finally, with time, everything is forgiven, simply because it’s completely forgotten.

In the end, forgiveness cannot be forced, shouldn’t be forced. It’s actually very easy to say “forgiveness is the way”; we look nice saying that, don’t we? It’s so absolutely condescending!

But the best is when we really feel it’s not really forgiven. It’s really forgotten. Only complete oblivion shows true forgiveness. We can only forgive what we forget, that’s the moment when we know that whatever was bothering us, is gone. We just let it go.
And this doesn’t come with any advice from others. It comes with a process within us, it may take more or less time, depending on us, on our life experience and our willingness to evolve as human beings.

It’s just unfortunate when you know somebody – or you think you know – for years and that person who you once called a friend, actually doesn’t fulfill some of the above and fullfills others.

Somebody you thought was your friend doesn’t share any of their inner self with you.
And finally you see that what you had was just a perception, not reality but your perception of it.
This shows how positive I really am, how I can blindly trust someone; how loyal I can be.

Until I can no longer trust.
Until that veil raises from my perceptive eyes and I finally see reality as it is.
Someone I considered a friend actually is not and never has been, according to my standards.

I was sad, at first. I have to ackowledge I defrauded myself; I did it all. I simply didn’t protect myself, shared my most intimate feelings with someone I considered a friend; someone who didn’t have the courage to trust me with the same dedication I gave her and didn’t share her most intimate feelings, just like I had done with her.

To be able to actually write about it makes me see it even clearer.
Just like love, true friendsipis a two-way road. It simply doesn’t work if it goes in one direction only.
I see that now, so clearly.

And after sharing all this with you, this is the emotional place where I am now: sad, extremely disappointed ( at myself) for making the same mistake over and over: trusting people and not protect my own feelings.

It’s never nice to realize that a person we thought was a friend, was nothing more than an acquaintance.

And now, because I love Astrology, let me jump on board of Berry’s Zodiac Meme *smiles*

1. What is your birthday and/or Zodiac sign?
My birthdate is September 8th, so my solar sign is Virgo.

2. Do you believe in or follow astrology?
I don’t believe in Astrology, because it’s not a religion, it’s not something to “believe in” *smiles* even though we find several definitions of Astrology being a “system of beliefs”, it’s not.
Astrology – the analysis of the position of planets in the sky in the exact time of our birth – is based on Astronomy and that is scientific. It’s also scientific and proven that the simple position of the moon affects tides, so it’s only logical that some planets’ position by the time we are born, may affect our personalities as a whole.

3. Do you feel your sign’s attributes reflect who you are?
Some do, yes. However, for those of us who love Astrology, we need to be well informed about it; we need to know our solar sign – like I said , mine is Virgo -, our ascendant sign at the exact hour of our birth – my ascendant is Sagittarius – and what are the effects that the rest of the planets’ position may have, when we were born. “May” is the right word here, I’ll explain.

4. Have you ever been to a psychic or astrologer either in RL or in SL (are there any in SL?)

Yes I have, in RL. I have talked to several professional Astrologers and had my birth chart made. If you are lucky to find a very good professional Astrologer, he or she will tell you that the features of your solar sign aren’t the definition of who you are. Other planets’s positons give you a wide range of possibilities and features as well. Astrology doesn’t tell you who you are, it will tell you – if done properly – your strongest points, your weeknesses and your potential. All these can take place or not. The best Astrologers will tell you that you have free will, ultimately, no matter what your birth chart says, the choices you make belong to you and you only. Don’t blame it on your sign *smiles*

5. Do you read your horoscope daily and try to follow any advice, recommendations or warnings it may have for you that day?

No, never. For me it’s a great disrespect for this thousand year system of reading the universe and us. Usually, a daily horoscope in a magazine or a newspaper is written by anybody in their staff, not necessarily by a professional Astrologer. They just take the writter that is kinda handy at the moment *laughs* which makes reading a daily horoscope a fun thing to do, knowing that the person who wrote is really having a good time too *smiles*

6. Do you have very strong feelings about astrology, either negative or positive?
I do, yes, positive in my case. I accept people talking about their solar signs, it’s fun and a great icebreaker in a conversation. I do that too. If I take Astrology seriously (which I do), especially recent Psychologists and Therapists working with Astrology as a tool in their jobs, well, that won’t come up in a regular chat about astrological signs *smiles* not for me, no. That is the part of Astrology that only a few really understand, because in the end, it’s not about our solar signs; Astrology is being used (finally!) in Psychology and Psychotherapy as a powerful tool for the person to have a more clear insight into their own selves – not exactly by looking at our signs, it’s much deeper than that. But, like I said, in a regular day-to-day basis, it’s fun to talk about our signs, what we think they mean and it’s such a great icebreaker!

Apocalyptica

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Style Card:
| Tattoo: The INKWELL Apocalyptica Biomech Lip by emanuelle Courtois
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In the middle of the night, when the angels scream,
I don’t want to live a lie that I believe.
Time to do or die.

Funny how some weeks ago, while meditating, I asked for clarity and I got it!
The truth has come out! I soo love my mind *smiles*

. Berry’s Intriguing Questions Meme .

Chrystal Finesmith

Chrystal - Finesmith

Well, before I start, I must warn you, I love writing, so… I may write a lot!

1. How do you deal with criticism?
Very good, actually. Both in RL and SL. It doesn’t matter if it’s what we call “positive” criticism or “negative”. Somewhere, I can always feel what’s the part of the critique is meant for me and what part actually belongs to the critic. All criticism is a two way road: there are, at least, two people involved. Parts of it belong to the critic, other parts belong to who is being criticized. If I take a critique “negatively”, I always ask myself – in which part of me is this touching, in what wound? Many times, I find out it’s the ego. So, I just drop it. All criticism is very welcome for me; I always learn a lot about myself, just by evaluating my own reactions to it. When people are rude to me, in a criticism, that rudeness is theirs, it doesn’t belong to me. Not worth it to even answer back.

2. What’s the most infuriating thing other SL residents do?
The exact same things people do in RL: to lie, to mislead, to manipulate. Easier maybe in a virtual environment, since people don’t really have to do eye contact and can sit comfortably thinking ” I can do or say what I want, because this is a game”. No, SL is much more than a game! Playing with people’s emotions in SL really infuriates me! I’m talking about romantic emotions; that’s why I’m the eternal single woman in SL. Men’s approaches are only laughable (sorry about that guys!). You know those IMs: “Oh you are gorgeous! You are so beautiful!” and I’m like “I know, right?”… and sudddenly the conversations stops there… any ideas why? *laughs*

3. Which SL resident would you most like to have lunch with and why?
Actually, I’d love to not only have lunch with, but go on a cruise with my AVENUE team *laughs* That would be something!

4 . Who would you say is your “anti” role model? Someone who serves as a warning rather than an inspiration?
I really don’t know. I could name some people, but just like in RL, there is always something about those people that teach me something. Just by them being “anti” role model, I’m already learning. So, let them come *smiles* . Bottom line is… in SL, we never know who is who… so they don’t know who I am in RL. And that is extremely interesting ;) “Anti” role models work as a true inpiration for me; because they exist, I’m more alert, more aware, more observant. They bring out some of the best parts of me.

5. What was something you used to enjoy, but was ruined for you?
Absolutely nothing! I don’t give others the power to ruin something for me.

6. What’s something you want to do that you’d be embarrassed to tell other people about?
No idea, really!

7. What’s the oddest term of endearment you’ve ever used or that someone’s used for you?
“Mexilhão”… well, I have to explain this *laughs* this is a portuguese word for .. a clam, I think. Only one person called me that as a term of endearment and really… to have somebody shout out loud “clam” that’s sweet, right? *laughs* I knew, right away, she was around and she had seen me, even in a very crowded place.

8. Have you ever fallen in love with another SL resident?
No, never. I’ve had one or two crushes, which is completely different from falling in love. The most important crush I had lasted a couple of months and it was back in 2009, I guess it started by the end of 2008; the person is no longer in SL. But well, I have to say that I don’t buy this “romatic love” thing in SL. I admit that people may fall in love, yes, but it has never happened to me. I’m definitely too sad and disappointed about people lying about their RL gender, pretending to be male, when they are female in RL and vice-versa. I mean, it’s okay to do this, I see no problem there. What is not okay is to engage in a romatic relationship in SL (which eventually leads to nowhere), and lie to their “loved ones” for a long period of time about their real gender. “Loved ones” … I mean, if you really love somebody – SL or RL – the best thing to do is to lie to them, right? What a way to “love” somebody. I’m sorry to say but this is sick! Only a very sick person does this! And I’ve met a few actually.  Then, we have the cheaters…  “love stories” that end because, go figure, in a particular week, one member of the  couple can’t be inworld, for several reasons; what does the other do? Well, let’s try some “pose balls” with somebody else.  “Why did this happen? Why did you cheat on me?”  “Because you weren’t here, and this other girl was very persuasive”… and I’m like …  are these people for real?  Sometimes I wonder why in almost six years in SL, I have never been approached for a “more serious” relationship. Some of my friends say I’m intimidating *smiles* and I take that as a compliment, of course. But I don’t think that’s the real reason. I think it’s really me not being open to SL relationships. I really don’t think “SL love” is possible, unless it’s taken to RL.

9. Describe a time/event in your slife that you’re nostalgic for.
Maybe the times when LL had the grid protected against criminals, copybotters and crackers? Yes, those times were better.

10. What’s something sweet you’d like someone to do for you?
Oh I’ve been lucky enough to have people doing the sweetest things for me. You know, I’m a loner in SL; I spend lots of time on my own, exploring, trying to build (which is definitely not my thing… yet *laughs*), visiting new sims, finding those cute little stores that nobody knows about? And while I’m just there, inworld, alone, I find something interesting, IM the creator or the designer just telling them how much I have enjoyed what I’ve seen in their store or done in their sims and to have, for example, a designer send you his or her entire collection, just because of my kind words, that’s … I don’t know… it’s priceless. For starters, because my intention is to really tell the person they have made my slife better , they could just thank me… but wow, there are really amazing people in SL.

I told you I write a lot *smiles*
Thank you Berry, for this Meme.

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Style Card:
Dress: Chrystal Reality (includes a beautiful crown, necklace and earrings) – I’m wearing the very basic version of the dress.
Photo with little PS editting, taken at Mad City – definitely worth a visit, what an outstanding place!

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. oh what a mesh! .

Mesh!
Amazing way of bringing into SL 3D models created outside SL, in third-party tools. As you all know, it can be anything, any object, any piece of furniture, complete avatars and, of course, clothing; mesh and rigged mesh outfits.

For us SL models, it really is a challenge, at this point, to showcase mesh items, because of the mesh specifications. In terms of clothing, we need to add alpha layers to some body parts and that has been quite a challenge for many of us!

Working with mesh inworld has been challenging , not only for models but also for SL designers.
Mesh outfits’ patterns and textures rez faster and are really unique.

And what can we do, SL models, when some of the alpha layers we need to add, really show up and make us look transparent – literally, in some body parts?

I was organizing my inventory one of these days and found a real treasure! I had it for some time but only two days ago I really understood how helpful this information is for all of us who are modeling in SL.

Marcopol Oh, creative designer of *La Penderie de Nicole* and *OH! Studio*, had included an extremely useful notecard inside an outfit folder I got from him, quite some time ago.
All of us will benefit from this insight into how mesh should be uploaded into SL and how all of us, customers, will gain a lot as well.
It has to do with shaping. How to adjust our shapes for perfect fitting mesh outfits. For designers and creatives, it’s incredible how it can help everybody to actually fit into your mesh items, without any complaint whatsoever.

Now, it’s the time when we all models say – wait a minute! I’m NOT going to change my shape! Or even retouch it. I spent so much of my time with my shape, had mine custom made, etc.
So, basically, we are really afraid or even tweaking our shapes a little bit.
Fear not! *smiles*

First, we don’t have to touch our faces or height – if you decide, as I did, to keep my avatar maximum height in SL [some SL models have decided to be shorter, as an attempt, I think, to be more "real"; "short" in SL is still a very tall person in RL; but my opinion on this will probably be subject to another post, soon.]
Let’s focus on how to shape our avatars to fit mesh outfits perfectly.
Allow me to share with you parts of the notecard Marco sent in his folder.

Some creatives in SL like Minnu Palen and Thora Charron (of LeLutka), Siddean Munro (of SLink), Elie and Anouk Spot (of Mon Tissu) and Jaden Celoe and Shay Sibrian (of Celoe), they all propose Standard Sizing and they all work with it.

Standard Sizing

This means that all mesh items from any of these creators and designers follow the exact same numbers, in terms of mesh uploading for SL, so they fit any avatar’s size.

Shaping is actually the secret here.
Or reshaping a little, because, actually, only some parts of our avatars are affected by mesh’s alpha addons.
Basically, if we all have the same numbers in some body parts, there will be no problem with Stardard Sized mesh clothes.

First, we all – SL Designers and Models – can get the 5 basic shapes fo free from Marketplace ( you will need to log in to see the pack of five shapes).

Remember, we don’t have to all wear the same shape and all look alike.
Only a few parts of our shapes need to be tweaked a little to wear Standard Sizing mesh or rigged mesh: Body Fat, Torso Muscle, Breast Size, Love Handles, Belly Size, Leg Muscle, Butt Size and Saddle Bags.

But by now, you probably have lots of questions, wether you are a SL Model or a SL Designer.
Here is the Q&A section of the notecard, from all the designers mentioned above:

- What is Standard Sizing?
- What is the purpose of Standard Sizing?
- How do you know the Standard-Sized shapes are accurate?
- Where are XL and XXL?
- Won’t we look like a bunch of clones if we’re all using the same 5 shapes?
- Where can I get these shapes and how much do they cost?
- What if my own personal avatar size doesn’t match one of the Standard Sizes?
- I am a creator. How do I make use of the Standard-Sized shapes, and how do I let my customers know I am using Standard Sizing?
- How do I let my customers know what Standard Sizing is?
- I create and sell shapes. Can I use the Standard-Sized shapes as a base for shapes that I sell?
(At the very bottom you will find the Standard Sizing measurements.)

- What is Standard Sizing?
Standard Sizing is a system created to standardize avatar shapes so that rigged mesh clothing can be created to fit most adult human female avatars and so that consumers will be able to objectively identify their own avatar with one of the Standard Sizes, enabling them to comfortably purchase rigged mesh clothing and accessories. We have created a group of 5 shapes representing the 5 most common adult human female avatar sizes in Second Life: Extra Extra Small (XXS), Extra Small (XS), Small (S), Medium (M), and Large (L).

- What is the purpose of Standard Sizing?
Creators and shoppers would benefit greatly from having a common language to communicate about sizing of garments and accessories for avatars. As a consumer, you can determine which Standard Size is closest to your favorite shape and buy clothing in that size. As a creator, you can fit your designs to the Standard Sizes, guaranteeing that they will fit a wide range of customer shapes.

- How do you know the Standard-Sized shapes are accurate?
The numbers we used to create the 5 Standard-Sized shapes were calculated using the results of a survey of over 500 adult human female avatars. The survey information focused on the following measurements: Body Fat, Torso Muscle, Breast Size, Love Handles, Belly Size, Leg Muscle, Butt Size, and Saddle Bags. Because rigged mesh responds to variations in Heights (including Height, Torso Length, and Leg Length) and Widths (including Body Thickness, Shoulder Width, Hip Width, etc.) on its own, these measurements were not included in the survey.

- Where are XL and XXL?
Based on our survey results, very few users identify their avatar shapes as XL or XXL. Limiting our sizes to XXS-L should make for an easier transition into widespread use of the Standard Sizing system. If a designer wanted to create clothing larger than Standard L, they absolutely could.

- Won’t we look like a bunch of clones if we’re all using the same 5 shapes?
Being able to express your individual personality and style through a unique avatar is one of the foundations of Second Life. We do not want to limit that any more than is necessary to provide a basic reference point for avatar sizing. Of the dozens of measurements that make up each person’s shape, only 8 of them are relevant to each of the 5 Standard Sizes. Even those 8 can be tweaked and still fit that size. This allows a person to largely preserve their original shape, with the added benefit of knowing their Standard Size, and being able to shop comfortably for rigged mesh clothing.

- Where can I get these shapes and how much do they cost?
You can download all 5 of the Standard-Sized shapes for free from the Marketplace here. They are full permissions, so you are free to modify them or use the numbers as you please. However, note that making changes to the following measurements may compromise the way Standard-Sized rigged mesh garments fit you: Body Fat, Torso Muscle, Breast Size, Love Handles, Belly Size, Leg Muscle, Butt Size, & Saddle Bags (We recommend that these measurements be changed only slightly, if at all).

- What if my own personal avatar size doesn’t match one of the Standard Sizes?
Your shape will most likely fit into one of the Standard Size categories. Since all rigged mesh clothing will probably include alpha bases, minor size variations of the 8 measurements listed previously will be will hidden, along with any glitching due to posing or animating. If this is not the case, you may want to modify your shape so that clothing fitted for a Standard Size will also fit you.

- I am a creator. How do I make use of the Standard-Sized shapes, and how do I let my customers know I am using Standard Sizing?
You can download the 3d files here ( http://dl.dropbox.com/u/6003454/Standard%205%20sizes.zip ). Once you load the Standard-Sized shapes into your 3d programs, you can build your clothing around them. Included in your download is an icon that represents your use of Standard Sizing. You can display this icon in your store, on your vendors, in your blog, etc. Hopefully, as Standard Sizing becomes more widely used, this icon will be easily recognized in the Second Life community. You can also have your store listed in the directory of shops offering Standard Sizing by filling out the form under “Stores/Creators”, found here: http://bloggingsecondlife.wordpress.com/ . Be sure to check the boxes next to Standard Sizing and Mesh.

- How do I let my customers know what Standard Sizing is?
Feel free to distribute the information provided here any way you’d like!

- I create and sell shapes. Can I use the Standard-Sized shapes as a base for shapes that I sell?
Yes.

A directory of shops offering Standard Sizing can be found here:

If you have any questions or comments please join the in-world group “Standard Sizing System”. This is a discussion group for Standard Sizing issues where you’re free to voice any concerns or suggestions via chat.

Below you will find measurements for each of the 5 Standard-Sized shapes:

-XXS
Body Fat: 0
Torso Muscle: 21
Breast Size: 32
Love Handles: 22
Belly Size: 0
Leg Muscle: 40
Butt Size: 24
Saddle Bags: 22

-XS
Body Fat: 5
Torso Muscle: 31
Breast Size: 48
Love Handles: 25
Belly Size: 2
Leg Muscle: 45
Butt Size: 34
Saddle Bags: 30

-S
Body Fat: 7
Torso Muscle: 35
Breast Size: 52
Love Handles: 28
Belly Size: 3
Leg Muscle: 50
Butt Size: 38
Saddle Bags: 33

-M
Body Fat: 11
Torso Muscle: 38
Breast Size: 58
Love Handles: 31
Belly Size: 6
Leg Muscle: 56
Butt Size: 44
Saddle Bags: 36

-L
Body Fat: 24
Torso Muscle: 48
Breast Size: 71
Love Handles: 39
Belly Size: 14
Leg Muscle: 69
Butt Size: 62
Saddle Bags: 45

Maybe you have already seen this info before, but it’s never late to remind ourselves again that to work with mesh or rigged mesh items, we need to work with our shapes, without fear of losing our identity. Personally, I was really amazed on how easy it was for me to adjust my avatar to the Standard Sizing numbers.
Easy and extremely helpful for everybody. Thank you Marcopol Oh for sharing this information, and to all SL designers that are working now with Standard Sizing for mesh and rigged mesh.

what a mesh

=========
Style Card:
| Dress: My Poofy Sleeves Dress (mesh) from a previous collection @ Limited Bazaar – *La Penderie de Nicole* by Marcopol Oh
| Shoes: Infra (red) – JD (by David Freeman) discounted now @ {Mes Brics a Bracs}

AVENUE Fashion Week 2013 – HAUTE . Sneak peek. Elysium

A Fashion Week is, by definition, a number of days showcasing designers that fashionistas don’t want to miss.

We all know that in RL, fashion shows are much faster than in SL. A complete designer’s showcase takes from 12 to 20 minutes max.

We are extremely proud at AVENUE for also doing this in SL. Our designer’s showcases are quite fast, considering SL limitations. Each showcase lasts from 25 to 45 minutes max.
Again, AVENUE is writing a new chapter in SL Fashion’s history, by doing this Fashion Week as close to RL as possible.

The last showcase of the week will feature several SL haute couture designers.
One of these brands is Elysium.

We all know Aleida Rhode and the work she has been creating for years. And we do know Luca Boucher, as well.
This dynamic duo released Elysium: a haute couture brand for men and women – including skins, hair and accessories.

They both clearly state that Elysium creates their own mesh in Blender or combining Blender with other 3D software – which means, completely original work, created from the very start by Aleida and Luca. A must see, of course!

This is Elysium Miss Dufaux Couture dress – nails included – and Fei (light) limited skin.

I’m sure you don’t want to miss the last show of AVENUE Fashion Week 2013, next saturday, April 6th @ 2PM SLT.

Elysium

Here is the Music Player. You need to installl flash player to show this cool thing!

what’s fashion nowadays (Diconay Boa optic).

Some come back to me and ask me this question. My answer? Simple.

Lately I’ve been observing Fashion evolution. I don’t know if I am the only one seeing the whole scene of it, but at my point of view, fashion turned out more… FASHION! For me, this means styles have been updated and some are still stagnated back in time, some developed a LOT. To have the latest stuff from designers, doesn’t mean you’re the best and you know all the fashion panorama, it doesn’t mean you are fashionable.

Watching fashion nowadays, we can see models turned out more simple. The exaggeration models used to handle some years ago, is not on scene anymore.

I see our dominant message being now more used than ever: Less is more. Unfortunately, some still need an update, not only on fashion but on avatar itself, because fashion demands it! The diva thing models used to have as a ‘tag’, doesn’t exist now. What’s a diva? That’s a past thing. Today fashion world doesn’t contemplate this word: DIVA!

What we see now, is a fashion filled with Minimalism, ultra editorial and ‘discriminating’ every kind of exaggeration. Some models became a good revelation, and I’m happy to watch them represent what fashion is what it is now. Other still get stuck on diva kind of thing.

Come on! We see on magazines, RL fashion weeks, internet stuff, that the ‘BIG ornaments and BIG diva looks have no place on what fashion has become.

Big hairs + Jewelry + Big Dresses or impact clothing are not to be combined anymore! What is to be combines is a fresh look, despising all the exaggeration!

Today a simple T and Jeans can be emphasized with a one earring that places a statement, to give this outfit some creativity. And a big dress that places a statement itself should be not drown by the ornaments added. And why? Cause simplicity is there, the Less is More thing.

Big hairs are used in High Fashion or Haute Couture shows. That exaggeration only fits on that kind of situation. Isn’t justified on another way, anymore! Why to teach a bind man how to see? If media and all the ways available to research and watch fully the evolution of the new fashion industry?
Answer: The ones that couldn’t see, are the ones that doesn’t want to see it!

I’m actually writing this post because many asked for my vision when it comes to fashion on this days, and how I see people!

I see this the way I wrote previously! And the people, I see! Yes, I see… But I would like to see more in less! ’cause that’s what fashion became!

 

<3 Dico

(Thank you for the input to write)

 

SL life Tutorial ~ In love or out of love? ~

And now, for something completely different at our and your Closet… life and love within Second Life®.

I rarely write nor talk publicly of my personal feelings about SL, people, life and/or love inworld. And today I’m going to.

As a SL resident since 2007, I only had one relationship inworld. We can call it a love relationship, yes. And this is what I’d like to share with you all.

Unless you actually know the person – first life – there is no such thing as love in SL. It’s simply not possible for many reasons. The first being, we don’t know who is that person we think we are in love with. So, it’s all meant to end, from the start.
I guess it’s alright when you want to have a fling or a short term relationship. But something is very wrong when we look for love inworld; or if you prefer, a long term relationship.

I mean, yes, you can look for company, you can look for somebody to be with you; but that’s not love. I mean, it isn’t real.
Or, assuming we are talking among mature people, cybersex. (There, I said it. And I have absolutely no problem with cybersex or those who are into it, I personally am not.)

So, this is my personal story in SL.
When I joined SL it was clear to me that I wasn’t looking for love – and I still don’t. SL represented to me quite a challenge, in terms of what a web platform is; and huge one, by the way. Lots of things to learn from building, to scripting, to… modeling yes *smiles*

Day after day, month after month – as you know time runs faster in SL than in real life – I didn’t have anybody to have a “serious” relationship with; I wasn’t hit on, as a female avatar. Absolutey nothing of this kind happened to me. So I have been single, which is absolutely fine with me. I spend hours and hours logged in SL on my own, doing my own stuff.

Talking to so many of my good friends in SL, some of them female others male, I was stunned when they told me that the minute they are single, lots of people start hitting on them. You should see my expression, in real life, sitting at my desk, in front of my pc; eyes wide open and thinking “why on earth??” or “no way!!”
That’s because I’ve been single for so long that it doesn’t even cross my mind to start hitting on somebody, just because they are single.

So, yes I dated once ( a date, really – I went out with a guy, we danced and talked; not much really) and last year I had a “relationship”. Obviously, it didn’t last and it was all ups and downs. When I now look back, logically, it all made sense. It still does. How can we fall in love with somebody we don’t even know, somebody that so many times doesn’t even have the decency of voicing with you or showing their face on skype?

And it keeps happening, all over SL, with some of my friends. But at the end of the day – every day – I wonder why do we allow ourselves to get hurt?

Very well, let’s play the “game”. In SL, we can get married, partnered, whatever in this realm of emotions. And it’s a game, actually. If we play it right, SL emotions just stay in SL.

However, is this what happens? Do we get personally affected by what happens inworld? Of course, we do! In this sense, it’s a dangerous “game” to play! People are getting hurt, for real!

What to do in these situations? I learned the hard way:

*never ever allow yourself to get emotionally involved with someone without having his/her face spread all over your Skype. Some people will throw every excuse they can get at you: “I don’t have skype installed, I don’t have a microphone, I’m in a place where I can’t use skype, I don’t have a webcam“. And excuses will pop up like popcorn in the microwaves.
If you find a person like this, run away as fast as you can!! *laughs*

They will probably show you their real life photo, to ease your curiosity. “Here is my photo” and you go like “wow, you’re handsome!” Yeah, right!
Really? So, no skype, no voice, no webcam, and one real life photo that can be googled or chosen among the several family member photos?!?
Are these people for real? Yes, they are. It happened to me! I bet it has happened to so many of you, as well.

Protect yourselves from this kind of people, if you are after something that is real.
Yes, it can be real withing SL. The unfairness of this all is when someone really attracts you or  someone  shows a particular interest in you, and both parts are “playing” differently, if you know what I mean.

The first thing I’d do, if I found myself in such a situation (again) is to make clear I don’t play “games” inside the game.
I’m a real person, that has a real life, sits at the computer (mine is a desktop one) and at the end of the day, logs out SL and goes to bed with a clear conscience.
Live my SL as I live my real life; be true to myself and others; and most of all, never ever act in a way that can potentially harm or hurt anyone, romantically speaking.

Am I a moralist? Religious person? No, not at all! If I were, I’d tell you and it would be my choice. But actually, I’m not!

My point is… this has to be fair for everybody. If you are the type of person – as I am – that is in SL like in real life, make sure that the person, who you feel strongly about, has the same presence in SL. Make sure the person shows you his/her face, voice, real presence.
If not, it’s okay to “play” emotionally in SL, as long as both people are having the same thing going on.

Just like real life, SL is a huge web platform where people are actually there, behind each computer. It’s a place for human beings.
What we see is an avatar. Wether this makes sense or not, the real personality shines through the avatar; through actions and through words. So, beware, not to get hurt.

That’s all I’m saying.
I’m not being judgemental; not at all.
Just make sure that if you ever get emotionally involved with somebody in SL, you are both on the same page. If  it’s just a “game”, it should be the same for both. If  it’s more than just a “game” – as it is for me – also make sure the other person has the same thoughts and feelings as you.

And skype, skype a lot. It’s free *laughs*
If there’s somebody in your SL that interests you beyond the game, please make sure to skype with the person.
No excuses at all! They don’t have a mic, ask them to get one, a cheap one, but get it.
Have them get a webcam.  See the person.

If they don’t do this within a week or less, it’s better you end whatever is going on and save yourself from a lot of trouble, hurt and deceit.

Actually, I’d like to know how you feel about this; so if you’re comfortable with sharing, please do *smiles*

Sea~~