Friday, August 31, 2007

Today Carnivale saw a bit of drama O.o some pirates got a little too rowdy, started attacking customers and put up a couple of absolutely enormous megaprims on Lady Mask with really disgusting pictures on them. I was out to dinner at the time, but the marvelous and heroic Candy handled them calmly, told them to leave, and then documented the whole thing extremely thoroughly so I was able to ban the lot of them. If any of them are reading this... well you're welcome to IM me and see if I can be swayed, but you've been very naughty.

I've been working steadily (with interludes, but at least remembering to go back) on jewelry for the Jewelry Exposition. I have the revised Entranced and Gothica all set and ready to go, along with five new designs (so far). I think this is the first time I've ever delayed a release that I'd finished for a big date! Ooo feels cool! I still would like to complete an auction piece for the American Red Cross... one of the big events of the expo will be a charity auction of limited or exclusive jewelry pieces donated by designers. The theme is celestial, so I just have to get inspired (starry eyed?).

I had a fun idea, brought on by Mourna Biziou, that I should create "signature" pieces (she said "T-shirt", I heard "jewelry") similar to what Jackal Ennui and Alienbear Gupte have out as freebies. I've also had the most wonderful idea for a jewelry demo thing... and lol it's almost worth the trouble of doing demos for the necklaces because it's darn hilarious. Well, endearing anyway. Ok, chuckle-inducing. But it would be so much trouble >.<

I also joined Second Citizen (also Mourna's fault). It's an offsite Second Life community with forums and... forums. Oh, and they also have forums. I was a little distrustful, since I'd only ever seen drama there, and I have an aversion to forums in general. (Nrrr they're gonna hurt me o.o) but I did my "welcome to Second Citizen thing" and people actually knew me!!!! That was cool O.O and surprising!! and awesome! Omgosh I'm fa-moose!!

Lol why are you guys reading this? XD Hoping for yummies? Ok ok ok ok here's a preview:

I'm gonna maaake...

Oh wait... I already maaade...

Jolly Roger jewelry. Oh hell yeah.

Thursday, August 30, 2007

New Event Hall! Wee!

When a girl buys a fabulous new dress, it is simply inevitable that certain things happen. One of them being that she buys things to turn it into a perfect ensemble. First comes the dress... then comes the shoes, a necklace, a hat... Once something new and wonderful arrives, everything needs to match. This apparently also applies to architecture O.o

Ok maybe not always, maybe it's just me, but the new store demanded a new event hall. So today I made one! Quite a beautiful, enormous, palatial, roman-inspired grand edifice that is just... huge. Well not that huge, you're still able to talk to people inside, but seriously this thing feels just a wee bit roomy.

Something I especially love, just as I loved with the original, is the grand entrance. I wanted it to make you feel like Cinderella seeing a palace for the first time ^_^ And this time, the entrance is even grander! (and matches the store! *giggles* are these "island accessories?").

Ok now... I know what you're wondering. What happened to the fish? My wonderful fishy floor, with enormous fish circling underneath and you being able to go "oo! I hope I don't fall in! Those koi are big enough to eat me!" Well, right now they are in an absolutely enormous plastic baggie, and they will be relocated to the lake underneath the waterfall, where hopefully they will be quite happy. Let's just say it's freshwater, shall we?

I've actually made it have two levels, so it wouldn't feel like a monstrous cavern. However, I just had to open up the upper floor for a delicious view of the incredible stained glass window high above...

On the upper floor... I don't know, I had this image of an enormous, beautiful and decadent place for dancing, but also another alcove for a smaller venue, like a live music area or a "coffee shop" feel. I have an idea for a beautiful open patio for viewing fireworks, but I wanted something casual and inside, that wasn't in the store area. Since we can fly, we can just hover up to the upper floor and have a beautiful view of the island. I think I'll be placing some columns in there to make the space feel a little more closed, or maybe just furniture will do the trick.

I know there's been quite a bit of upheaval on the island lately, and it's very probable there will be even more. I really want to thank everyone for trusting in the Siyu to make only improvements, and if you don't... well.. erm... you can tell me what bits you'd miss the most and I'll try not to get rid of them. Just like to say, thank you for your patience, and understanding with CCRS (Content Creator Restlessness Syndrome). I finally understand what got into their heads now when they changed things everyone else was perfectly happy with o.o

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Right now, if you end up going near the event hall, you'll see quite an odd sight; I'm redoing it right on top of the old one, literally. I really liked the style of the new store, and there are some irritating architectural issues in the old hall as well. I like the design, but again, it could use some improving. I also terraformed the other half of the island, because when I logged on today I was tired enough that I wanted to fly around and do something vaguely productive. Or procrastinate, tomayto-tomahto.

I put out something fun, there have been a couple of little things I've added to the store that I didn't bother mentioning, but I will now!! For the Civetta and Columbina masks (the plain ones) I've now added "Party Packs", that you can buy for 550L. They contain ten transferable copies, 7 in a very tintable gray color, and 3 white, so you can pass them out to party guests and they can tint them to match their outfits ^.^

I also added a new freebie box to the freebie shelf, front and center, which I have titled simply "Victims of Siyu's Rabid Perfectionism". These are items that, at some point or another, were released, and then discreetly pulled by me in a fit of "these aren't worth money!". Instead of just letting them get moldy in my inventory, enough people poked me about the items to warrant a sort of apology pack. So that mention earlier about those items I sneakily pull off of the walls... I found what to do with them ^_^ You can now own such old favorites as The Blazing Crown of the Empress Phoenix, the Ascended Mitra, the Rana veil and a whole bunch of old non-sculpty hats and just for one little L. People seem to be having a lot of fun with them :) I'll probably be adding more next time I clean out my inventory, so keep an eye on the box and check if some thing's new. With most of these items, there are problems with it that would only bother me, but I wouldn't be the creator that I am if I let that persuade me to put them out! There are little things (like the Rana veil, it bothered me because there was no connection between the cloth and the tiara piece) or just dated things (like non sculpty cake hats), but in the end I knew they could be enjoyed by people not anywhere as near as picky as me XD

Also, some wonderful news... I might be able to have the chance of possibly finally finding feather textures I can be happy with. There's a reason you haven't seen feathers on a single mask of mine since '06, and it's because the aforementioned perfectionism extends to others' work as well. However, I have found someone with feathers that finally meet up to my high standards... now just to convince her to sell them XD (don't worry, she said have hope, I just have to wait a bit).

Speaking of waiting, I announce proudly to the world that I will refresh Nicky Ree's blog about 18 times a day until she puts this out in another color:


Monday, August 27, 2007

Primal Hawk

Yesterday I mentioned in an offhand manner that I beta-tested some hair on my Gods. Well, today I cleaned it up a bit, made some edits, added a size option, and set it out for sale.

This actually is a style I made for myself, and passed around to a couple of friends. But we got so many questions about it that I realized it wouldn't be too bright of me to not put it out! This is another item confirming my "bald women" fixation. Come back to the era before hair stiffening thingies! I'm completely fed up with sticks poking up out of scalps, and mohawks that look like they require a gallon of gel to maintain. Fauxhawks, (with hair at the sides and just a raised center) are delicious and another fun thing that I consider myself a connoisseur of... but I wanted something to show off my head tattoos and how good Siyu looks bald. I had an image of this beautiful streak of flowing, rich hair, and it works so wonderfully in so many situations. It's extremely exotic. I didn't want to show off my beautiful Selostastic head tattoos this time, because I wanted to portray how it would look on someone else as well. (Not everyone is as fortunate as me to have such awesomeness.) I think you'll find that the hair moves beautifully, or at least it does on my computer... (I had a report from someone with an absolutely kickass system that the hair moved too much, but if you do have such an awesome system, you can probably fiddle with the flexi settings). Don't take my word for it though, try out a DEMO!! Yes!! I've made my first demo! Here in this picture, my friend Tea Panhandle is modeling it:

The words over head say "You look like a work of aht, dahlink!". Tea tells me I might have completely defeated my purpose in the demo (which is of course to make you want to buy the hair), in making the demo too much damn fun to wear around. She says its grown on her, and that she probably won't take it off. Thank god I put my little banner up on top, at least she'll be doing some advertising XD

On another note, the hair comes in these lovely delicious flavors:

The Gods said they didn't miss the natural colors so much, and that the white was very tintable. Air seemed to be the favorite color (the light blue). These are the hair textures (slightly modified) from X3D. I picked out my favorites and edited a couple to make them favorites. ^_^ The hair comes in two sizes, and is just 75L each or 300 for all 10 colors ^.^
Dear virtual diary:

Today I made some alternate colors for a fun little hairstyle that I made for myself, but got a lot of compliments about. I did a little test release and passed it out to my Gods, and so far they love it! They've given me some wonderful feedback and so I think I will be releasing it. Wow, me making hair! I didn't see that one coming.

I also have some Flickr pictures to share! I visited Bare Rose, and found a rather deliciously sexy outfit that looked surprisingly amazing in snapshots. I did the shoot for other reasons than just showing off (which I'll let you know about very soon), but pretty much every photoshoot any of us does always ends up just being "oohhh wow... my avatar is a work of art".

These were taken wearing the beautiful and very gothy new outfit from Barerose, called Stheno. It comes with a big gothic Lolita type bonnet, but I found it definitely against the look I was going for. Isn't black and white just delicious?

The mask I'm wearing is just a modified Titania, but what I wasn't expecting was the really neat anime-ish effect it has on the hair. The leaves around the base of the crown make it almost look like the cartoony shine effect, which I think really works very well in these . Fun and random effect!They're for the most part, completely unadulterated. I shot them against a plain purple background (as white wasn't exactly going to work), removed the purple and then put it against the Eliza Stripes, if you recognized them! I desaturated the whole thing just to make absolutely sure there was no color left, and re-framed them as I saw fit :) I really do love how they turned out.

Friday, August 24, 2007

Volto Puro

The new store is officially up and settled in!

The skull items are on sale, the new build is settled in... and I'd like to celebrate with the release of a pair of masks that have been more than two months in the making. The reason I have not released a single mask, nor been able to work on one in all of this time... is that I simply had to finish these first. I've been wanting one ever since I first came to Second Life, and I finally have one. Please say hello to perhaps a familiar unfamiliar face: The Volto Puro.

Volto in Italian roughly translates to "countenance", or an expression of the face. Variations of the volto are one of the most common Venetian masks, and if you find any picture of the modern Carnivale of Venice you'll find almost everyone wearing one of these (and the most amazing headdresses). Puro means "plain" or "pure", which is an omen of more variations to come, as you can guess. The Volto Puro represents my jumping off point, for an almost infinite field of variation! Hence why it took me so long and why it was so important for it to be absolutely exactly right. Maschio simply means "male", as well as "femmina" meaning female, as I suppose you might have guessed. The Femmina has full lips and a tapered, heart shaped face, while the male has a stronger jaw, narrower lips and a bit more of a pissy expression. Grrr aaarrr man! I had quite a bit of fun on the textures for these...Curious about those 9 variations?

These are a little different from my usual range of selection. I might add a few more if I think of them, but I love the play of black and white, the metallics look like molten metal (ooo delicious), and I love the effect that the designs have on the mood of the mask. I especially love the "scarred" design (the tear streaks) for the harlequin set!

I'd also like to mention that this is my 100th post! WOOOT!! I've had this blog not too long, and already 100! Not too shabbay.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Real life has been stealing me away, and basically only leaving a few moments to log on and check my IM's and then zip.

I got an IM recently though, that was asking about where the Blazing Crown of the Empress Phoenix went, and I was reminded of something I didn't catch myself doing. I seem to have a bad habit, that when I remodel I wordlessly shed some of my "worst pieces". These are the things that I've found progressively inferior to my current abilities. So when I start editing my store, moving things around, making space for the new items, sometimes I'll take a vending object to inventory and just never be motivated to put it back out. To tell the truth, with the exception of a couple of the creature masks, I think every one of my pre-sculpted masks should be redone and revisited and revised, if not completely scrapped. I still do think that the death set kicks major patootie, but I'm seeing now that my prices (1175?) are ridiculously high.

I'd like to retire the skull things for review, and re-release them for October with sculpted prims, new textures and revised designs. I'd also like to retire about 70% of the old Illusions vendor as well, but I think I'll wait until my mask inventory has been padded more by more sculpted pieces.

So, to celebrate the opening of the new building, and the future revision of the skull thingamies, I've decided to have my first retirement sale ever! I'm going to be placing the skull vendor out front, and everything in it will be....

Drum roll please...


The sale, I've just randomly decided, will begin sometime Friday (I'll announce it to the group) and end midnight on the evening of Sunday. So it will run the weekend, and after that the skull vendor will be deleted and you won't see skulliness until October! Tomorrow will also be the day that the old building dissapates into the misty air of Carnivale, and the new store descends from the sky. Sounds like some sort of fantasy movie.

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

I've been working on a new store model the past couple of days. The old one was starting to really bother me, more and more as I spent more time in it. It's been a long and lovely time having that beautiful citadel, but I have plenty more reasons to swap it out than I do to keep it.

If you're wondering what a few of those are, here:

There are anti-aliasing glitches in the walls, it has asymmetrical prims, inefficient wall space, raw edges, areas of poor texturing, and when I made it I was no where near as good a prim slinger as I am now. The store was designed for just a few vendors like the main mask one, and I didn't think I'd need more than a few spaces for a few vendors. Obviously that changed.

But on the other hand it has lovely ivy, a wonderful open air feeling, it's full of light, it has my favorite colors, it fits the character of the island and who doesn't love pillars? So I set out to making a new store design that will fit that area of land, as well as fit my wall space needs, have better shopping flow, and have everything that I loved about the first building. I think I've accomplished that!

This build doesn't mean that the old one is gone, not yet anyway. It's actually hovering above and behind the old one, and curious minds are definitely encouraged to come up to the new one and take a look! Before I settle it in and delete the other, I want to make sure no one will miss the old one. Ok, well a few people will miss it, but hopefully they'll like the new one enough to be able to get over it. It's much better inside.

The new store has quite a few beautiful details, like figureheads on the fluted pillars, fun keystone stonework and a quasi-feasible infrastructure. Feasible if, maybe, the stone I made the building out of weighed about as much as... wood. But I had a lot of fun problem solving... roofs have always been an issue with me and definitely a trouble, but this is the only one I'm actually extremely pleased with and don't see myself ruing in the future.

The shopping flow I feel goes a bit better in this building, rather than being a straight shot down, it leads you in a meandering circle around. I found from Candy that either people come for the masks, or they come for the "everything else". So I've made it so that browsers there to see the masks and cloaks will be led in a circle around the masky-ness, and then they can continue to the other yummies if they please, or the people after the other yummies can browse the masks if they please. Also, there's a couple of chairs for lounging in, and the fountain has a home again. I placed a carpet down in the sort of entrance area in order to break up the pattern of the floor, which can get very overwhelming in such a large space.

Did I mention I have wall space now? When Munchflower gave me a spot in Nomine, I had a nasty realization when setting up there that she had given me about 3 times as much wallspace as I had in my main store. That, and of course my own productivity was very encouraging to make the new build ^.^

I'll be making it official sometime later today, after I've finished setting up the inventory and when there's a lull in customers. I'm definitely open to any and all feedback and I'd love to hear what your thoughts are ^.^

Saturday, August 18, 2007

One of my current projects is getting ready for Jewelry Exposition 2007. Some folks might have noticed that I took my old jewelry designs off of the wall... I found them very long overdue for an overhaul and high time for some updating. Even when I put them into the new vendor, I didn't do the touch ups that I wanted to (positioning, making sure the textures were centered, suitable root prims etc), and when I did they were a very first attempt at using Miriel's lovely vendors. So the end result was something sloppy and inefficient, which I simply couldn't bear seeing any longer.

I've been working on some new designs that will be absolutely delightful, loosely based on the pins that I made for the Goth Cowboy hat. You can also look forward to another rendition of a rose necklace, this time in metal and with some fun detailing.

Jewelry Exposition 2007 will be starting September 15th, and will be running the whole week until September 22nd. I'll let you know more about my stall location when we end up setting up everything, but as for now, this is pretty much all I know! I hope to be submitting something for the charity auction, as well as something for the treasure hunt. Muahaha!

Thursday, August 16, 2007

1-800 Flowers

I've submitted my hopefully award winning piece to the 1-800-Flowers competition!

It ended up being 22 prims, and really, I couldn't have removed a single one. I took care to make the lily petals delicately thin, the thinnest I could make them without mesh glitches, and took care to match up the rich purple center of them. I also made sure that it looks good from every angle, like a true sculpture, and isn't just catering to one side (although this one is its best).

I liked taking this picture too... setting up mock home dioramas does have an appeal to it. I love SL, it's like having an enormous infinite doll house.

I suspect that there may be either very sneaky people competing, like, some sculpted prim expert that doesn't have a store and just comes out of nowhere... or maybe Fallingwater Cellardoor will submit something far less primmy... but right now, I feel very, very good about this piece. It's minimalist, yet lush, rich colors, good balance... all I can do now is hope the judges agree!

Monday, August 13, 2007

Historical Harlequin Happy

Oh it's the theme that never ends... it just goes on and on my friend... I think I'm finished building stuff and set it out for sale, but people keep suggesting things and I can't help myself oh it's the theme that...

Fooolish fooolish me. *giggles* I thought for a moment that I might set all of my finished harlequin stuff out and be done with it. And then folks started mentioning things, and it all sounded so good, ooo yes I do want to make that... and it's just been building up and building up. My amount of posts is definitely not proportionate to the work that I've been doing. I've been laying low, release wise, while some of the transaction issues get worked out, and it's been a good day and a half since my last failed delivery. So I've decided that despite the fact I have a couple more things in the works, I'm just going to set out some pieces now.

There is a veritable slew of yummy things to share, and the first... are these yummy gloves.

These look great on both men and women, with lots of room to spare in the same tradition as the Cavalier gloves. You can still thank Krimson Gray for that original glove texture, but whaddya know, I managed to match the seams myself this time! I was able to bleach out the glove texture and do a half and half that cups around the thumb in a most delicious way, and lengthen it as well as you can see in these:

I really liked the texture alone too much to not make it an option, I know some people aren't into the enormous and scunchy (hard to believe, right?). Both of these gloves have the same cuff though, just different sizes, and the cuff is split in the center for a nice little detail. Naturally it's flexi, and definitely goes with the set.

But with these, there's still something missing. I mean, wearing these things together makes a fabulous outfit, but there's a spot missing... like... lower down...

ZOMG BOOTS! With a delicately upturned toe, sculpted body and a modest heel, you can wear them without the body of them for a neato pair of shoes. These are naturally unisex, and have that wonderful scunchy look I know you love so much. But I thought I would also try something new. I've never, ever made a pair of women's heels before. It was time to change this!
The thing I love most about these is that sleek smooth fit, and that delicious line down the calf to the sculpted heel. I know that it could be much higher, much crazier... but I'm a tall lady IRL and I'm not a big fan of falling over. These look especially good in just the shoe alone, which is sleek and feminine and great to wear with flared cuff pants.

If anyone is wondering, the little "elf toe" comes from a fashion that started in the latter half of the 14th century. Back then, wealth was all about excess... extra food, extra servants, and especially, extra fabric. This extra fabric was most often seen in huge flowing sleeves, ridiculously long hats (called liripipes), and... in shoes. If you can have a ridiculous amount of material in your shoes, and make it rather obvious that you don't have to walk around in them much, you most definitely must be rich! This ridiculous amount of fabric was very often shown in the form of an absurdly elongated toe:

Haha, you thought I was done ;) These are fabulously unpractical shoes, inspired and demanded by and from Selos Dae, who did a drawing of my harlequin outfit and wanted ridiculous shoes to match. I did my best to realize them for her :) These are available in black, the natural leather color shown, and the harlequin texture so you can match if you like. These are incredibly oversized, and are guaranteed to get you some attention.

So where did the little version come from, from these enormous points? Well, some of the shoes got so amazingly long, (sometimes reaching as far as 4 ft), that they started stringing chains from the tip of the shoe to bands around their knees so they could actually walk. This created a curled tip at the end, that poorer folks tried to emulate. As the fad died down to more reasonable levels in the 15th century, the curl remained while the length did not, and so that vision of a curled toe is immortalized in our visions of historical jesters.

Speaking of jesters in court... there is one more thing I would like to release today. It's obviously been quite a busy period for me and now you can see that I haven't just been diddling!

This is, of course, a jester's staple. A jester's wand always had a carved head on it, or some sort of effigy of the jester himself. It would be "dressed" similarly, and he would use it to speak for him if he wanted to say something controversial. He would say that it might be his "stupid side" or his "foolish side", or the puppet that didn't know any better. Sometimes he would be so skilled with ventriloquism, it could almost be believable! This wand/puppet/lifesaver was called a "marotte". Honoring this tradition and origin of this, I've had it scripted by the incredibly useful and kind Ethan Schuman to be able to speak for you! As the picture says, anything you type after "/5" will speak from the marotte, and so you don't have to worry about having your head cut off. It will also jingle with a much lighter version of the Harlequin Cap's jingle if you tap its head.

Isn't that exactly what you needed?

Saturday, August 11, 2007

I'm sure if you've read any designer's blog recently, you've heard something about the recent transaction failures and failed deliveries. When people pay, they just aren't getting their items. So I've been hopping about, putting out fires, dealing with folks who think I'm scamming them, and trying to explain that it's just a temporary problem with Second Life. But then there have been those beautifully patient folks, who were happy to wait as I had to relog several times, clear my cache, reload my monstrous inventory, download a new viewer etc, and were still very happy and grateful to get the thing they paid for about an hour ago. To them... thank you :) You know who you are ;)

I also have some news... I've actually hired my first employees! My two very good friends Kriket Pimpernel and Candy Flanagan hung out in my shop and helped folks find things anyway, so I decided to make what they were doing official and pay them for it ^_^ So if you see either of these lovely ladies greeting you in a bubbly manner when you first teleport, yes they're meant to be there :)

I've been working on a few things but I've been a bit hesitant to put them out, with all of the wonky things going on. I might put them out a little later today, because today seems to be better with the transaction issues. That might also be because of the sign I put up, though. Couple more jester things, because I simply can't help myself, and maybe one last hedgehog outfit: hedgie jester :)

Thursday, August 9, 2007

Been blogged again! And with some other sideways mentions on others! Sometimes it really is fun to troll for my name in Google, after I've managed to get rid of search results for things I myself put out there.

I'd like to say thank you to Queenie Extraordinaire, who, since she found my store back in March or so, has loyally posted delicious outfit combos with a few choice accessories of mine, and she has very much done her part to spread my name around. She's recently become a part of the Metaverse Messenger's Fashion Angels squad, who right now is providing me with my daily professional fashionista fix while Linden Lifestyles is on holiday. After talking to Doc a little about how funny it was we did Jester things (and after he oh so magnanimously filled out my color choices for that outfit >.>) I was reminded that Queenie worked for Doc and it was about time I dropped that loverly lady some yummy updated sculpty things!

Well, bless her, possibly that same day or a little after she wrote up a wonderfully flattering post about my new Harlequin items, and the new hats, and included me with both Munchflower and Doc, who have been designing for more than twice as long as I have (possibly even three times more). The best part about it is she makes me feel like one of the Big Kitties (like big dogs, but we /are/ in the fashion industry), and she always has a subtle, completely effortless way of making my items look like you must be insane not to have them, and you must be hiding under a rock to have not heard of me. So though she may not say anything along the lines of "oh my gosh, these are so well made!", it's very, very flattering nonetheless.

I did mention that I got a couple of side mentions. By this I mean I got some press and my items were used on blogs, but I wasn't the focus. I was raided by Stephanie Misfit, who apparently was quite inspired by the incomparable Swirly's irresistable fabulousness and Dakota Buck's choice selection in my items, and she swung by to nab some yummies. Checking back on their blog, Fashion Victim, I found some of my items in a not so positive post, but really my items looked so wonderful in it it dressed up the outfit and made it much more yummy than it probably should have been. I also got to see my Unicorn Mask getting some air out of the dusty vendor and being worn with Saeya Nyanda's new Couture releases. Off of the fashion beat, I caught a glimpse of my Eliza hat and Cavalier Boots on a sort of "Hitchhiker's Guide to SL Shopping" from a blog called Grid Grind. It has some excellent advice in it that I certainly do my best to follow, and also it made me feel extremely smug and happy.

So on this sort of "pimp my wares" strain, I happen to have made some very fortunate friends in the lovely ladies Iris Ophelia (whom I call my gemini twin), and Celebrity Trollop, both masterminds behind the most affluent, professional and possibly most popular fashion magazine, Second Style. Celebrity has kindly requested I make their new dispenser for their magazine (something about 10 prims or less that allows folks to touch and get a copy), and it would be pretty much anywhere I would teleport to go shopping. So now I need to come up with a dynamic, economical, original design, fitting the professionalism of their establishment and good enough that if my insane perfectionist mind sees it about 5 times a week it won't drive me bonkers.

I've also got a fun, cute, sneaky little photo appearance in their current issue (number 9). See if you can find the pale Asian one XD I'm credited, so if you think you see me, you can check and see. Then you can say "I see you Siyu!" I feel like Waldo!

I also won't say much, I don't want to jinx anything, but it seems I will be very, very busy come Halloween.

Wednesday, August 8, 2007

Hedgehog Avengers

Back in November when I first started making masks, the very first mask I sold was in a little place called the Isle of Wyrms. Alright, it wasn't so little, but it was home to Noobie Siyu, who spent her many hours online building in the sandbox and chatting with passersby. Daryth Kennedy, the creator of the Wyrms the Isle was Of, had a modest market area there and she gave me a wall, the only space she had, for me to offer up my meager offerings. As I diddled a bit more, made a few new things, there was an adorable little avatar that Daryth released, that was her favorite little animal in all the world... the hedgehog. She created them to benefit a charity called Tiddlywinks that takes care of RL hedgehogs... and so lots of people started running around with these adorable, rolling, tiny little hedgehog avatars that were about knee height to a normal one (tinies, they're also called :)~ I ended up with one too, and that is when I made some fun things for it. I slapped on a hat... and then decided to give myself a mask... and then a belt... and a cape... and suddenly I transformed into Hedgehog Zorro! I packaged up the accessories and stuck them on my wall, and suddenly folks of the Isle of Wyrms we're buying them and tumbling around in little hats and little capes and little rapiers that I made. One day, I saw one of them with a title: Hedgehog Musketeer. They had made a group called The Hedgehog Nation Musketeers, who would crash parties and do tiny raids on various places all waving around my little rapier and wearing my little hats! Well, about 3 months ago I took down the Hedgie Zorro outfit and for 3 months the group sort of withered, and there were only occasional sightings of a fine feathered hat being tumbled by a hedgehog.

Well, today I'd like to introduce Hedgehog Zorro once more, but this time he's brought friends.

Hedgie Zorro looks rather dashing in a brand new sculpted and flexi cape with a delicate silver trim to tie it all together. His new sculpted mask is fit to the face with maximum breathability for those sweaty fights. His rakish desperado style hat will keep the sun off his fur and keep him from getting dusty as he rolls around on the ground!

In honor of the noble Hedgehog Nation Musketeers, I have offered up to them their beloved hat in sculpt-ified form, with a dashing and slimming colorable tunic to hide that sometimes pudgy hedgie belly.And lastly, for the hedgie who's seen better days and wants to arrrrr-gue about it, the torn up hedgehog of the seas! With a genuine peg leg that replaces the hedgehog leg, and an eyepatch to cover up some unidentified wound, you don't want to mess with this little critter's feathery hat.

These aren't for sale in the main store, in fact I haven't and won't do an update to the group (however I believe the Musketeers are getting one), but they are on sale at my stall in Limbo, and on the second floor of the Citizen's Market. I found it only appropriate to make them exclusive to the place where they were born, and the place where folks will really be able to wear them right, with the avatars they were made for!

Monday, August 6, 2007

Harlequin Ruff and Belt

It turns out that me and Munchflower weren't the only ones who seemed to catch some sort of gothic jester fever... without our knowing and completely independent of our creations, Doc Eldritch of DE Designs released matching gothic Jester outfits. I thought this was a hilarious and fabulous coincidence, apparently there was just something in the air! Well prancing around in the (gorgeous!) female Jester outfit (in black and white naturally) by Doc, I found myself longing for accessories...

This is an absolute classic, and as you can see it has matching roping to the head pieces, and delicate frippery lace that tucks up right underneath the chin. However, if you find you don't want the high collar (maybe say, you're a man's man's Jester), I made a version included without it which you can see to the right. Or maybe you just want the high collar! I'm pretty sure you could wear this with almost anything that fits snug around the neck, I tried it with a couple of dresses and a sweater and it still looked delicious. I've made all of the pieces with special care when sizing my prims, to make them all very stretchable, both out and in. My very petite friend Candy didn't have any trouble shrinking it to her little frame, and I in a male shape didn't have any trouble stretching it out, though the high collar did give me some issues.

The design of the collar itself heralds from the fashion of the the thirteenth century in western Europe. Alternating colors or "parti color" was a big fad back then, as was wearing a sort of hood or cowl around your shoulders to hide the laces of your shirt. It was a sort of male modesty, since very often shirts of the day would expose quite a bit of chest (which is one of the things we now love about renaissance inspired shirts >.>).

After making such a delicious collar, I found myself admiring my avatar. Mmmm yes, that went beautifully with the Scherzo and the Harlequin cap... but I'm missing something. Something around my middle...

There aren't too many pieces I do that make me sit back and go "wow... I am totally insane". Oh believe me there are those pieces, and this is one of them. The sculpted belt prim is one I've been sitting on (haha!) for a while, but it's always been so embarassingly simple I haven't had the gall to put it out. I put it to good use in this though, by setting three together with alternating color and having the same matching delicate rope work covering the prim seam. As I found myself about half way round myself, duplicating and duplicating little wrap prims, I honestly was wondering what in the Metaverse was I doing, making something that could have easily been about 30 prims 150+ prims? But as I saw them come together and how well they matched the other pieces, and as I got that urge to just reach out and touch it.. (not to mention own one in my first life), I had another one of those wonderful affirming moments where you camera back, admire your glorious creation and say "Ah yes... that's why."

Again I made a special effort to make sure all of the prims could be grown and shrunk to a pretty considerable amount, because I know not too many guys have the hips that Siyu does (not too many girls either!). The sculpted belt prims fit with a comfortable gravity on the avatar body, curving up with the hips and down under the tummy, and the points sway with a gentle heavy flexi. I've also included a version without the points in case you want to wear it with a skirt or something.

Like the other items these are mod and therefore tintable :) So you can fit these delicious yummies into your own motley color scheme!

Friday, August 3, 2007

Scherzo: More Jingly Goodness

The jester bug has bit, and hard! Wearing these Nomine skins around has gotten me into a rather goofy mood, and so I've made another fun head jingler, which probably won't be the last:

These lightly rest on your hair, in case you're a fan of spikier styles that aren't suited to hats. These have delicate wrapped roping like the Harlequin cap around both ends, and the same cute little sculpted bells. A "scherzo" in Italian is normally a passage or movement in a sonata which is silly, quick and playful, but the root word "scherzare" means to joke or jest! So this is my obtuse way of being clever. To tell the truth, this was inspired by a first life costume company called Moresca, which has cute little hair horns you can stick in your hair... I decided to make my own interpretation and add the bells, and make it match the Harlequin cap ^_^ Like it, it jingles lightly on touch, but I used a different jingle to reflect the size and placement of the bells on the hat. Because I could.

In the middle ages there might have been many people welcome in the courts of European royalty, and only one would be able to speak the truth plainly. It wasn't the king, and it wasn't even the queen, who might be in the presence of foreign diplomats that they wouldn't want to peeve... it was the jester. The fool alone was the person who could tell the whole truth, and say it in such a way that it was entertaining and neutral, because if anyone took offense, he could apologize and pass it off with a "Oh, I am but a fool! A mere knave who knows no better, please forgive!". Naturally such a position comes with risks of making the wrong joke, ticking off the wrong victim of satire, and so the successful court jesters had biting wit and were (more often than not) the most intelligent people in the room. The "horns" the fool wore were symbolic of ass's ears, which is pretty much synonymous with a dunce's cap or an "I'm with Stupid" t-shirt as a sign of a foolish person or a town oaf. The bells actually weren't strictly associated with jesters, for bells actually were very complicated and delicate things to make for a smith or a jeweler. So they were more of a sign of a jester's status as a valuable and affluent member of the court! But it doesn't hurt that they're fun, light and playful.

Nowadays of course with comic book characters like The Joker and Harley Quinn, the jester's "cap'n'bells" has become associated with gothic super villains and dramatic costumery, which is a niche I am most happy to acknowledge! I'm surprised I didn't make these earlier, because they're just so wonderfully Illusions :) Gothic, traditional, Venetian, historical... playful :)

Wednesday, August 1, 2007

Today was a pretty slow day for me, I did some cleaning up in that good ol' first life, and I've been spending more time with my poor, attention starved fiance. So if you guys were wondering why the posts have been a little slow, blame the first life :)

Today I was sitting with my dear friends Kricket and Candy (talking about the Harry Potter book) and me being the putterer that I am I found myself editing and improving the area around us. It was time that the lucky chair pit felt the magic wand of sculpted prims as well... *cue glimmering sound effects*

Delicious sculpted furniture, but I didn't change the table... I'm rather fond of it, actually! I got rid of that texture railing and put in a real one, after all, I do have half a sim to play with. But I wasn't that flippant with the furniture, they're actually pretty modest, about 13 to 18 prims each. It's been suggested that I sell the furniture (and my trees), but something tells me I need to have more than just one or two variations of it before I sell any of it.

The jester's hat has become quite a big hit actually, and people who wear them have ended up with the nickname of jingle heads :) It's all in good fun, naturally!

Illusions has also almost reached a milestone! Apparently my update group has reached almost 200 members! I've offered up free harlequin caps as a gift to the members who refer their friends to help me reach that nice round number!! I was at 196 last time I checked, but IM me if I go over and I'll be happy to give you and your friend your hats ^.^ It's amazing and almost unreal to me... that there are two hundred people out there that want to know the very second I release something new. I'm pretty sure that back in February I only had 80 people, and I was stuck at that number for a very long time.

I'll be planning another party soon, and this time I think I'll have to take a page out of Linden Lifestyle's book! I'll be making a group with a member cap on it equal to the sim's capacity, and have the party be limited for the first hour to only members of that group. I might even do the prim and script limit too, but I don't think it'll come to that. I was just so blown away at the attendance and enthusiasm for the Midsummer Night's Dream Masquerade, and all of the IM's I got from folks worrying about getting in because the sim was full... So I'd like to avoid that for the next time if I can :) I'll figure out more info and share it when I figure more things out ^.^