Soul Surfer

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Bienvenido, cutie pies! Have got some lovely sneak peeks for you from the Body Art Hunt, which just kicked off today and is cram-jammed with some gorgeous gifts from 22 of the grid’s best. You may find a list of helpful SLURLs and hints at this link, or search for the “Stuff My Inventory Hunts” group in-world to chat with fellow hunters. Onto the previews!

Soul Surfer
Please click for full size.

I’ve been lusting over White Widow‘s tattoos since they kept sneaking into my Flickr feed (it’s some form of witchy black magic, honestly!) – and I’m rapt with the gorgeous Desperado hunt gift. It comes with an impressive number of appliers for your meshy bodies and bits, and also offers options for classic avatars. My eyes and eyeshadow are courtesy of Banana Banshee and Zibska, and they both did a smashing job being inspired by the hunt’s theme of “Circus”. From Banana Banshee, you’ll find four pairs of eyes in really cool color and pattern combinations, and mesh options are offered in several sizes, including a special size for petite avatars. And Zibska offers a dazzling array of 10 shimmery eyeshadows in classic tattoo layers and appliers for TMP and LeLutka heads.

Soul Surfer
Please click for full size.

My amazingly glamorous ‘do is by Besom, and right now it’s exclusive to the N21 Event, which is ongoing through July 10th. I’m madly in love with the hair colors found in the Fade Dye HUD! The pretty pastel fades are so perfect, I want to rez the HUD and rub up against it in a salacious manner that would be entirely unladylike! My wonderfully sexy bikini is by Sachi, a new brand with a lot of promise who are doing lovely work with applier clothing. (But don’t worry, classic avies – clothing layers come with each purchase as well!) The Karrueche Bikini comes in Cyan, Orange and Ruby Red, and whilst I don’t often reach for red in my outfits, I couldn’t resist the juicy, apple-licious hue.

Speaking of new brands, I’m really impressed with the quality of Paper Arrow‘s beautiful and delicate jewelry. They have a wonderful gift out right now, and their group fee will be raised to L$250 on July 20th so now’s the time to teleport over and snag the goodness! On sure, I could give you a preview of the gift, but I’mma tease you into giving Paper Arrow a very worthwhile visit yourself, because I’m fancy like that. ^_^

And on the subject of being fancy, I’m on a surfboard, you guise! Well, technically I’m lounging on a surfboard, but it’s only because I don’t want to risk getting my hair wet, and there’s the whole “lack of surfing prowess” thang to contend with. So for my kindred beach babes who’d rather surf our deep thoughts than the deep ocean blue, MMC has created a perfect pink surfboard prop that comes with 8 relaxing and highly picturesque poses.

Last but not least, I’m wearing another luscious AlterEgo group gift skin that you simply have to go snag, or you’re officially the worst. (Only kidding, I’m not the boss of you, silly!) But with three gorgeous gifts, and three sets of pretty L$1 lippies to pick up in-store, Toxxic is spoiling her group members with awesomeness!

Oh! And I want to sneak in a sincere thank you to the kind soul(s) who shared my Second Life Fashion & Shopping Events Spreadsheet post on Facebook! I don’t have an account there myself, and I noticed a lot of visitors within the last day who were directed to my blog via FB, so I tremendously appreciate the link love. So happy that people are finding the schedule/spreadsheet to be a good resource, and I just updated it this morning with a couple of new events and the new FaMESHed round info, so it should be all up-to-date. Go forth and shop all the things! ♥

Body / Maitreya | Mesh Body – Lara v3.4
Skin / AlterEgo | Kensi – Honey (Longnight) | Group Gift
* Hair / Besom | Ky-J Hair – Fade Dye HUD | N21 Event, through July 10th
* Eyes / Banana Banshee | Carnival Eyes – Party | Body Art Hunt, through July 31st
Lashes / ACD | Eye Lashes 4 | SL Marketplace
Eyeliner / Langly | Eyeliner 1 | Free on SL Marketplace
* Eyeshadow / Zibska | Celia Eyeshadow – Carnivale 05 | Body Art Hunt, through July 31st
Lips / AlterEgo | Lip Luva Collection Reds – Apricot | L$1 at in-world store
Freckles / Shock | Tintable Freckles | Group Gift
* Tattoo / White Widow | Desperado – Normal | Body Art Hunt, through July 31st

* Necklace / Paper Arrow | Heart Necklace – Gold
* Ring / Paper Arrow | Heart Ring – Gold
* Swimsuit / Sachi | Karrueche Bikini – Ruby Red

Prop & Poses
* MMC / Surfboard Female Pink

The Vineyard at Checkmate

Summer Rayne

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In my little corner of the First Life universe, it’s HOT. I think even the Grammar Police would forgive that egregious caps lock usage, because there’s just no suitable way to express the special melty, sweltery misery of a desert summertime. Why did a red haired, fair skinned, burns-to-a-crisp-in-10-minutes lass move to such a place? Excellent question, my friends! Do let me know if you ever think of a logical answer. ;)

Having grown up in the Northeastern part of the US, I was used to never living far from a body of water, whether it was the Atlantic ocean; a pretty lake at a state park; even a swimming hole at the base of a waterfall where you’d steal away on lazy summer afternoons for shy smooches with your high-school paramour. But in the Southwest? Bodies of water are either man-made and un-swimmable, or merely a faraway dream.

With our lack of precipitation and shorelines, I always have a dual dream of rain and the beach, although not necessarily experiencing both at the same time! But in Second Life, I’m enjoying exactly that: a beautiful oceanside escape and a gorgeous outfit that may not be suitable for rain, but was beautifully made by RAYNE. Close enough for me!

Summer Rayne
Please click for full size.

I feel just like a tropical, boho beach babe in my long, lovely skirt and fringed top by RAYNE Couture, which is exclusive to the Sneak Peak event through July 5th. It comes in three different color combinations; I’m showing the forest/red (left) and teal/purple (right) styles here. And my beautiful, freckly and fresh-faced skin is by DS’ELLES, whose skintones are just perfection for sunny summer days! They give me a soft, sweet kiss of sun that I can’t even dream of achieving in real life.

How lovely it is that the virtual world lets us experience so many things we can only wish for in the physical world, from the serenity of an ocean’s shore to the golden loveliness of tanned skin. Is it any wonder that I’m absolutely rapt over my 2nd Second Life? ♥

Body / Maitreya | Mesh Body – Lara v3.4
* Skin / DS’ELLES | Lola Skin – Neva
Hair / Entwined | Elinna – Light Reds HUD | Group Gift
* Eyes / DS’ELLES | Prunelle Eyes – Amande
Lashes / ACD | Eye Lashes 3 | SL Marketplace
Eyeliner / Langly | Eyeliner 1 | Free on SL Marketplace
Eyeshadow / TSM | Eye Highlight | Free on SL Marketplace
Lips / Pink Fuel | Glossy Pout Lipstick – Love

* Earrings / Secret Love | Pearl Droplets Earrings | SL Marketplace or in-world
* Outfit / RAYNE | La Boheme – Forest/Red and Teal/Purple | Sneak Peek Event, through July 5th

Overlow Poses / Pack Gift 4 – Poses 1 & 2 / Free on SL Marketplace

Baja Cove

Project Funway

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Ever’s Age – 15 days
Balance – L$615

Excelsior! I’m halfway through my first month back in Second Life, and I’ve finally managed to open, try on, sort through, and organize my first wave of group gifts and freebies – just in time to fill ‘er up again with even more amazing finds. As it happens, I still have two weeks left to check out the FabFree 30 Days List, a curated collection of free avatar clothing, accessories, and more that generous brands have on offer specifically for members whose accounts are under a month old.

Tip: If you’re just joining Second Life, keep in mind that your account starts accumulating age from the day of your registration, not from the day of your first actual login to the grid. (So if you signup through the SL website on a Wednesday and don’t install the viewer until the weekend, for example, your account will have already accumulated a few days of age.) If you’d like to take advantage of limited time gifts like these, be sure to login and visit the locations in that list within your first 30 days!

As you can see from my balance above, I’ve still only spent L$2 but have virtually doubled my wardrobe thanks to the overwhelmingly generous group gifts that I wrote about the other day. Chapter Four has closed until the next round, but the other offers are available through at least May 20th, so if you happened to miss it, be sure to click here for the Freebie Finds post!

I’m incredibly impressed with the free gifts on offer from LaVian & Co, which is the brand from my freebies & gifts post whose VIP group normally costs several hundred L$ to join. The styles mainly run to cocktail or “smart casual” attire, which will be perfect for everyday grid-hopping and finally exploring SL’s nightlife – or daylife, as the case may be! LaVian & Co’s group gifts will give me lots of options, and one of my favorite things has been the versatility of breaking up the outfits (most of which come with HUDs offering several color choices) into their individual pieces. Pre-assembled looks are something I’ve rarely been partial to in Second Life – I don’t believe I’ve ever used the “Save Outfit” feature at all – so being able to swap out tops, skirts, pants, and so on that have been packaged together is something I’ll always give high marks to. I snapped the look below when I was doing exactly that during my opening and organizing extravaganza!

Project Funway
(Please click for a full-size image.)

Skin: Enfant – Chapter Four W2 (L$0 group gift, no longer available)
Eyeliner: Langly – Eyeliner #1 (L$0)
Lip Color: Tilly – Pink Lipstick 50% (L$0)
Eyes: Chus – Poppet Lenses in Ice (L$0)
Hair: Pr!tty – Sumi / Ombre 5 (L$0 group gift)
Top: LaVian & Co – Top of the World Outfit (L$0 group gift)
Jeans: LaVian & Co – Hey Sexy Jeans (L$0 group gift)
Shoes: Mekky’s – Laced & Buckled Ankle Boots (L$0)
Poses: SKBIO Animations – Sang (L$0 group gift, no longer available)
Wall Texture:  Dy’s Yardsale & Texture Shop Grunge Shaded Texture (L$0)
Floor Texture: Parquet Wood Floor Textures (L$0)

Speaking of exploring the grid, I had a lovely chat with my friend Bee, whom I met on Day 1 at the portal on Learning Island. She’s having an absolute blast in Second Life, having already found a community in-world that meets her interests and makes her feel welcome. I teased her that she was going to have to start showing me the ropes pretty soon! And then something may or may not have been said about one of us tying up the other, but I can’t remember how the rest of the conversation went so let’s get back to the subject at hand, hmmm? /me blushes.

Honestly though, I’m overjoyed to see someone who’s brand new to the virtual world immediately finding their unique niche. It was an apropos and welcome revelation given what’s transpired over the last week, with several noted community members expressing their beliefs that Second Life is dying, declining, or perhaps just experiencing the natural ebb and flow of its age along with lessening public awareness. None of this is troubling though: it’s just transitional and part of the evolution of the platform and its membership. I rejoined again, as many often do, and I’ve met several people in the last two weeks who were joining for the first time ever, as many still do. And sometimes it takes one of those fresh, new, clear-eyed souls to kick us in the pants and remind us to relish the time we have in this virtual world, on this unique platform.

Bee’s Second Life experiences thus far have reminded me that I don’t want to spend my time in-world doing the same thing I did for a month at a time, a week off and on, over the many years my old account existed. Namely: hanging out in a skybox or at a sandbox, sorting through and organizing my inventory, maybe having IM conversations, but otherwise remaining static. That’s a perfectly valid and enjoyable way that many people exist in Second Life, but I personally want to push outside my comfort zone. It’s like on Project Runway, when the contestants are pushed to create something extraordinary from the unconventional, or design a look that’s beyond their normal comfort zone. I’ve been tuned in and zoned out for too long, and as we’ve seen time and again over the years, the things you think will always be around in Second Life – like the long-standing and iconic builds or certain thoughtful and enigmatic creators – may be forever changed, or simply vanish completely. Seeing my friend so happily immersed in her community and interests have inspired me to try on a new style and get down to the wonderfully fun business (and “funny business”) of Second Living. :)