Esperanza

Esperanza

I have written frequently about Esperanza Spalding. I am a huge fan, in part because she gives hope that studied, complex music is not a dead form for young musicians and she promotes the dream of innovation and the future, not just in music but in general (which we don’t have enough of nowadays). Add to that, she is an absolutely beautiful young woman whose story is quite amazing. Raised in a lower-income area by a single mom who worked many jobs to get her through school, she is a testament to the encouragement of the many adults in her life who got her where she is and nurtured her passion and talent. At age 20, she was on the faculty at the Berklee College of Music, and at age 23, she won the Grammy for Best New Artist (beating Justin Bieber). What an amazing role model for girls!

Esperanza

I tried to look like Esperanza, complete with upright bass from Paul Ge. (This one comes with poses and music. When I contacted Paul to inquire about it, he gave me a money back guarantee, which guaranteed I would not ask him based on his attentive customer service.) Esperanza always dresses fashionably, elegantly, and age appropriately. I wore this rather sophisticated dress by machang Pichot (that I did snag at the 50% off sale) for Esperanza’s performance tonight to echo an outfit she wore to perform at the White House.

Esperanza

What makes the look is this fantastic hair from Neveah Niu who knows that a girl doesn’t always want straightener or short hair, and Esperanza wears her hair like this typically. I love this hair—I will definitely wear it again. Anzhela Karsin made my skin, which is one of the few skins in SL that I have found that seems to capture a black woman’s features and looks without just being a skin colored darker and made from a white skin. The shape is of my own making—Esperanza is a tiny woman. Imagine lugging that bass around!

Esperanza

Check out this fortunate accident I created…. I was finding all the links above to plug into this blog and somehow threw one of the links on the prim behind me. So while I wrote this, I enjoyed Esperanza on the NPR Music Tiny Desk Concert.

Esperanza

I don’t expect to ever taste the fruit
My life devoted could bring forth
I almost believe
Well I do believe
Oh the path to peace is endless
So, choosing to close our eyes makes our faults mendless
Of this I’m sure enough
I won’t give up
I’m sure enough

~ “Espera” by Esperanza Spalding

Hair: ICONIC  JoJo-Blackpack* by Neveah Niu for ICONIC

Hairbase: AD hair base – black by Queue Marlowe for Analog Dog

Skin: Rhianna M1by Anzhela Karsin for Angelskins *

Shape: by me

Eyes: FASHISM ‘Sunrise’ Eyes – Dark Brown (ML) by Ikon Innovia for FASHISM *

Dress: AOHARU_BT_TweedFeminineDress_Purple by machang Pichot for AOHARU

Necklace: “R.A.Crystal”*Frola* white & platinum necklace brooch on chest by Rama Anatine for R.A.Crystal

Shoes: N-core SEDUCTION XtremeHeel “Silver” BOXED by Claire Messenger for N-core

Bass: Upright bass (Wearable) Updated by Paul Ge for Mainland Music Instruments

In Flower

In Flower

Her body calculated to a millimeter to suggest a bud yet guarantee a flower. ~ F. Scott Fitzgerald

In Flower

A gorgeous woman in full bloom—is there a more beautiful photo? All over the grid, women bloom with beauty and their feminine spirit, whether in jeans or miniskirts or lingerie. I chose to bloom today in this beautiful ball gown from AvaGardner Kungler. With its sculpty tiered skirt, blossom at the hip and simple bodice. Ava understands the silhouette has to be weighted properly so the top is minimal to allow the beauty of the skirt, with its painterly texture, to show off to best effect. I may note that this texture echoes some of Ava’s work on her jewelry. She has a very beautiful and distinctive style. I love wearing her art.

In Flower

I show with the one of the ethereal, almost translucent skins of Gala Phoenix. I keep coming back to these again and again because they provide such a fresh foundation for many fashions. With a gentle sprinkling of freckles, well defined eyebrows and full beautiful lips, the skin provides a blooming visage.

My hair is one of the couture offerings of the Platinum Hunt. Fauve Beaumont and Lulu Jameson created this gorgeous updo with a color change flower just for you hunters. I wear with a hairbase graciously provided by Queue Marlowe at Analog Dog. And my jewelry from Danielle Astonia finishes this beauty in bloom with beautiful sculpty roses at neck and wrist.

In Flower

The flower is the poetry of reproduction. It is an example of the eternal seductiveness of life. ~ Jean Giraudoux

Hair: *Plume* – Desir/Platinum by Fauve Beaumont & Lulu Jameson for *Plume, available in the Platinum Hunt *

Skin: :GP: Sundust Frex [Light] May-Apple Blossom 1 by Gala Phoenix for Curio *

Eyes: FASHISM ‘Sunrise’ Eyes – Steel Blue (ML) by Ikon Innovia for FASHISM *

Hairbase: AD hair base – creme by Queue Marlowe for Analog Dog

Dress: (Kunglers Couture) Raica – cream gown by AvaGardner Kungler for Kunglers *

Choker and wrist corsage: *Arwen Choker S/Pink w/flexy* and *Arwen Bracelet White* by Danielle Astonia for La Forgia *

Photographed at Mirromere

Madame Ichisumi

Madame Ichisumi

Madame Ichisumi likes to say she was a geisha of the highest order, a geisha of the Gion Kobu. Her history is much cloudier and she doesn’t remember all of it, but it’s certain she had never been a high-standing geisha—pursuing that vocation was too challenging in this modern era. Instead, she was a hostess, a rich man’s mistress, and briefly, an accountant when her lover had abandoned her briefly because of his wife’s complaints. Now that her lover has passed, she is the mamasan of a high end hostess club.

Madame Ichisumi

The hostesses find her dramatic stories amusing; the foreign businessmen eat them up. She tells of serving tea to diplomats and billionaires, of dancing before kings and playing the shamisen before presidents. As she deftly passes drinks to the patrons, she weaves tales of intrigue and reenacts dramas that turn on nuanced cultural twists. As she introduces hostesses to patrons, she employs the art of careful and subtle negotiation and pairing; she is a skillful matchmaker despite her dramatic mien, which is what makes her such a great mamasan. Lighting a cigarette, asking a patron about his work, choosing a selection on the karaoke–each is a gentle social nudge to encourage the patrons to drink, smoke, spend, and enjoy themselves.

She insists on being called “Madame” Ichisumi, not “Mamasan,” as a signal to her mostly western clientele, and she will never engage with them outside of professional contexts. (In fact, no one quite knows where she goes when she leaves early in the morning after work.) She always dresses elegantly and dramatically as befits her role. Wearing a dress from RFB Morpork, she is the epitome of elegance and drama. With its long sheath with prims swirling about her like a flight of birds, it well represents the kind of woman Madame is—beautiful, dramatic and also mysterious.

Madame Ichisumi

Her hair is always put up in an intricate and studied assemblage much as a geisha’s might be. This one from Tabata Jewell, also includes texture-change fans which Madame chose to forgo. Her makeup is always carefully applied, accenting her dark eyes and beautiful lips. This look comes courtesy of Lara Hurley with a softly blushing facade and beauty mark.

It always seems she picks up a phone and what she wants is there, anytime, any place. She needs 30 year-old Macallan for a patron, it’s there. One of the hostesses ripped her skirt? A tailor arrives within minutes. Madame fretted over her look this evening. It needed earrings. So she lifted the phone, dialed her friend Kikunosuke Eel, and after a brief conversation and a short time, a messenger arrived with lotus earrings. She gasped and wore them instantly.

Madame Ichisumi

Oct Oakleaf also stopped by that evening with a box specially wrapped for her. She opened it to reveal these exquisite slingbacks. As he kneeled down and slipped them on her feet, he showed her how the hud allowed her to change the lace insets. She smiled down at him, admiring her lovely feet, pointing the shoes this way and that. He was pleased as was she. He smiled and squeezed her hand as she left. “You’re more than welcome, my cherry blossom.”

Madame Ichisumi

“In the cherry blossom’s shade
there’s no such thing
as a stranger.”
— Kobayashi Issa

Hair: Vanity Hair: Shizuka-Noir by Tabata Jewell for Vanity Hair

Skin: Lara Hurley-Dessa for Platinum Hunt by Lara Hurley for Lara Hurley Skin, available in the Platinum Hunt *

Shape: Fluke Shapes – Jia Li by GM Nikolaidis for Fluke * (modified)

Eyes: FASHISM ‘Sunrise’ Eyes – Dark Brown (ML) by Ikon Innovia for FASHISM *

Dress: Paris Metro: Take Flight Red & Black Bird by RFB Morpork for Paris Metro *

Earrings: *[MANDALA] Lotus Earring /RED bright by Kikunosuke Eel for [MANDALA] *

Shoes: +ADDiCTIA+ ELECTRO Stilettos – Lava Red by Oct Oakleaf for +ADDiCTIA+ *

Thank you for the inspiration, AC ;)

Lemon Ice

Lemon Ice

Yesterday I met a friend for lemon ice, a friend from SL who I had never met face-to-face before. I knew about his family, his boat, his car, his politics (*sigh*) and because we live close enough, he promised once to treat me to lemon ice. It was a dare as much as an invitation. I, being brash as I am, insisted on a glass of wine. (“After all, I bought you your first shoes.” I did. Kalnins. He loved them.) He brought me a bottle of sweet German wine. We have made a friendship. He has given me good words, wise counsel and kind appraisals. That old phrase to remember that there is a real person behind the avatar could never be more true. He is genuine. So this is dedicated to him.

Lemon Ice

What is being dedicated? Well this beautiful look, courtesy of Quennye Quinnell. See I met him when I went out dancing and he had a fiercely newbie look but a cool name. So I danced with him, found out he was a genuine gentleman who desperately needed good footwear. This dress many have been like what I wore. With its beautiful lace prims and sexy system pieces, it’s demure and alluring all at once. I like how Quennye mixed the lace with the satin on the gown. And this dress is for dancing. It moves with grace, swirling around your legs.

Lemon Ice

I pair it with a lovely pale skin from Helyanwe Vindaloo that I have shown before. It’s truly a “blonde” skin with its pale features. The eyeliner dresses up the skin for going out. My hair is one of Kavar Cleanslate’s newest—an updo but this time not in my usual Chardonnay. (Will miracles ever cease?) And I wear a vintage bracelet from Tigerlily Koi, who truly is one of the nicest ladies on the grid.

Lemon Ice

“Do not let your fire go out, spark by irreplaceable spark in the hopeless swaps of the not-quite, the not-yet, and the not-at-all. Do not let the hero in your soul perish in lonely frustration for the life you deserved and have never been able to reach. The world you desire can be won. It exists.. it is real.. it is possible.. it’s yours.” ~ Ayn Rand

Hair: ::Exile:: Rae:Stefani by Kavar Cleanslate for ::Exile:: *

Skin: .ploom. Maia_Cream – BL – Eyeliner 4 by Helyanwe Vindaloo for ploom

Eyes: FASHISM ‘Sunrise’ Eyes – Pale Steel Blue (ML) by Ikon Innovia for FASHISM *

Dress: QQ Fashion –  Gail – Sky Blue **** by Quennye Quinnell by QQ Fashion *

Bracelet: Calla Ivory Pearl Bracelet by Tigerlily Koi for Calla

Shoes: *GF* Ribbon Slingback Shoes -silver- by Cerberus Noel for G Field

Plum Pretty

Plum Pretty

What is more mortifying than to feel that you have missed the plum for want of courage to shake the tree? ~ Logan P. Smith

Plum Pretty

Nothing as summery and delicious as a round ripe plum and it’s a wonderful color for mid summer prettiness. Aradhana Voight knows that for sure with her cute little dress being offered at the Dressing Room. With its floral plum print, almost swimsuit like back and frilly skirt, it’s a flirty little dress for playing in the summer. I styled it with pretty jewelry from Mouse Mimistrobell that has an almost antique feel. Sexy prim toe slip-ons from Siddean Munro give me a boost and a little sexiness.

Plum Pretty

My skin is aida Ewing’s newest, and I am absolutely charmed by it. It has more detail and realism than past skins with its freckles and more textured skin. I love this make-up combo. I think that is aida’s biggest asset—the makeups she makes. And her eyebrows are pretty awesome. One of Truth’s new hairs tops my head with a color change bow. And my eyes are a fantastic color from Ikon Innovia.

Plum Pretty

Shake it! ;)

Hair: >TRUTH< Juliette – mocha by Truth Hawks for >TRUTH< *

Skin: -Glam Affair- JadisV2 MedTan – D HB 11 by aida Ewing for –Glam Affair- *

Eyes: FASHISM ‘Sunrise’ Eyes – Deep Rose (ML) by Ikon Innovia for FASHISM *

Dress: :Mashooka: Mirna dress {for TDR} by Aradhana Voight for Mashooka, available at the Dressing Room *

Necklace and earrings: Dark Mouse Vintage Troll Necklace – Silver (Chest) and Dark Mouse Vintage Troll Earrings – Silver by Mouse Mimistrobell for Dark Mouse *

Ring: Dark Mouse Statement Ring – Brilliance (Left) by Mouse Mimistrobell for Dark Mouse *

Shoes: Slink Destiny Heels Plum by Siddean Munro for SLink *

 

Boxed In

Boxed In

What do you do when you decide to only include content from one event? You get yourself boxed in. As when I was blogging Fashion for Life (wherein I spent *weeks* only showing the content produced by participants), I have decided to do one blog showing an avatar created solely from content from the second Platinum hunt, which you would think wouldn’t be that hard but turned out to be a bit challenging (due to the variety of styles and the availability of different elements–I am literally covered in boxes of goodies!). Despite that, I was able to assemble a mighty awesome look.

Boxed In

Start with this sexy sophisticated outfit from Jamie Holmer. With its cute little gray wool skirt and black belt, choice of white or black tops (both included!) and sheer dark tights, it’s a complete outfit for the sexy sophisticate. At a mere 10L, it’s a STEAL for the work of one of SL’s best ensemble creators. Then you have the jewelry from the likes of Donna Flora and Zaara Kohime. I realize I am mixing metals here, but I couldn’t decide which to show, so I showed both. How can you beat paying 10L each for some of the best jewelry in SL?

Boxed In

A hair with color change band from one of SL’s most august hair makers, Elikapeka Tiramisu, has to be worth more than the mere 10L being charged. Add to that this gorgeous skin from AtomicSparkle Skytower (who has folded all her creations under the umbrella brand—Verve), and you have a pretty hot look. Apply eyeshadow from Lindsay Rozen to add a little sparkle and color.

Boxed In

Finally, find some incredible fierce shoes from Nardya Rousselot. Check out those spikes! Nardya has played it safe by borrowing the idea of a colored sole from Christian Laboutin without having to be taken to court in doing so, as Yves Saint Laurent was. The shape of this shoe is simply hot! (And only 10L! Eee!)

Boxed In

I boxed myself in with a pose box from Claire Dallin, also available in the second Platinum Hunt, going on now til August 31. Look for a little box that resembles a Tiffany’s box. You’ll find beautiful things inside ;)

Hair: [e] Parade – Black 07 by Elikapeka Tiramisu for [elikatira] *

Skin: *VERVE* SKIN-INA-Sunblush-FALL by AtomicSparkle Skytower for Verve *

Makeup: ROZENA ~Platina eyeshadow~ grey by Lindsay Rozen for ROZENA *

Eyes: FASHISM ‘Sunrise’ Eyes – Grey (ML) by Ikon Innovia for FASHISM *

Outfit: INDI Designs – Misha (Platinum Hunt) by Jamie Holmer for INDI Designs *

Earrings: Zaara : Anjami earrings (Platinum Hunt) by Zaara Kohime for Zaara

Necklace: BARBARELLA necklace by Squinternet Larnia for Donna Flora *

Shoes: NX-Nardcotix Iceli Spiked Stiletto Black by Nardya Rousselot for Nardcotix *

Pose box: *BOOM* Platinum Model by Claire Dallin for *BOOM* *

La Côte d’Azur

The Riviera

[The French Riviera is] a sunny place for shady people. ~ W. Somerset Maugham

The Riviera

Ah, the breeze, the air, the glamour—the French Riviera is where I wish I could go for August. I can only pretend in SL. But it’s not pretend that I am wearing a RL fashion designer’s work when I don this dress from Meiling Couturier. Based on the designs of the real life fashion house, Meiling Inc, the collection in SL is very fashion forward and beautiful. Of course other RL fashion designers have been in SL—most notably Shenlei Flesheart and Nyla Cheeky—but Meiling is from Trinidad and Tobago—a whole different fashion market, and she brings with her the experience for catering to the wealthy clientele that visit the Carribean islands where her boutique is located. (Meiling is also, incidentally, the mentor to one of this season’s Project Runway contestants, Anya Ayoung-Chee, who we find out in the first episode has a great design eye but few skills in sewing. She pulls it off anyway.)

I show the Perla dress, a piece perfectly geared to her clientele with its almost casually open back but tailored classic collar and long flowing skirt. Its elegance reflects its wearer—classic in cut and style, it shows off the tan you may have gotten sunbathing on the yacht with its revealing back. The dip-dyed hem is a perfect accent for the gown, perhaps suggesting a hem wet from strolling in the sand. I absolutely love the elegance and classic styling of this gown—a defiite departure from the fantasy gowns of SL.

My shoes are a couture design from rei2 Aya, and being sold at the new little shopping event called “Collabor88” wherein everything offered is priced at a very steep discount for its quality, proving an opportunity for people to get an exclusive piece of couture at a steal. What should we call these campaigns? Events? Sales? Trunk shows?

The Riviera

I show it with a sunkissed skin from Alexandra Barcelos, one of the offerings for the second Platinum Hunt. I am not always keen on hunts—I don’t think designers are obligated to constantly make content for free for our amusement. The time we spend hunting for their items it is not enough payback for them. However, this hunt was organized to allow the designers to receive a token 10L in exchange for offering an item they might sell for 400L or more. It’s WELL worth the 10L spent for each of the items offered, many more of which I will be showing. The designers participating are some of SL’s best. I am glad this time around now the hunt is also freed from its campaign of “awareness,” which had good intentions but very poor execution. I hope this hunt gets you back in these designers’ stores and seeing their great work and spending a little beyond the 10L.

My hair is a beautiful updo from Elikapeka Tiramisu, who has captured the idea of a cool breeze running through a casually piled updo. My jewelry is from Danielle Astonia and without shadow on, shows without a shine. I wonder what the deal is with shiny things not showing as such when shadow is on? It’s very aggravating.

The Riviera

You’ll find me dining in Saint-Tropez or gambling in Monte Carlo, on the arm of a handsome Italian millionaire ;)

Hair: [e] Away – Red 08 by Elikapeka Tiramisu for [Elikatira]

Skin: Platinum – Filthy Skin by Alexandra Barcelos for Filthy Skin, available on the Platinum Hunt

Eyes: FASHISM ‘Sunrise’ Eyes – Deep Absinthe (ML) by Ikon Innovia for FASHISM *

Dress: M – La Perla Gown Boxed by Meiling Couturier for Meiling

Jewelry: *La Forgia Jewels – Mia Set*-Amber by Danielle Astonia for La Forgia

Nails: [MANDALA]Option short Nails set/Basic skin nails by Kikunosuke Eel for [MANDALA]

Shoes: R2 “mana”nude by rei2 Aya for R2, available at COLLABOR88