Behind the times?

unfashionIf this were an SL fashion blog, it would be a complete disaster! To begin with, I have absolutely no interest in reviewing the designs and latest styles churned out by the fashion houses of the virtual world – which, I’m guessing is pretty much a pre-requisite of the job! I don’t even read SL fashion blogs, if I can help it. Then there’s my often too honest approach to saying what I think: I have no qualms at all about being blunt when I think something is crap or downright ugly, which again would probably not endear me to the SL rag trade, who – almost without exception, if you do read the aforementioned blogs – apparently never put a foot wrong when it comes to style, panache and trendsetting. Then there’s my complete inability to keep tabs on what I’m wearing – it appears to be the law, (even with non-fashion, non-review sites), that any picture must be accompanied by an exhaustive list of every single item of clothing, skin, hair and accessory worn, together with SLurl, price, inside leg measurement, Windlight setting, time of day, mood, and whatever the reviewer had for breakfast that morning. Most of the time, I have absolutely no idea where half the stuff I’m wearing came from!

And, just for a moment, let’s consider those glowing, perfectly composed, airbrushed to within an inch of their SLife images… Sorry, but ain’t nobody got time for that! (I lie… Many bloggers evidently do have the time, inclination and talent for that. I don’t!).Nothing against fashion bloggers and blogs – they have role to play, but it’s one that I’m quite definitely not cut out for.

There is another reason why I’d make a rubbish fashionista… My avatar is not exactly what you might call cutting-edge when it comes to current trends in fashion.

My skin – wait for it – is 2003 vintage; I still possess and regularly wear non-mesh clothing that I’ve owned almost from day one of joining SL; I own a huge number of shoes designed to be worn with, the now hopelessly broken, invisiprims, (but they work just as well with a well-fitted alpha mask). I have no mesh body parts whatsoever, which causes me to frequently boycott stores that only cater for Slink feet, hands and whatever else of that ilk it’s possible to wear; I have no idea how appliers work; I own more flexi hair than meshy hair and, although it’s far from perfect, nothing will induce me to part with my slider-crafted shape. From a fashion perspective, I am stuck in the digital equivalent of the Dark Ages!

sm2_001I don’t think I look all that shabby. I may be running round in the SL equivalent of jumble sale cast-offs, but in the main I think I manage to carry off ‘presentable’ fairly well – people don’t give me strange looks on buses, mothers don’t drag their prim kids to the other side of the street to avoid me, and babies don’t burst into tears at the mere sight of me. In all my time in SL, only two people have ever criticised my appearance – and I do realise I’m probably inviting disaster here – the first time was from an incredibly helpful and, alas long-forgotten, avatar who gave me – a complete noob – a telling off for looking grotty, then spent well over an hour introducing me to the joys of quality freebies, AOs and attention to detail, that turned me from a diaster to a halfway decent avatar. I’m still grateful to them after all these years, and the skin that they introduced me too, which I’m still wearing now, is testament to their good taste – well, I think so, anyway. The second attempted avatar ‘upgrade’ wasn’t nearly so successful: My critic managed to turn me from halfway decent to gaudy freak, and at a not-inconsiderable cost too! That’s the last time I’ll ever change my inworld appearance to please anyone. When I saw the result on screen, I actually cried in RL!

I realise we have to move with the times and take advantage of whatever new advances come our way, and I’m no luddite when it comes to doing so. I do wear mesh clothing frequently, I think it looks great for the most part, but I still get irritated when it alters my shape. I have no problem with people wanting to look good, and some do look stunning with all the enhancements and improvements that are available to avatars today, but there’s a thrifty part of me that rebels against the thought of all that perfectly good stuff confused12_001residing inside my inventory with years of life left in it, which progress says I should be consigning to the trash can. I really wouldn’t like to think about how much I’ve spent on clothes over the years, not to mention the freebies, gifts, hunt items and miscellaneous whatnots that I’ve collected and which now form my virtual wardrobe and ‘body shop’ – to throw them away, simply because fashion dictates them to be ‘so last season’, or not the ‘happening’ trend, is not something I can find myself easily doing. Why get rid of something that is perfectly serviceable and does the job that it’s intended to do?

I know that there will always be those who want the latest, most up-to-date and trendy goodness, but to say that it’s superior to what went before is – to my mind – short-sighted and not necessarily true. If, for example, I decide my system feet are so ugly I never want to see them again, then I’m effectively also deciding that the only shoes I will ever wear in future will be high, medium or flat – no options for any deviation, playfulness (yes, I have been known to wear clown shoes!), or the ability just to slip any pair of shoes on I want, without also having to remove my feet too. Perhaps I’m missing something here, but system feet may well be ugly, but boy are they flexible too.

You may accuse me of being stuck in the past and change-averse, nothing could be further from the truth, but I’d also like to think I’m pretty savvy when it comes to using the resources I have and getting the most from them, it may not mean that I’m the most up-to-date and fashionable avatar in SL, but that’s true for RL as well!

s. x

I wear your granddad’s clothes
I look incredible
I’m in this big ass coat
From that thrift shop down the road
Macklemore & Ryan Lewis – Thrift Shop

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