COLLABOR88 – ON SAFARI WITH KITTY

Jacket front

 One of the reasons I’m so addicted to Second Life, as I’ve probably said many, many times before, is that I get to live vicariously ‘through’ my avatar. 

For example, Kitty gets to wear things that I can only ever dream about.

In real life I’m a bit of a chunky monkey, not that I care especially as I’m happy just the way I am (The horror! Someone who is fine about their flab! Have I no shame?!), but in Second Life I tend towards a more slender yet curvaceous figure.

In other words, I actually have a waist instead of a spare tyre..oh the humanity, so boxy jackets have become a thing for me in recent months. You may have read my post from December 2013  where I waxed lyrical about the  EMERY Denim Jacket, which is to my mind still one of the best jackets in-world and brilliant for teaming with other items like long dresses and skirts and the like, but I’m always on the look out for another for my collection.
And I’ve just  found it.

Now, when I heard that C88 was going to be a ‘Safari Chic’ theme I have to confess I was a tad disappointed because to me Safaris automatically conjure up images of Victorian moustached men-types proudly showing off the latest beast that they’ve shot and are shipping home to their parlours to be stuffed. I can’t say I’m keen on hunting, especially big-game which I think is the most pointless and cruel kind. So my initial thoughts were that I’d give C88 a miss this round.

But I haven’t, and boy am I glad I changed my mind because if I hadn’t ventured forth and battled my way through the crowds I’d have missed out on so much. In fact, I’ve brought an absolute shit-ton of amazing fashion at this month’s event already, and I’ll be sharing it with you this week, but by gum I MUST tell you about this jacket. OH MY GODS JUST LOOK AT THIS RUDDY JACKET! Isn’t it PERFECT?!

It’s from THE SECRET STORE and is the kind of jacket that I have been after for an absolute age. It’s more formal than my denim number, but still casual enough to wear anywhere without looking out of place. It’s one of those items that you see and automatically stop in your tracks and squeal “I NEED THIS!!” in a pathetic manner. It’s a banquet on a stick of jacket happy.

For a start the shape is beautiful. There are no sharp angles or zips, just undulating curves and a lovely, slightly raised neckline too. I’m incredibly taken by the fact that there is no random frippery and fanciful decoration to the front either. To be honest I’m sure it would have looked swell with buttons and adornments of all types, but for me it is absolutely stonking just as it is, with pockets to the breast that are neither fussy nor boring, instead they sit flush to the fabric and are just enough to stop the front from looking too plain.

The shoulders do see some militaristic detail; there are buttons, but they don’t scream “Look at me! I’m a military jacket!” at you, they’re quite subtle and unobtrusive really. The sleeves are a delight; a little gathered at the top to create a slightly puffy appearance, but not so much that the jacket tips into the Gothic realm. They are finished nicely too, with the cuffs ending neatly on the wrist.

Jacket back

The back of the jacket is just as excellent as the front. It’s gathered into the middle and is finished with the same button detail that featured on the shoulders, but again it’s not too ostentatious. The detailing on the buttons is rather good and the creasing that is etched into the whole item is very authentic looking. I can’t quite work out what the fabric is; in close up it seems to be some sort of herringbone linen/cotton mix, but I can’t tell. (I do know that if you swap the buttons for some with a touch of bling and change the fabric to velvet you’ll have the perfect going out jacket for Autumn/Winter- there you go THE SECRET STORE, you can have that idea for free! )

But I digress. This is a really smashing item and one that you really should include in your virtual wardrobe. I’ve invested in the black option, BUT there are ten colours available and if you can splash out on the fat pack at L$888 then I’d strongly suggest that you do. This singular item will finish off so many outfits beautifully that it would be almost scandalous to not own the ‘Noah Jacket’ in every tantalising option.

I’ve teamed it with another absolutely cracking find, the Kafue Mini-Skirt by BAIASTICE. It always gives me a lot of pleasure to see Sissy Pessoa’s latest designs because she’s worked so hard to become one of the most successful labels on the grid and really deserves her place among the fashion elite. The Kafue skirt is another example of a simple idea executed beautifully by Sissy, featuring a stylish belt that sits on the waist and a skirt in either pattern or plain fabric. Sissy always makes great fabric choices I think, and this skirt offers some great options and will offer heaps of wear. Of course, I had to have the cat print, but there are ten colours and six prints to choose from in the range at just L$88 a pop.

SHOES
Last but not least, on my feet I’m sporting some rather splendid recycled tyre sandals courtesy of BOOM. This work so well that I think I’ll be wearing them for the entirety of my virtual summer! You all know what a texture whore I am, and these have been textured perfectly to represent their origins; when you zoom in you can ‘see’ the dimples and roughness that suggests they’re recycled items. There’s a tarnished look to the buckles and a suggestion of a cork inner-sole too. They look really comfy actually! They can only be worn with SLink flat feet, but that’s no hardship; throw on your favourite nail lacquer and your feet will look a treat!

Finally, I found some cracking poses at COLLABOR88 that I really do need to mention. They’re from PURPLE POSES (a guest at this month’s event) and I confess I hadn’t heard of the brand before. As soon as I’d purchased these I knew I wanted more, so I popped over to Audrey Guter’s studio where I was pretty dazzled by the range on offer all at really decent prices too! The set available at C88 is called ‘Rachel‘ and they’re really nice modelling poses that I can see myself using lots in the future, not just in this post. Sometimes you just want a pose that isn’t too Avant-garde, but still suggests movement and will look great in photos without too much hassle; these poses fit the bill and are just what I was after.

I would say go and buy all of these items right now, but seeing as it’s day one of C88 you don’t need me to tell you that your chances of getting in first try are slim to none!

Instead, why not check out the Flickr feed or the official blog for a while before you try your luck. And trust me when I say it’s definitely worth it!

KITTY WEARS:

Kitty goes ga-ga for Gacha!

When I was a little girl, Gacha machines as we now know them didn’t really exist. (By that I mean the large gift-giving behemoths filled with toys and candy that they’ve become today)

Gachas in my day were much smaller in stature and the prizes were usually a plastic ring and a Bazooka Joe, if you were lucky.  My local Gacha was outside the ‘Blue Star Café’ in the village where I grew up.   In fact, we didn’t even call it a Gacha.   I’d never heard of that word until a few years ago.  In fact I don’t know what we called that particular machine.  But I can remember that it had a motorcycle chain holding it down, although no-one would ever have wanted to steal it, and it was 2p a punt.( Let me put it into context for you; the local newsagent had one of those plastic mannequins outside of a little boy wearing callipers collecting pennies for The Spastic Society!  How times have changed, and yup, I’m *that* old! )

I think Gachas are now much more common and cost a few quid, if not more, but you can get some pretty awesome prizes from them . Looking back though I was quite happy with my Bazooka Joe gum. They were brilliant actually; with their little comics inside the wrapper. I never did save them up and send off for a prize though; I kinda wish that I had now.

Now, I was going to say that you can enjoy Gacha in Second Life without the expense, but that’s a big fib, because the Gacha festival is upon us from March 1st (TOMORROW!!) and it’s going to cost you some serious lindens, purely because of the amount of amazing items that you can win. 

I’ve had a sneaky-peaky at the preview page and it’s left me giddy with excitement to the point of feeling like a kid waiting for Christmas day.  Seriously! I’ve been looking forward to this event all week, and now that it’s almost here I don’t know how I will sleep tonight knowing the amazing stuff that awaits.

And trust me when I say there are some truly amazing items to play for as well. From collectibles to clothing, to furniture, glasses, musical instruments, skins, poses, headgear, jewellery,avatars and even gypsy caravans!  There’s something for everyone at this event.  It is going to be IMMENSE.

I’m both pleased and pissed that there’s a tumblr where you can view the items. Pleased because it gives me a chance to work out what machines I’ll be hitting up tomorrow, and pissed because it just reaffirms the fact that I have about 24 hours to wait until the event starts.  I can’t wait that long; the tension is killing me!

So while I wait I’ll share with you some of the vendors that I’ll be visiting. Alas, I can’t visit every single one without taking out a pigging virtual loan or selling a body-part.  These are Gacha after all and there’s no guarantee what you’ll get, but some of the prizes are outstanding.

Let’s have a shufty at a few…

I’m all about collectibles, as my post earlier this week may have proved, so with that in mind I’ll definitely be visiting the NARDCOTIX ‘Puss Pillow’s vendor. I mean, this ticks ALL my boxes. Cats + Pillows= one happy kitty, and JUST LOOK AT THEM! They’re so bloody GORGEOUS! I’ll be having ALL of those thank you very much. L$50 a play, with  a choice of 12 pillows to win. It’s hard to pick a favourite from the picture but I will really be hoping to get either of the two rarest in that machine.

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HALF-DEER  have provided a range of cup-cakes that I’ll be hitting up with gusto.  I blooming LOVE cupcakes, and these look scrumptious, and are just too cute to not have in your virtual abode; there are ten to win at L$25 a shot. Again, I don’t mind which one I win from the selection either, so long as I end up with a full set! They will look darn tasty in my kitchen won’t they?

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Time for a rousing chorus of  “It’s so FLUFFYYY!” because INTRIGUE CO.  have designed a new selection of Plushie Pals for the event. They’re circus themed and look flipping brilliant! The rares in this machine are actually props, a tent and a marquee so that you can play Circus in Second Life. Again, they’re all stunning so no,  I can’t pick just one because I’ll be happy with any of them.  But then again, the Zebra is calling my name..!

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Every girl needs a teddy bear, and the Candy Bears from SWAY’S are just perfect companions for cuddling.  There are 24 to play for,  with the ‘Rainbow’ and Confetti’ bears being the rares in this selection.  At L$25 a play they’re not going to break the Linden bank too much either!

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If you can recall my previous post about the COMMONER Kitchen Storage Jars then you’ll know I’ll be throwing some more Linden their way and trying to win myself some of these Brash Cans. There are three sets to collect featuring vices, prescribed meds and glam attire. I’m not sure which ones I’ll aim for, although at this moment in time some Xanax wouldn’t go amiss! (I’m British, I had to ask what that stuff was for on Plurk..)

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My final collectible choice are the ‘Bento Friends’ Bento boxes from STANDBY. These are super cute with 11 animal themed mesh bento boxes to be won, and a rare item comprising of a table and cushions for you to use while enjoying your bento feast. NOM!

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That’s my pick of the collectibles, so what about wearables?

Well, I’ll definitely be having a shot at winning some of the rare Wool Felt Cat Hats from MILK MOTION. There are *gulp* 60 to win, but I have my eye on the starry cap; it looks rather swish, don’t you think?  I’m pretty sure this is going to be a hugely popular gacha item, and is just L$50 a go.

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TABLEAU VIVANT  have two fantastic Gachas this round.  First up are some back-packs. I don’t often wear bags in Second Life, but these would change my mind. They look great, are non-rigged mesh and feature resize scripts too for a perfect fit. Not only that but I’m intrigued by the three rare items in this Gacha, because two of them are surprises. We can see that one of them is a bunny back-pack which looks unbelievably squeesome, but the other two are shaded out so you can’t see what they are.  It’ll cost you  L$75 each time you try to find out.  Worth a shot? It’s one of the more pricey Gacha items, but in my opinion more than worth it.

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And so is the Spirit Hood available from TABLEAU VIVANT’s second gacha in the event; this features a virtual version of those animal hoods with mittens built in that everyone was wearing around Christmas (yes, I’ve got one in real life, shush) Judging by the picture this looks to be quite a promising item, BUT it’s one-size rigged mesh so I recommend that you try a demo before parting with your L$75. If the demo fits, then there are 27 to win. Fingers crossed the demo fits me then!

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NYLON OUTFITTERS  have an ‘Art Nails’ mesh nails Gacha at the event and you can win one of ten sets of nails. It doesn’t say on the poster if any of them are rarer than others, but I certainly have my eyes fixed on the ‘9 Lives’ and ‘Party animal’ set. At L$50 a try I’ll be keeping my fingers crossed for some luck on this one; they’re rather fancy aren’t they? I love the quirky presentation and styling of these so much!Image

I’ll also be hoping for good things at THE SECRET STORE  where you can win a pair of vintage roller-skates.  There are twenty different styles, with three rares. I’ve not been roller-skating in Second Life for a LONG time, but if I win the Panther skates I may be inclined to have another go!

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There are a number of skin Gachas to play at the event, and all of them look totally fabulous so I guess I’ll be having a punt in all of them, but the one I will definitely be hitting a smidgen harder than the others is from PINK FUEL.  Why? Well because they have a skin called ‘Von D’ which looks right up my street. There are 7 skins available in the Gacha and all of them look very enticing and original. The Elphaba, Cyber Grey and Ch-Ch-Oco skins have really caught my eye too; in fact I’d be happy winning any of them. L$100 for a quality skin? Yes please!

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I haven’t told you about every single Gacha machine at this event because at the time of writing MORE images keep being added to the site, and to be honest I’m squealing so much in real life I’m about to give myself heart-failure.  I’ve not told you about the gorgeous dress from BAIASTICE,  nor the amazing mesh lamps from TROMPE LOEIL or the bedroom furniture from SCARLET APPLE, or the hair from TRUTH.  OMG, some of the brightest and best that the grid has to offer are all here, and then some! There’s an official vendor list here.

If I was to try to write about everything that would mean I’d be here all night working myself up into a frenzy and I’m excited enough as it is. I have a sneaky feeling that it’s also going to be an utter swine to get into as well, so it may be one of those rare occasions in-world where it may be kind to the sim and to the rest of us if you consider de-primming and using a low-arc avatar for your visit.

Of course, with these being Gacha items you can transfer them, so that means if you get duplicate items you can swap them. The fun is in seeing what you get after all, but if you’re not lucky you’re your winnings why not  ask around on Plurk or in ‘The Arcade’ group to see if anyone has any swapsies? But don’t forget you can also gift your winnings to friends, and that for me is key.

In-world events like this are all about having fun and sharing the love with those nearest and dearest, and I can think of one chum in particular who may find herself receiving the odd item from me, especially if it’s too pink for my liking!

Enjoy the event guys, hope you get all the goodies you wish for!

You can keep up to date with the latest by following The Arcade on Plurk

OMFG, just as I finished writing this post this appeared on the list:

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<Kitty expires from excitement>

P.S. I haven’t posted a LM because I don’t know where it is yet!! Will update when I know:)

Oh, and a quick note- be sure to check out the official Arcade blog.  There’s an amazing photo competition with an astonishing array of prizes up for grabs that you must enter!

(All items at the event can be seen here. Imagery featured in this blog-post is from The Arcade Shopping Guide site. Huge thanks to Octagons Yazimoto, Katharine McGinnis, Emery Milneaux and Umberto Giano and all the vendors involved for bringing this event to the grid!)