Friday, February 12, 2016

Pop Culture, Presidents and Politics - Featuring [SWANK]: Homebase and *Js* Creations

Pop culture tells us what to like and not to like every day on social media. If something 'trends' it means a whole buncha people decided to like something. In the US, it's another political season, a time of pundits and politics, and presidential primaries. People tune in, talk and try to decide who they care about, if they care, and if they're supposed to show they care or keep it to themselves.
Because pop culture goes live every second of every minute of every hour of every day, it's in a constant state of flux. As Heidi Klum claimed about fashion design, "One minute you're in and the next minute you're out..." and sometimes it doesn't even take a minute. Manipulating emotion and the way people perceive the world around may appear easy, with so much access out there, but I think maybe it's even more difficult because while it may be easy to convince someone of something for a hot second, it's very difficult to convince anyone that something in this minute is just as important as it was in the previous minute and even more difficult to convince them to maintain an opinion about it for more than a minute into our ever changing future.

I don't know that politics and fashion are so far different from one another. They both rely on opinion, pop culture and people talking. I've noticed a lot of buzz one week for this trend, and another week, that trend disappears and another takes its place. The longer something stays current, in our social NOW, the more likely it is to succeed. I don't know what your personal taste might be, politically, but I imagine that it's an ever changing and evolving thing.

[SWANK] appeals to a wide array of interests giving itself staying power in the pop culture driven world we exist in here. More choices means more trending on more topics at any given moment. You're bound to find something you like, no matter the story you want to tell, or the way you want to express your YOU in your NOW. Items from Homebase provide decor for many settings like this Urban table set. The gown from *Js* Creations comes in multiple gem tones, the one shown here being saphire.

Featuring NEW February Items From [SWANK]
Theme: 50 Shades Of Red
http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Manatoba/188/11/2001
*Js*Creations Gem Dress Saphire
Homebase Urban Table

j'adore Poses
Chop Zuey Chakra Warrior Mens Cuff
Chop Zuey Moments Mens Earrings
Chop Zuey Dragon Flight Mens Necklace
{ZoZ} Jazlyn Heels
October's 4Seasons Guiselle Lily Skin Package for February Makeover Room
October's 4Seasons Ombre Ocean Lips
October's 4Seasons Metallic Sky Evening Spendor Eyeshadow
Analog Dog Tootsie Light Browns

Thursday, February 11, 2016

Imma Tell Ya Some Only Cuz I Lu Ya - Featuring [SWANK]: (Byrne) and DuJour

Sometimes it feels like I'm listening to someone speak in another language, even when I'm listening to someone speak English. I'm from the South, USA. I know there are many times I've said something with that southern drawl that others from around the world completely missed what I said, so I know it goes both ways. I love accents too, so I'm a puddle of goo when I hear some people speak. Melt. Drool. Ahhh.
I listened to Jason Derulo's latest chart topping hit, and watched him dance, which is another thing that makes me melt and swoon, and I knew what he was saying but I didn't. It was like he was speaking a new version of English. I'm sure he said, "I'm going to tell you something, only because I love you."  Except it came out a lot more like what I put in my blog title today. Imma Tell Ya Some Only Cuz I Lu You. It's alright though. Language does that morph thing, from corner to corner, across the pond (English, UK style, rocks too!), down the street and across time. If I said a sentence like the southern girls did a hundred years ago, I'm fairly sure I wouldn't understand me either. It's a good thing that music and art and people have another type of language, love and dance and all sorts of things that affect their body language. I might not always get every word, but I'm fairly sure I pick up the meaning.

Clothes speak another language. A casual outfit says something totally different than a look worn into a business meeting, and yet another outfit one chooses for a first date clearly vocalizes still another point of life. Today's look from [SWANK] continues to show the sexy brilliance of red woven through so many of the looks this month. 84 designers with hundreds of products worked their magic for every language of love, passion, friendship, and more. The Passionata dress from DuJour paired with the Miele Rouge boots by (Byrne) - one of this month's gifts found at [SWANK], communicate in a fiery feisty way the mood of the chick kicking it on a brilliant Thursday afternoon, just looking for a little mischief.

Featuring NEW February Items From [SWANK]
Theme: 50 Shades Of Red
http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Manatoba/188/11/2001
(Byrne) Miele Rouge Boots
DuJour Passionata Dress

[elika] Abbey
Gaeline Mesh Lashes Starlia
MODA All In One Marilyn Makeup
Blacklace Flirt Cut Denim Jeans Dark Blue
Focus Poses
Chop Zuey Heart & Soul Jewelry Set
October's 4Seasons

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Rekt Chasing Cars - Featuring [SWANK]: [Wood Works] and *GLITTER*

I knew Snow Patrol's Chasing Cars song before today. I'd heard it played on Internet radio and in the car, inundated with it for a while, and it moved into that pocket of 'I really liked that song but it's old now and something else has come along' category. Then I watched the finale of Grey's Anatomy Season 11 on Netflix and heard the song played several times in the two hour program and I was rekt.
Characters from beloved books and programs become part of our world and when they feel something, if they're well written and well acted, they make us feel something. Music works magic as well, like a maestro accustomed to directing the feelings of those who hear. Couple a good character, a good story arc, a good season finale and music like Chasing Cars by Snow Patrol and WoW! I had tears QQ for days. So moved was I by the music that I did one of those teen things, shut myself away in my room and listened to it over and over and over again on Youtube. WoW! QQ

I've found that different art in other parts of my world affect me deeply. I think that's the purpose of art, truly, and when I feel something, I remember it a lot longer than something that's just meh. It's one of many reasons I love embracing the vast variety of Second Life virtual design, virtual creation, virtual art, and then making my own with it, like the photo in blue I took of today's style from [SWANK]. The shelving comes from [Wood Works], Artistry Candle Sconce and Touch Of Red Decor. The Ocean Queen gown with layers that move constantly all around, unique depth of design with mesh bits along the bodice and waist, and a see through netting cloth comes from *GLITTER*. Serenity and delicate beauty ooze from the overall look, the art connecting to me emotionally. It may be the 50 Shades of Red theme, and there's a wee bit of red in my look, but today, it's all about the music and the emotion.

Featuring NEW February Items From [SWANK]
Theme: 50 Shades Of Red
http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Manatoba/188/11/2001
[Wood Works] Touch of Red Decor Shelf
[Wood Works] Artistry Candle Sconce
*GLITTER* Ocean Queen Sea/Gold

Truth Hair Fernanda
Maxi Gossamer Mesh Lashes Inverted Crown
October's 4Seasons Guiselle Lily Skin Package for February Makeover Room
NOYA White Pearls Jewelry

KMADD Poses

Tuesday, February 9, 2016

X-Files Swanky Back In the Day and Now - Featuring [SWANK]: LEGENDAIRE, [RnR]Swag, BluPrintz and Outside the Box

Sometimes I call styling for Second Life 'playing barbie' because it's a little like getting something new for a doll and spending the afternoon dressing your doll in all the new fun things. At other times, I like to take it to the next level and imagine what the doll will do once dressed to the nines, all swanky and ready to killit. 
One place I've noticed a lot of fancy, high end costuming occurs in really good (and really terrible) spy flicks. I'd love to be brilliant and beautiful, licensed to kill, and deviously working with my team to secure details and data that will ultimately save the day... in heels! Last night I was watching this week's new episode of the X-Files. Scully, the quintessential beauty that she is both in the 1993 and in 2016, commented that they used to do the dark AND stairs and she did them in heels! Of course a sexy spy or in her case FBI agent peering into every dark and unusual corner of the world will always have the right look and it almost always includes heels. Sexy with a side order of sexy, of course.
I had to look up [SWANK] to be sure it still meant the same thing in today's lingo as it did the last time I looked in a dictionary. Loads of words have double entendres, hidden meanings or just mean the exact opposite of what they used to mean - back in the day when I did darkness and stairs in heels. Swank still means the same thing - to display one's wealth, knowledge, or achievements in a way that is intended to impress others. Every time I prepare a new look with items from [SWANK], I keep this definition in mind. Today I have on a new dress from [RnR]Swag called Timber. The heels, because of course they must be included! are from LEGENDAIRE, from the Rose Gown set that has a gown and heels included. I put out some of the decor created by some of the [SWANK] designers as well, the hearts on the wall are two different cute 'post it note' displays called C.L. I Love You (yellow) and C.L. Heart (red) made by BluPrintz and the Hippie Shelf and Crate 2 come from Outside the Box.

Monday, February 8, 2016

My $up3r P0W3r$ - Featuring [SWANK] [R]Allure and Baboom

Super powers have been around for as long as humans have been telling tales, passing down oral tradition and letting the younger generation know what came before theirs. Sometimes it was as simple as retelling a story about a hunt, enlivening the story a bit by exaggeration, the animal so big, the creature so fast, and yet with cunning and creativity, the hunt was yet successful. Ultimately, the super power in a human boiled down to the ability to think through things to overcome obstacles. Rarely did we outclass other species with quickness or strength, but almost always, we could outthink. 
In modern society, much of life is lived within four walls. Our daydreams contain our super powers, the feats it takes to merely get through the day. We tell stories of overcoming adversity, plowing past stereotypes and winning against slurs that hurt. The phrase "what doesn't kill us makes us stronger" remains a truth. Even if much of what we battle seems far removed from those hands on moments of our forefathers, we still muster great personal energy and strength to overcome battles. We still seek within ourselves a super power, an ability to make it in our world.
Fantasy is fun. Seeing through something with X-ray vision or throwing lightning bolts with fingertips entertains us. Media saturates our world with the super-crazy shenanigans of the mighty heroes with those fantastical otherworldly powers and we cheer and root for our favorite. At the end of the day, however, I'm sure that our super powers remain in our ability to think. If more people stopped to do so, perhaps there would be less negative energy to overcome with those real super powers we exert every day. If we didn't have bias according to race and creed, sexual orientation and other stuff that doesn't define anyone honestly, all that thought and energy could go somewhere useful. I maintain that my super power is love. I wish I could say that I had the ability to love unconditionally but I still fail at times. I do my best, however, and think that in those moments when I succeed, I've truly embraced the biggest super power of them all.

This month at [SWANK], designers contributed items according to the theme 50 Shades Of Red. We celebrate St. Valentine's Day and the color red and love. As I continue to style outfits, I continue to think of my super power, and how I might touch my world with it. I'm wearing the new Red Dream dress from Baboom and beautiful Tristan heels from [R]Allure.

Featuring NEW February Items From [SWANK]
Theme: 50 Shades Of Red
http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Manatoba/188/11/2001
[R]Allure Tristan High Heels Black
Baboom Red Dream

Truth Hair Freya
Gaeline Mesh Lashes Phantasmagoria
October's 4Seasons Guiselle Lily Skin Package from February's Makeover Room
Beloved Jewelry Chantelle Gold Ruby Earrings
Corpus Poses

Sunday, February 7, 2016

IIGHT, Dis Tots Adorbs - Featuring [SWANK] !IT!, *HH*, EDELFABRIK and MARBS

We live in an abbreviated world. Everything flies by at the speed of life and sometimes it feels like we have to grab what we can when we can just to survive. Sometimes, though, it's alright to pause, take a deep breath, go for a long walk in the woods or find a place you've never visited and explore it.
Did you know that long before Twitter or Snapchat, the origin of abbreviations like omg and l84 comes from txt messaging on cell phones. Phone plans began including SMS (short message service) as an option in the mid 1990s but every letter of the text cost a few cents and it wouldn't take long at all for texts to cost a bundle, so abbreviations helped save money and time, and the rest is history, as they say.
I love to explore Second Life, find places that are similar to places I'd love to play and visit in my world away from virtual places if I had an unlimited pocketbook and unlimited energy. Sometimes I end up in fantastical places that would never exist in reality, places that make me think of favorite books, favorite far away lands, and places that make me laugh or smile.

When I put together this look, I was surprised by how many pieces from the [SWANK] February event I could find that worked with a gray and blue color palette. Hawker's House has this terrific beanie (with several color hair options to wear) and the high top tennis shoes, both with a muted gray tone. The tied knot top and skirt comes from MARBS, a necklace and bangles pulled from the EDELFABRIK SuperStellar box (there are multiple items in the SuperStellar box including necklace, bangles, heels, stockings and a thong). And lastly the gems from Indulge Temptations Diva design round out the overall style.

Featuring NEW February Items From [SWANK]
Theme: 50 Shades Of Red
http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Manatoba/188/11/2001
EDELFABRIK SuperStellar Necklace and Bangle (Bangles, Necklace, Heels Stockings and Thong included in SuperStellar set)
!IT! (Indulge Temptations) Diva Diamonds Belly Gems
*HH* (Hawkers House) Ladies Mesh Hightop Jamin' Sneakers Gray
*HH* (Hawkers House) Ladies Mesh Knit Beanies Heather
MARBS Marynol Knotted Dress

Gaeline Mesh Lashes Starlia
October's 4Seasons Glamour Ombre Ocean Lips
October's 4Seasons Innocence Subtle Purple Eyeshadow
October's 4Seasons Guiselle Lily Skin Package from February Makeover Room

Beachy Fashion Fun Will Melt Your Popsicle - Featuring A.F.I Designs and Featuring [SWANK] Ravens Blade

Every time I try something new from A.F.I designs, I know it's going to be fun, a little daring, and a lot provocative. It's just built into every new look, just like the latest Glam Love dress. From the front, it's a cute mini, another glance reveals more.
It's a dress that begged a trip to the beach. By the time February comes round, many begin thinking about Spring Break, summer beach fun and how to get a healthy bit of sun before it arrives.
Playful heels from Ravens Blade, part of the Truffles set at [SWANK] for February, complete the look. (In addition to the shoes shown here, Truffles also includes a dress.)

Featuring A.F.I Designs Glam Love Dress
http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Kmadd%20Enterprise/199/39/4002
-and-
Featuring NEW February Items From [SWANK]
Theme: 50 Shades Of Red
http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Manatoba/188/11/2001
Ravens Blade Truffles Heels (Dress and heels included in Truffles set)

Truth Hair Dasha
Maxi Gossamer Lashes Party Swallow Wings Red/Black
October's 4Seasons Guiselle Lily Skin from February Makeover Room
*+Crie Style+* Cantabile Glasses
.:JUMO:. Nuit Clutch Black
[Modern Couture] Jewelry Pietra Black
Gala Fashion Design Love Potion Necklace
Vestige Poses - Female Noir Set