Wednesday, January 16, 2013

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Meet Emma Gilmour: RL Fashion Blogger, SL Fashion Creator

There's a girl named Tiffany who blogs about real fashion that's Offbeat & Inspired, and when she published this post of how she dressed last New Year's Eve, I asked her what this mega-stylish ensemble would look like in Second Life, if she could show me the translation. Because, you see, in Second Life, Tiffany is an avatar named Emma Gilmour (and sometimes Elie Spot), and Emma is the co-creator of a successful SL fashion brand named Mon Tissu that's a favorite of NWN readers. And so Emma/Tiffany did, and she and her avatar look like this:

SL mixed reality profile Emma avatar Tiffany RL 2

"I actually only started a RL blog about 5 months ago," Tiffany told me, "so I haven't had the chance to take the real life styles I blog about to SL yet, but my RL style has always strongly influenced my SL style." Naturally I wanted to know more -- about how she discovered SL, how she became a SL designer, and much more still -- and she told me that too, read on, read on:

SL mixed reality profile Emma avatar Tiffany RL 4

How she discovered Second Life:

"I come from a family of gamers who were really into World of Warcraft back in 2006. They got me into it with a free 30 day trial.. so when my trial ended, I was Googling for free versions (which I quickly found out don't exist), when I saw an ad for Second Life. It reminded me of The Sims and since I was a little Sims-obsessed, I downloaded the client and logged in to explore. My goal right away was to dress my avatar the way I do in real life, but I was having a hard time finding my style. Most of the stuff was club-wear. After a few days I found out all the content was user-created (most importantly, the clothing) which led to a new-found obsession and the birth of Sand Shack Surf Co. -- my first SL clothing store!"

How she became an SL fashion designer:

"At first I was only making clothing so I could dress myself. After a few days of wandering sandboxes, I may or may not have fallen into a bad crowd. They told me it was a good idea to sell my clothing directly from my inventory. They gave me a lot of 'free stuff' in neon-colored boxes with hover text -- unfortunately I was too new to recognize the copy-botting. Well, I promptly got caught illegally selling out of my virtual trench coat at a sandbox one day, and was asked to leave. I went to another sandbox where a kind soul advised me to set up shop in an actual store space. They didn't mention I had to pay rent so I found a store space and rezzed my boxes, which were returned to me 30 minutes later.

"After a while, I got tired of setting up shop every day and was contacted by the owner of the building who told me it was rude to rez my vendors in someone else's store. Thus my first lessons in the purpose of auto-return and the need to pay for my own store space. I was racking up newb offenses left and right. I finally rented my own spot (legally), and was taken under the wing of Ashlin Leandros who owned Mixers Boutique (shoe store) and she taught me the ins and outs of running a store in SL. Shortly after, I met Callie Cline who helped me learn how to make clothing and Antonia Marat (own of Artilleri) who became my very close friend and generously offered me a larger store space where Surf Co. sat for about 4 years."

SL mixed reality profile Emma avatar Tiffany RL 3

What inspires the look and style of her avatar:

"I came to SL wanting to dress up like the real me. I never really tried to make my avatar look like myself (other than the clothing) because I see SL as a place to experiment and play. I've tried different body types, different hair colors, different skin colors, different nationalities -- all of it has been so much fun. At times I would try to make my avatar look like me, but it's not really a goal of mine. It's just fun to play that way sometimes."

SL mixed reality profile Emma avatar Tiffany RL

What she says to people who assume SLers are all unattractive in real life, and not, say, like Tiffany too:

"I've met gorgeous people all over SL. Beautiful inside and out. If people are ignorant enough to make a comment like that about people who play Second Life, it's clear they've never spent much time there. I tell them that just like any job or hobby, SL consists of people from all walks of life gathering to do something they enjoy. Who has any right to judge or look down on that? I've met so many talented artists, musicians, athletes, teachers, students, designers, photographers, programmers -- the list goes on. SL is bursting at the seams with talent, so unfortunately for those passing judgement on us, they are the ones missing out."

The clothes styles Emma is wearing:

  • Top - Mon Tissu
  • Skirt - Mon Tissu
  • Tights - Mon Tissu
  • Necklaces - Maxi Gossamer
  • Boots - J's

See more on her SL fashion blog.

The clothes styles Tiffany is wearing:

  • Dress - Altar'd State (by Black Sheep)
  • Tights - Express
  • Necklaces - JewelMint
  • Boots - Frye

See more like this on her RL fashion blog.

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Comments

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jojadhara

Great pictures .. luv virtuality meets reality ..but Emma and Tiffany could have had a necklace by Maxi Gossemar at same time :-) ..would be great if that would be for rest of clothes ;-)

Ziki Questi

Nice feature story, and Mon Tissu makes beautiful things.

Sansarya

I've loved Sand Shack Surf Co. since it first opened, and my avatar still wears some of the first clothes and accessories Emma/Tiffany sold in her first store. We're so lucky to have her in SL, designing and selling great stuff.

Adeon Writer

Nice mixed reality pics! Love these.

Corcosman Voom

"SL is bursting at the seams with talent" .. and a good thing, too. If not for the interesting people we meet, concurrency might be in the single digits.

CronoCloud Creeggan

If someone had shown me the RL picture cold and asked me where to get tights like that, I would have said: "Mon Tissu", and I would send them to G Field or J's for the boots. The RL hair reminds me of Exile or Truth.

I like Mon Tissu's stuff, though some of it is a little young for my avatar's over all style. I just am not overly fond of the "shopping experience" there.

val kendal

the photos that go along with this post are fabulous!

Naomi

Nice blog with nice dresses.

shaz

Some really nice images back up with good info.

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