Freedom in the Pools of Ethuil

The Pools of Ethuil are one of the Realms in this year’s Faire that I come back to again and again. There is a serene and restful vibe there that I crave.

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So many beautiful places to relax in the Pools!

There are so many beautiful places to relax in the Pools! But of course, I can never stay in one place for very long: if I linger, the local demifae start coming round and asking me when Awenia is going to be ready for residents. I’m tired of explaining the whole legal kerfuffle to everybody, particularly tiny fae who get bored after the first sentence and ask questions in the way I imagine toddlers do. “Why?” “Why?” “Why?” And then they never stick around to hear the explanation, little flibbertigibbets!

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Thinking about all that makes my head hurt.

Ach, thinking about all that makes my head hurt. I wonder, though, as I wander round all these beautiful Realms, open to everyone for just these few magical days of the Great Faire, how we’ll put it all together. I mean, we want a town, a magical town, with links to or gates right into a little piece of Faerie. I think with our skills that’ll be possible to create.

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The what-ifs

It’s hard not to get mired down in the what-ifs, particularly when so much of me is the culmination of dozens of odd what-ifs. The need to explain it all has fallen away from me now, after so many years away from the life I thought was my only one. Turns out we can have several different lives in one lifetime. And as I’m going to have a very long lifetime, being prepared for my life to change with no notice has just become not a shocking possibility but a resigned probability.

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The feeling of peace

Still, as I roam the beautiful paths of Pools of Ethuil, it’s hard to let anything break through and bother me, because here is a place so much like the one I want to build for our people back in Awenia.

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Why not dance?

And so, why not dance while the soft skies give us warmth from the distant sun?

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Why not run?

Why not run, with no destination and no desire but the ecstatic wind against our skin?

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Why not leap?

Why not leap, because everything is a leap: life, love, learning, trust, laughter, hope— it’s all a leap. Why not leap without fear?

Why not leap?

Style Card:
Body: Maitreya
Head: Vista Bento Mesh Head, Lia
Skin: Lumae, Elvi, T1/Neutral (Available NOW at the 2018 Relay for Life of Second Life Fantasy Faire, in Pools of Ethuil!)
Ears: Swallow, Noldor Elf Ears
Necklace: RealEvil Industries, Passion Collar
Bracelets: The Plastik, Aeliora Bracelet
Antlers: Static, Andouiller, Vintage Key (Available NOW at the 2018 Relay for Life of Second Life Fantasy Faire, in Sanoria!)
Clothes and Headpiece: Azul, Rafa, Sapphire (Available NOW at the 2018 Relay for Life of Second Life Fantasy Faire, in The Bazaar Dungeon!)
Wings: Evolved Creatures, Fae Wings
Hair: Wasabi, Mayra Windblown (Available NOW at the 2018 Relay for Life of Second Life Fantasy Faire, in Aetherea!)
Shoes: Astralia, Queen’s Leg Jewels

Location: The 2018 Relay for Life of Second Life Fantasy Faire, Realm of Pools of Ethuil, Sponsored by Roawenwood and designed by Searlait Nitschke

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Wrong Turn

Sometimes, Realm-Hopping isn’t as straightforward as I pretend it is for those who can’t do it. You’ll never find two beings who travel between Realms and do it the same way unless one of them taught the other, and even then, the student’s method will evolve into something more personal, which they might teach to someone else, and so on.

Once upon a time I had an amulet given to me by a goddess, who then turned out to be a false goddess, interested only in her own power and gratification. Once I tore myself away from her, I had to kluge together my own methods. It often felt like I was stepping forward into the dark. I know Dyisi would have scolded me if she’d known how many risks I was taking, and rightly so. As I scolded Fenella—or Tacey, or whatever she’s calling herself these days—when she rocked reality and fell naked upon my altar up in the old Faerie bower.

That’s another thing I need to come clean about: I’m going to leave the Wylds. It’s too much. There is too much drama, too many dark machinations. I hope I will still be able to keep my promise to Mornoth, because Mornoth, bless him, is a very good creature who’s been thrust into a very bad situation…. and I’m rambling again.

The other day, I took a wrong turn.

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The other day, I took a wrong turn.

Honestly, I don’t know how it happened. One minute, I was set on travelling to a Realm where there’s a special faire on for people who love the moon, and then I started thinking about my Mother (my bio one) and how she was imprisoned for so long. I know, rookie mistake. But I landed in one of the weirdest little created universes I’ve ever seen.

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This pocket universe was obviously created by someone who loves the moon.

This pocket universe was obviously created by someone who loves the moon. Everything in it, with the exception of the homage to Scottish artist Nathan Coley’s outdoor artwork, is representative of or associated with the moon. I couldn’t resist photographing myself with this copy of the installation, as I never got a chance to see the real one. I wish Nathaniel knew more about modern art: he and I could discuss why the kerning isn’t right on this copy for hours on end, most likely.

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There were even versions of the moon for sitting and sleeping.

There were even depictions of the moon for sitting and sleeping. This one was up a nonsensical spiral staircase that just kind of ends at a window. And why the moon globe is just standing here is anybody’s guess—maybe the creator isn’t finished with his or her refuge.

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For a moment, I let myself wonder why anybody would even create such a thing.

For a moment, I let myself wonder why anybody would even create such a thing. But then, why do I create the things I create? My little empty (so far) town, my book forest, my tower by the water. And what was with this weird wind? It seemed calculated to blow my skirt up at just the wrong angle. Then I giggled and decided the creator of this little hideaway was obviously some kind of a perv with a fantasy on for women in short skirts exposing their knickers or more. Some sort of magical shag shack. Ugh. Then I felt a bit dirty, but really, how different is a place like this to, er, anywhere in Faerie on Beltane?

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But, musings aside, I had some shopping to get to.

But, musings aside, I had some shopping to get to. I’ve got my eye on some new hairstyles for spring, and I’m thinking lavender is exactly the right colour for me this year. Well, for this minute anyway. Who knows what’ll happen when I get to the next Faire?

Faires….Oh, that puts me in mind of the great multi-Realm Fantasy Faire. That’s only a couple of months away! My favourite Faire of the year. Because it’s all for a charity I can care about, I am becoming more involved this year and will be helping with some of the literary events that happen across the Faire. Apparently my background in mortal English literature isn’t as useless as people make it out to be!

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I took one last look back at the Shag Shack….

I took one last look back at the Shag Shack…. and wouldn’t you know it, that fucking wind caught my skirt again. It’s a good thing I was alone: I don’t fancy showing half my arse to just anybody, you know.

Credits:
Body: Maitreya
Head: Catwa, Catya Mesh Bento Head
Hair: Sintiklia, Scarlet (Available NOW at Hairology!)
Eyes: Mesange, Serendipity Eyes (Omega Appliers)
Skin: Lumae, Ella (Available NOW at Enchantment!)
Makeup: Arte, Astrid Eyeshadow and Catya Glossy Lipstick
Ears: Eclipse Art Studio, Elf Dior Ears (Available NOW at Fetish Fair!)
Hands: Vista, Bento Prohands
Nails: Astralia, Moon Shine Nails for Bento Hands (Available NOW at Shiny Shabby!)
Dress: Dead Dollz: Shy Breeze, Purple (Available NOW at Shiny Shabby!)
Shoes: Violetility, Luna Heels

Scene:
Stairs: {anc} No Limits, Stairs to Moonlight
Crescent on Landing: {anc} Moonlight Lounge, Moon Boat
Moon globe on landing: Hideki, Steampunk Moon
Crescent behind stairs: PoseIt, Crescent Moon for Moonbeam Flapper Poses
Suspended Full Moon: BellEquipe, Moon Light
Suspended Crescent Moon: Ariskea, Fae Dreams, Moon of Us, Purple
Huge Full Moon, Medieval Fantasy, Giant Full Moon
Portal: Spell, Portals to other Dimensions
Gate behind stairs: CubeRepublic, Moon Gate
Lamp suspended from Stair Landing: Happy Mood, Globe Lamp M (moon)
Crescent Moon mounted to Stair Landing: Mori, Moonlight Silver
Moon with Blankets below Stairs: Pixel Mode, Lover’s Midsummer Night Moon
Small Standing Crescent Moon: Naminoke, The High Priestess Crescent
Lamp suspended from Sign: Happy Mood, Globe Lamp S (moon)
Full moon suspended from Sign: Keke, The Sky is the Limit, Moon
Moon mounted on branches/antlers: E.V.E, Snow on Branches Winter Bush White
Portal Behind Sign: Jinx, Gweles Stones, Magical
Standing Crescent Moon behind Sign: Air, Lost Moon standing, gold
There Will Be No Miracles Here sign: Fetch, No Miracles Sign

Photographed in Phototools No Light Windlight; all lighting in the scene comes from the LumiPro and created projectors.

Special thanks are due to Brez Lander, who, when I asked what you call a place where a guy brings women for the express purpose of seducing them, came up with “shag shack”. Thanks, Brez!

Spiffy photos taken with the indispensible aid of my LumiPro. I’d never light a model in complete darkness, in a set that took hours to build and which I will completely rip out within 24 hours, without it!

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The Stolen Child

 

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Where dips the rocky highland….

Where dips the rocky highland
Of Sleuthwood in the lake
There lies a leafy island
Where flapping herons wake
The drowsy water rats;
There we’ve hid our fairy vats,
Full of berries
And of reddest stolen cherries.

 

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Come away, O Human child!

Come away, O human child!
To the waters and the wild
With a faery, hand in hand
For the world’s more full of weeping than you can understand.

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Where the wave of moonlight glosses

Where the wave of moonlight glosses
The dim grey sands with light,
Far off by furthest Rosses
We foot it all the night,
Weaving olden dances
Mingling hands and mingling glances
Till the moon has taken flight;

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To and fro we leap

To and fro we leap
And chase the frothy bubbles,
While the world is full of troubles
And anxious in its sleep.

Come away, O human child!

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To the waters and the wild

To the waters and the wild
With a faery, hand in hand,
For the world’s more full of weeping than you can understand.

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Where the wandering water gushes

Where the wandering water gushes
From the hills above Glen-Car,
In pools among the rushes
That scarce could bathe a star,
We seek for slumbering trout
And whispering in their ears
Give them unquiet dreams;
Leaning softly out
From ferns that drop their tears
Over the young streams.

Come away, O human child!
To the waters and the wild

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With a faery, hand in hand,

With a faery, hand in hand,
For the world’s more full of weeping than you can understand.

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Away with us he’s going, The solemn-eyed:

Away with us he’s going,
The solemn-eyed:
He’ll hear no more the lowing
Of the calves on the warm hillside
Or the kettle on the hob
Sing peace into his breath
Or see the brown mice bob
Round and round the oatmeal chest.

For he comes, the human child,
To the waters and the wild
With a faery, hand in hand,

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For the world’s more full of weeping than he can understand.

For the world’s more full of weeping than he can understand.

Poem, of course, is “The Stolen Child” by the immortal WB Yeats, a native of Sligo, where my late husband’s family were from and where many of them still reside.

All thanks go to Noah, who agreed on fairly short notice to find some schoolboy clothes and come be my Stolen Child for an evening. Noah’s player is among my favourite people in SL, and their portrayal of children as real kids taught me not to be completely dismissive of child avatars when I was new to SL roleplaying several years ago and we ended up on a sim together. Noah is an amazing kid, and is that not the most adorable child you have ever seen? Here, he is seven years old, and I thought he brought me the perfect Stolen Child.

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The amazing and adorable Noah!

When Astralia came up with the stunning Ivy Elf Set for The Gacha Garden, I knew I had to do something special with it. Once I dressed Gwyneth in the outfit, I could only think of the wild faeries of Irish folklore, and of course Yeats’ poem came to mind as something accessible, and short, that I could use as a springboard. With very little preparation, I decided to use the beautiful forest Dyisi Oppewall created on my sim, Awenia, as a setting. Raindale‘s beautiful boat, Meriel, provided the simple stage we used to take these photographs. I am grateful to Lumiya Rae, who created this lovely skin, Aurora, which is coming soon to The Coven: it got me to streamline my Lelutka Simone Bento head-shape to give Gwyneth this stern and otherworldly face. ColeMarie Soleil, the creative force behind Cole’s Creations, created the glimmering bits of gold that are sometimes visible around Gwyneth’s body and head and also the beautiful moonbeams that illuminate her Faery form as she appears to Noah. This photoshoot took nearly three hours, possibly a bit longer, and I could not have done it as well or efficiently without my experience in the Visionaire class or our masterclass with Senna Coronet on lighting. Nearly all the moonbeams on the water are made with projectors I created, and the projector on Noah dimmed out the lamp on the boat, so I had to create projectors to simulate that, as well. This was shot in various Phototools Moonlight wind lights, with the exception of the last photograph, which I shot in Phototools No Light so that I could bring all focus to Noah’s adorable and pinchable little face! (Noah is going to barf when he reads this!)

Style Cards:
Gwyneth:
Body: Maitreya
Head: Lelutka, Simone Mesh Head
Hair: Mina, Ava Lin (Available NOW at Fameshed!)
Eyes: Mesange, Serendipity Eyes (Omega eye appliers)
Skin: Lumae, Aurora, Hexed (COMING SOON to The Coven!)
Ears: Swallow, Elf Ears HD
Hands: Vista, Bento Prohands
Clothes (bra, headdress, body leaves, neck leaves, necklace, leaf tattoo, leggings, armbands, corset, and necklace): Astralia, Ivy Elf Set (Available NOW at The Gacha Garden!)
Wings: Zyn, Woodland Tree Wings
Moonbeams and Gold Sparkles: Cole’s Corner, Fairy Gold Dust and Illuminated Lightbeams (Moonbeam Aura)

Noah:
Hair: *ARGRACE* GAKU
Socks: EB Atelier – Mesh_Socks Grey
Necklace: MeshMerized – Pan
Sweater: Loki Mesh – V4 Timerascal – Top
Shorts: Loki Mesh – V4 Timerascal Shorts
Boots: Loki Mesh – V4 Workboots – Brown
Mesh Body: #SMB Mesh Body 2.2
Skin: [Lee] Yang Skin Child Version
Eyes: [Icy Winter EYE] by Lubellia

Spiffy photos taken with the indispensible aid of my LumiPro. I’d never re-enact a Yeats poem in SL without it!

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We <3 Roleplay In November

Gwyneth:

Gwyneth:

So, here’s an unusual straight-up fashion blog from me.

I’m trying to get back into the swing of blogging, so I thought I’d take a look around this month’s We Love Roleplay to see if I felt inspired.

This round is low on fabulous dresses, but I did find a couple. I wanted to showcase a few more of the home and garden items, but perhaps I’ll get a chance to do that in a post later this month.

Will you look at these ears!

Will you look at these ears!

The one thing I was absolutely itching to get my hands on from the preview were these new ears from BentBox. They are flexible, animated, come with a load of jewellery and colour options (and are fully tintable if the colour match isn’t right), and they fit very naturally with Gwyneth’s style. In addition to the ears being animated, they offer several idle styles, so you can change your ears to suit your mood, or just keep them in the perfect place for your avatar. One thing I do wish they had is a way to halt animations altogether, but you can’t have everything, and they’re absolutely gorgeous just as they are. I’ll talk more about this dress in a minute, but note that these are my New Favourite Ears and Gwyneth will probably be in them from now ’til I find a new Favourite.

EMO-tions corset and hair

EMO-tions corset and hair

Now, anybody who knows me knows that my hair heart belongs to Analog Dog. But I’m polyhairamorous. 🙂 And the fact is, nobody who’s making mesh hair has as beautiful a silver as Emo-tions. The style is called Jolene, and the headband is attached to the hair, so it fits perfectly. The Sylvana corset is also from Emo-tions, with great wood texturing and ivy vines for shoulder straps that have bee cleverly designed so they don’t quite meet, meaning that if shoulder straps don’t always fit you, you don’t have anything to worry about. The skin Gwynth is wearing is from Pumens, called Fairy Skin; this is the Light version. Now, since I got my Catwa mesh head (Jessica), I have gone mad for anything that’s offering Catwa or Omega head appliers, so I’ve been demoing and buying them like crazy. The skin has a nice, satiny texture, and I love that the designer didn’t puff up the lips and give poor Gwyneth a duck face.

Another view of the Emo-tions hair and corset and the Pumens skin.

Another view of the Emo-tions hair and corset and the Pumens skin.

In this photo you can get a better idea of the skin definition. Eyes are from Ikon, and the tattoos are the ones Gwyneth has been wearing since the most recent Secret Affair event, the Aigneis & Airell tattoos from Things. Bonus: Pumens includes all the major appliers in simple-to-use HUDs, one for the head and another for the body, so it is super easy to apply. The field of flowers, by the way, is the amazing Ichi Fields from The Looking Glass, which I fell in love with at the 2015 Fantasy Faire; it’s been a staple in every iteration of Gwyneth’s Seelie Bower since it became available at the Faire. The stone circle is from Gor Con and again has been a staple of every build; it was an ultra-rare at the Age of Vikings event from yonks ago. Background trees are the Enchanted Wood from Studio Skye.

Ah, Gwyneth, such a faerie fae in this dress from Moon Amore!

Ah, Gwyneth, such a faerie fae in this dress from Moon Amore!

Here is another stand-out from this month’s We Love Roleplay, the Baroque dress from Moon Amore. With each dress pack you get two colours; I chose the blue and white pack, because blue and gold are Gwyneth’s court colours. The stunning wings were an ultra-rare from the Gacha Garden, the Astralia Warrior Fairy Wings. These wings are so beautifully textured, and there are four texturing options to choose from for the wing membrane and two for the veins. Really lovely work. Gwyneth is still wearing those BentBox wings, and because of their length and the anims on them, you can see them even under fluffy hair, like the stunning Gwen hair from Analog Dog. Yes, yes, I know, but it’s still my favourite hair in all the world, for obvious reasons. I still love everything about this hair, and it’s become the basic hair I put Gwyneth in for just about everything except photoshoots where I’m talking about other hair.

A little closer in, and you can see more detail!

A little closer in, and you can see more detail!

The circlet is one of the beautiful rares from an old Deviance gacha at one of the first Fantasy Gacha Carnivals I ever attended; this is the Erulisse Maiden Circlet. The necklace is from Empyrean Forge: it’s The Dreamer, Barn, Serenity. Again, it’s an all-time favourite and I photograph Gwyneth in it a lot. The skin is Lumae Niska PetalsLumiya Rae is one of my favourite skin designers, and an all-around nice person. And if you didn’t know if already, she’s getting ready to make a fresh start on her skin lines, so everything in her main store is being retired and it’s all 50% off. She also has fantastic group gifts if you want to join her in-world group, and she’s one of the most accessible designers I’ve ever spoken with.

Here's Gwyneth in the Shadow Temptress gown from The White Armory.

Here’s Gwyneth in the Shadow Temptress gown from The White Armory.

This White Armory gown, The Shadow Temptress, definitely tempted me! (I apologise for the bad word humour.) The colour way again I chose to represent Gwyneth’s court colours, blue and gold, because I think of this very much as a court gown. My favourite part of it is the fur detailing at the bottom of the skirt. The arch in the foreground of this studio photo is from Solarium; it’s the Medhir Woods Archway, created by Rynn Verwood for her beautiful sim at the 2015 Fantasy Faire. 

A little closer....

A little closer….

Here, you can see the bodice detailing a little better.

Will you look at these ears!

I should dock myself ten points for using the same photo twice in one blog entry, but you have to get close to see the jewellery from Cae. 

There are a couple of reasons I chose to put this photo in twice. First of all, take a look at the beautiful jewellery Gwyneth is wearing. This is from Cae, called Isabelle; the necklace and tiara are from the same set. It’s not new; it’s a staple of Gwyneth’s wardrobe. The tiara works beautifully with one of my favourite Analog Dog updos, Molly. I got this at the 2015 Hair Fair, but it’s now available at the Analog Dog Main Store. The face jewellery is from Spyralle, called the Forest Edge Mask, and it comes with quite a lot of texturing options. I picked up the mask at an event that I don’t think is happening any more, Illusion Point, but it’s now available in the Spyralle Main Store. Now, remember I said I was really loving playing with Catwa head appliers? This is yet another one, this time Morgana from Pink Fuel. Pink Fuel has been one of my favourite skin designers for years; I lived in Harley for most of Gwyneth’s life as a Princess in the Ashmourne Seelie Sithen. The lips on this skin are so beautiful, not over-puffy, and wide enough so that Gwyneth’s mouth looks realistic; Pink Fuel also does an amazing job with makeups, and there are several choices on the Morgana applier, which comes with a version for both the Jessica and the Annie mesh heads from Catwa. These appliers weren’t at We Love Roleplay; they’re available at the Pink Fuel Main Store. The stunning eyes are from Ikon, natch; they are Triumph Eyes in colour Electric.

Now for some more fun and relaxed shots: Gwyneth with lots of animals, on the Leaf Chair from Ginger Line.

Now for some more fun and relaxed shots: Gwyneth with lots of animals, on the Leaf Chair from Ginger Line.

The Leaf Chairs from Ginger Line come in two different colours; this is Version 2. Version 1 has a green cushion and accents. Gwyneth is wearing the Beatrix gown from Les Encantades, available at We Love Roleplay. I love the sleeve accents on this gown, and Les Encantades has such a deft hand with texturing. So many animals! The Greyhound is from last month’s Chapter 4; he is from meadowWorks. The Winged Cat is from Half Deer, a gacha from a past Kustom9. The Curious Cat was a gacha from Fashionably Dead, and I found him at a past Arcade Gacha event. The Corgi and the Dragon were supplied by Dyisi Oppewall, who helped me set up this shot, and I forgot to ask her where she got them, but I’ll add them in later. The banner hanging behind Gwyneth is custom heraldry created by Nathaniel Ballard, Gwyneth’s IC Consort and one of the wonderful Wicked Wylds storytellers.

Come a little closer!

Come a little closer!

Here, you can see a little more of the dress detailing, and also the lovely Amelie Deux necklace from Zibska (at We Love Roleplay). The headpiece is from a past We Love Roleplay, it’s from Distorted Dreams and is called Aila. This is the Rose Gold version. The hair is Oak Leaf Hair‘s lovely Khaleesi, and I got it on Marketplace.

The minute I saw this gorgeous Mainstay Fireplace from Tia, I knew it belonged in Gwyneth's house.

The minute I saw the gorgeous Mainstay Fireplace from Tia, I knew it belonged in Gwyneth’s house.

The Mainstay Fireplace has spaces for your own photographs, and I love how it looks in Gwyneth’s house.

This is yet another Catwa applier, this time from Izzy's.

This is yet another Catwa applier, this time from Izzie’s.

You can also see some of the beautiful ear jewellery a little better in this photograph. Izzy’s Taleah applier, in tone Frost, is a lovely, fresh face with a lot of depth and great shading. Izzy Button also provides terrific customer service: when I purchased the appliers for the Maitreya body and my SLink hands and feet, there wasn’t an applier for the Frost shade, so I sent Izzy a notecard about it, and she came back to me with an explanation that the SLink appliers for that shad hadn’t been added to the hands and feet applier and were only on the SLink whole body appliers, and she kindly sent me the applier so I wouldn’t have to go back to her store and make a duplicate purchase.

So, partly because of the inspiration chain from knowing wonderful people who create beautiful things, and partly because I miss the side of me that loves to take photos and share beautiful things with the world, I’m going to try and be a little more of an active blogger now.

Later, this week, expect some posts about great stuff available at the Fair Play and Hidden Sanctuary events, plus some lovely skins from 7 Deadly s{K]ins. And I have an amazing bunch of stuff from the community at We Love To Blog, as well. So many things to show you, so little time.

Thanks to everyone who spends even a little time reading my little blog. I hope you’ve enjoyed my yammering on. I’ll make the next one a story, I promise.

No style cards today: everything’s credited in the text.

Spiffy photos taken with the indispensible aid of my LumiPro. I never leave home without it!