Thinking of a Place

Sometimes, thought is everything.

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Light = Dark

I’m moving through the dark
Of a long black night
Just moving with the moon
And the light it shines
And I’m thinking of a place
And it feels so very real
Just moving through the dark

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Once I had a dream

I’m moving through the dark
Of a long black night
And I’m looking at the moon
And the light it shines
But I’m thinking of a place
And it feels so very real
Oh, it was so full of love!

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See it through my eyes

Lead me through the light
Pull me from the water
Hold my hand and something turns to me
Turns me into you
Just see it through my eyes
Love me like no other
Hold my hand and something turns to me
Turns me into you
Turn in me
Into you

Lyrics excerpted from The War on Drugs, “Thinking of a Place”. (YouTube link follows credits)

The dress and necklace in this post are both items featured at The Spoonful of Sugar Festival,a charity event benefiting Doctors Without Borders. Doctors Without Borders provides medical aid to vulnerable people and in crisis situations. There’s a lot to see over the six regions of the Festival, but you have until the 30th of September to see everything. So pace yourself, and don’t forget to bring enough L$, because there are many places along the way to give your support to Doctors Without Borders, including five shopping regions.

Spoonful of Sugar Featured Items:
Necklace: DCKM, Sugar Spoon Necklace
Dress: Mishmash Fusion, Starry Night Beach Dress

Full Credits:
Body: Maitreya
Head: Lelutka, Cate Bento Mesh Head
Skin: 7 Deadly s{K}ins, Friday (Available NOW at The Chapter Four!)
Eyeshadow and Lip colour: Izzie’s, Glitter Makeup
Eyes: Song, Frost Eyes
Hair: Stealthic, Fleeting (Available NOW at Kustom9!)
Headpiece, Lode, Marigold Wreath, Dark Berries
Nails: Cazimi, August VIP Nails
Photo Box: FoxCity, Cloud 9 (Available NOW at Kustom9!)

 

Don’t Go Into the Basement!

I vaguely remember this phrase as something we used to yell as primary school kids when we were watching one of those ridiculous horror movies where the characters do all the stupid things, like split up, follow the scary sound, and of course, go into the basement.

If only I had thought of that bit of wisdom before I got it into my head that I should explore the Castle’s basement yesterday.

Of course, it’s my castle, but I haven’t bothered to enter every single room: that would take me a month! I’m much too busy with realm building right now, anyway, but yesterday I had a few quiet hours, and so I went down into the basement, marvelled at the glorious kitchen that Bran has put together, and began checking what all was in the various basement rooms. One was empty—maybe I can convince Nathaniel to us that one as a workshop so I don’t have to build him a man-cave as an outbuilding. Another was clearly a pantry, stocked floor to ceiling with stuff that is apparently very important for the smooth running of a castle.

But it was the third room I entered that gave me a bit of a turn.

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I entered some kind of a workshop.

It was some kind of a workshop. Only the weird kind, not the kind Nathaniel would have. It was full of things that resembled robotic body parts.

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Wing models?

If I had to guess, I’d say these were models of some kind of steampunk-y wingcraft. But I didn’t have to guess, and besides, that wasn’t the weirdest thing in the room.

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The walls were covered with weird prints.

The walls were covered with weird prints, some disturbingly of human anatomy. But it was the shelf full of various body parts made of metal that really got me. Arms, legs, even a face. Where was I?

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Where am I? Come on, steampunk brain girl, answer me!

“Where am I? Come on, steampunk brain girl, answer me!” Not that I usually talk to wall paintings, mind. The room was just creepy enough that I thought she might answer. But, no luck.

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I moved on to the desk, which was easily as creepy as the shelf.

I moved on to the desk, which was easily as creepy as the shelf. Well, if you didn’t count the body parts, that is.

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Stuff was left here as if someone had been interrupted while working.

Stuff was left here as if someone had been interrupted while working, including a glowing hand made of metal. Did I even want to know? I certainly didn’t go delving into the little mini-file that was on the desk. I had no desire to know what someone who had a shelf of metal body parts might consider “odds” and “ends”.

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This mechanical heart was pretty despite its creepiness.

There was one thing that was pretty despite its creepiness. On the back of the desk was some kind of mechanical heart. And although I couldn’t see any way for it to be turned on or off, the gears were all moving. It also had an eerie blue glow about it. I wondered how it was made, and indeed, why anybody would make such a thing.

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Extra gears?

At least one of my questions was partially answered: there was a sheet of parchment upon which had been placed a variety of metal gears. I guessed that at least some of these would find their way into other hearts at some point? I glanced back at steampunk brain girl. Maybe they would find their way into some metal steampunk robot person’s brain? I shuddered.

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Finally something that didn’t creep me out!

Well, hello! As I turned from the desk, suppressing a shudder at the anatomical charts on the wall—one of them was just a bunch of surgical instruments. I mean, really? Who wants that on their wall?—I saw something I’d only ever seen before in pictures. An original Macintosh computer, complete with cheery hello screen. An ancient Mac, still running. At least whoever put together this macabre little workshop had some good taste inside them. It was rather odd, I thought, that there was absolutely nothing else on the computer desk. Almost like whoever hangs out here really didn’t spend much time at the computer. Then again, we’re talking about a machine with 128K of RAM that shipped with only a 3.5″ floppy drive for storage. Can you imagine?

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I thought, briefly, about just taking it.

I thought, briefly, about just taking it. After all, it is my castle, and whoever put all this stuff in here obviously did not go through Bran or me for permission. Perhaps Nathaniel authorised this? Of course, anybody who collects and presumably tinkers with stuff like mechanical hearts and glowing metal hands might not be kindly disposed to someone liberating their stuff, even if someone is the Queen.

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Well bloody shaken

I was well bloody shaken by the whole experience, even though I doubt I was in that room for more than five minutes. And I didn’t look back when I left: I’ll have nightmares for a week about that disembodied metal hand.

Style Card:
Body: Maitreya
Head: Vista, Lia Bento Mesh Head
Skin: 7 Deadly s{K}ins, Bloom (Bloom is this month’s group gift at 7 Deadly s{K}ins! You can pick it up at the 7 Deadly s{K}ins Main Store!)
Nails: Cazimi, Depths of Winter
Ears: Swallow, Noldor Elf Ears
Eyes: Song, Luna Eyes (Available NOW at Kustom9!)
Clothes: Sorumin, Modern Princess Gacha (Available NOW at Enchantment!)
Shoes: Reign, Ballet Flats, Thigh High
Hair: Stealthic, Haven (Available NOW at Collabor88!)
Circlet: Coquette, Fairy Crown
Necklace and Armlets: RealEvil Industries, Anabella Set (Available NOW at Fameshed!)

Location: The Castle, Awenia
Building: Rivendale, Dreamy Castle (Available at the Rivendale Main Store!)
Everything in the workshop that is not a print, a chalkboard, or a Macintosh: Rivendale, Tinkertopia Gacha (Available NOW at the Fantasy Gacha Carnival!) See below for specifics of the gacha pieces.
Lonely Little Macintosh: Insurrektion, Back to the 80s Gacha

Tinkertopia SL

 

 

More Glamour!

Bhánel wants more photographs! It turns out that Glamour, by Bhánel, will be marketed to different groups of people in different ways. The first campaign, which I showed you here, is targeted toward “sophisticated young professionals who want to project a classy, classic image.” The second campaign is targeted toward “younger, more adventurous women.” The idea is that Glamour can turn you into anybody. Here’s a still from the first shoot we did around the second campaign!

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Glamour—Get Your Halo Dirty

I love the whole concept of this photo. The deep red and pink tones give the distinct impression of something not quite “wholesome”, to use a human term, and juxtaposed against the neon halo and wings, the statement is about as risqué as I’m going to get in a photograph. This silver dress, by The Annex, is new for The Trunk Show wedding faire, which I think has already opened its doors to the public.

Style Card:
Body: Maitreya
Head: LAQ, Poppy Bento Mesh Head
Skin: 7 Deadly s{K}ins, Berlin (Available NOW at The Secret Affair!)
Nails: Cazimi, Depths of Winter (Available at the Cazimi Main Store!)
Lipstick: Cazimi, Tinted Lipgloss (Naturals) (Available at the Cazimi Main Store!)
Ears: Eclipse Art Studio, Ears Elf Dior
Eyes: Song, Luna Eyes (Available NOW at Kustom9!)
Gown: The Annex, Imogen Gown (Available NOW at The Trunk Show!)
Shoes: Rebel Hope, Tia Mesh Stiletto (Available at the Rebel Hope Main Store!)
Hair: Truth, Yuko (Yuko is the most recent VIP gift for the Truth VIP Group. You can pick it up at the Truth Main StoreIt only costs L$350 to join this group, and the rewards are worth far more than that! Why aren’t you a member yet?)
Necklace: The Plastic, Hallows (You can get this at The Plastik Main Store!)

Environment: FoxCity, Photo Booth, Halo Limited (Available NOW at Limit8!)
Poses: from Nina Rosario, Pose Set 70

The Appearance of Fitness

I don’t work out. Yes, I really do get up like this, and even if I didn’t, fae glamour provides me with the means to look any way I like. That said, I do like to dance, and sometimes muscle memory is nice. So when I discovered a faery-run dance studio in Nu Jyorck, I booked a couple of lessons to see how things would work out. Bran came along to photograph me. I swear, he’s like my personal paparazzo.

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I made a photo face.

So of course I made a photo face. Bran accused me of looking at too much Instagram. OK, maybe I have been overindulging a bit, but the faces humans pull when you try to take their photographs really amuse me!

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Steps

My tutor was of course a hot Sidhe guy of Scandinavian descent: in Nu Jyorck I wouldn’t have it any other way. We ran through some basic dance moves before working on some expression and flexibility.

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Expression

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Flexibility

Finally, we went into a cool down, though I argued that I really didn’t need it.

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Cool down

Best thing about this whole experience?

Dinner and dancing with hot Scandinavian Sidhe after class!

Style Card:
Body: Maitreya
Feet: SLink, Pointe Feet
Head: Vista, Lia Bento Mesh Head
Skin: 7 Deadly s{K}ins, Scarlet (Available on August 28 at Designer Showcase!)
Nails: Cazimi, Blustery
Ears: Swallow, Elf Ears, High Definition
Eyes: Song, Luna Eyes (Available NOW at Kustom9!)
Top: The Nerdy Birdy, Bralet (Available NOW at LoveFest!)
Leggings: The Annex, Billie Leggings (A NEW RELASE at The Annex Main Store!)
Hair: Analog Dog (Natch) (Available NOW at The Gacha Garden! —this hair fat pack is a free gift if you join the Gimme Gacha group [free to join])
Shoes: Hopes Creations, Arren Tootsie Bows

Environment: FoxCity, Photo Booth, Dance Hall
Poses: FoxCity, Body Language, except for
Lotus Pose: SLC, Heat Sand

 

Dressing Room

I love my castle. Designed by Riven (of Rivendale), it’s a joy to live in. I was never so happy to see a building appear in the Realm than when I saw that castle out the window of the (almost) equally beautiful Treehouse. I think in time we shall use the Treehouse for community events as it’s more suited to a Fae tourist destination than the castle. With Enchantment in the air, I of course had many new gowns to wear, and I’m stocking up for autumn. Faith tells me autumn is just around the corner; really it is, and even though it almost always appears to be summertime in Faerie, we do have temperature fluctuations.

The one drawback to the castle is that it’s so big I get lost in it sometimes! And the fact is, it’s not completely decorated yet, even though it’s been in the Realm for coming up on nine months now. Imagine my delight when Bran told me as we made our way home from the Enchantment faire that he’d given instructions to some of the staff to decorate the parlour just below our bedroom tower as a dressing room for me!

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My Dressing Room

My dressing room is full of mirrors and comfortable seating, in case I ever end up with a large enough Court that there are ladies who wish to come and assist me in getting dressed. Bran made sure I knew he’d gotten the seating from The Looking Glass, so of course it was pre-approved before I even entered the room itself. One wall is covered with a large wardrobe, and another holds a generous vanity. As you can see, the windows have bookshelf seating, from Noble Creations, which means the room has a bit of multipurpose built in. I can imagine reading on a rainy day (yes, we do have those!) while a lovely mortal musician gives us all some soothing background music. Just the thought of that makes me smile. Mirrors from Refuge and anc adorn the walls, and there’s even a copy of the beautiful clock from Erstwhile Station. The only thing I’ll add after the fact is possibly a rug, although the floor designs are so beautiful in this part of the castle.

Now, those of you who follow this blog (all two of you!) probably know who my go-to dress designers are. You’ll recognise the delicate, detailed, and altogether competent hand of Junbug on this gown I’m wearing. I picked up the Storm Violet gown at the Enchantment faire, and I must admit I got it in more than one colour, so I’m sure you’ll see it again, because September is just around the corner.

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Exquisite sleeve detailing

The detailing on these sleeves is exquisite, isn’t it? I also love the necklace, which is a quick-stop find from Swallow. Those marvellous ladies at Little Bones did my hair, and I’ve never been so happy to have extensions braided and waved; it’s given my hair such a loft and lustrous texture.

I loved the dressing room so much I made Bran bring all the folks who’d had a hand in decorating it straight to me, and I gave them all a kiss! Nothing like seeing a Sidhe blush. So cute!

I confess I was so tired of Bran taking photographs of me on this day that I just threw my hands up and told him I’d have no more photography of the dressing room, thank you very much; I wanted to curl up with a book in my new safe haven. I think he was a tad miffed. But since I’ll be spending an awful lot of time in this room, I’m sure there will be plenty of opportunities for photographs in the months and years to come.

Style Card:
Body: Maitreya
Head: Vista, Lia Bento Mesh Head
Skin: 7 Deadly s{K}ins, Brooklyn (Available on August 28 at Blush!)
Ears: Swallow, Noldor Elf Ears
Eyes: Song, Luna Eyes (Available NOW at Kustom9!)
Gown: Junbug, Storm Violet Gown (Available NOW at Enchantment!)
Hair: Little Bones, Poison (Available NOW at Collabor88!)
Necklace: Swallow, Magic Necklaces (Available NOW at Kustom9!)
Crown: Dreaming Thicket, Ladies Crown, Countess (Available NOW at The Fantasy Gacha Carnival!)

Location: Awenia, The Castle
Castle: Rivendale, Dreamy Castle (Available in the Rivendale Main Store!)
Chairs: The Looking Glass, The Encounter Chairs (You can pick these up at The Looking Glass main store!)
Mirrors: Refuge, Fairy Tale Mirror Silver; and
{anc}, Looking Glass Magic, Heaven
Bookcase Window Seats: Noble Creations, Fantasy Sofa Relax (Available at the Noble Creations Main Store!)
The Looking Glass: Will-O-Wisp Tree (You can pick this up at The Looking Glass main store!)

 

 

A Little Prophecy

Not a full day after I had that weird dream about the talking frog, Bran informed me that we’d received an invitation to the latest theme event for one of my favourite off-Realm faires, Enchantment. And you’ll never guess what the theme is! OK, probably you already guessed, given the title and lead-in here. It’s The Frog Prince. Now, obviously there was going to be lots of fun stuff at this event, so I grabbed Bran, and off we went.

Whoosh! Of course everything there was beautiful. And I might have almost blown the Royal Budget, but when you’re the Queen everything works out for you in the end, so I didn’t worry too much. Weirdly, one of the things I found was a beautiful gown from Silvan Moon Designs. Well, there’s nothing weird about finding a beautiful gown from there…. but it was weird that it exactly matched the dress I’d dreamed about just the night before. Sometimes, my mind astounds even me.

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Into the Ruins I skipped!

I also found this stunning dress from Noble Creations, and a nice new crown from Bauhaus Movement that’ll be lovely for autumn, assuming it ever gets here. Helpers were on hand from two of my favourite hairstylists, Analog Dog and No Match. Also weirdly, the new style from Analog Dog was exactly like the one in my dream. Of course I made a deal to have Queue (we’re totally on a first name basis now!) come round to the castle and plait my hair for me sometime in the near future, but once I got the extensions from No Match in, I knew I’d have them in at least for a week. Unless I get bored…. you know how it is.

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The Ruins

As Awenia reshapes itself around me, little nooks and crannies are always springing up. This one is built around what appear to be the ruins of an old church, or maybe a monastery. That’s odd in and of itself, since you don’t find many Christian-style churches in Fae lands, but you never know about the history of a place. I also know that many of the demifae like to reclaim lands like this for their own purposes, so maybe that’s what happened here. I loved the little benches; their maker’s mark says they come from Raindale, which doesn’t surprise me at all: I’ll have to find out who sourced those. I recognised two trees as obviously being from Sharni Azalee’s beautiful nursery in The Looking Glass realm: one of them looks just perfect for stealing kisses with Nathaniel when I bring him here later to show him the Ruins. I think he’ll like this part of the Realm. That’s if I can get his attention away from his ongoing Words With Friends games. I swear, for someone to whom technology is completely new, he’s caught on very quickly. Of course, he still describes it as “the library in my trousers,” so maybe we do have a little way to go there.

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Bran made me pose like this.

Bran made me pose like this, because he loves the extensions. Here, they are still new so the ends look shiny and perfect. He’s another one who’s embraced technology wholeheartedly. I still can’t get Clutie to log in to the castle computer system, but she says that’s because they don’t make hardware in her size. I just don’t argue with her about it.

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Royal Dress, by Noble Creations

Then, he wanted to get another shot of me in the beautiful Royal Dress by Noble Creations. He still wasn’t happy that all the sleeve detail wasn’t showing, so he had to take like five more photographs. If Bran had been raised in a more modern Realm, he’d be a fashion photographer, for sure. He really has an eye for it.

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A little closer.

“Now, let me get a little closer to you, Your Majesty,” Bran said. “I want to make sure we have a nice shot of that beautiful crown.”

“Did you know,” I said, trying not to be too self-conscious, “that Bauhaus Movement included this necklace as a gift with the crown? I have no idea how they afford to do that.”

“I guess the best designers just know their markets enough,” he replied, though I could tell he wasn’t really thinking about it too hard.

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I really did wonder, though.

I really did wonder, though.

Bran cut into my thoughts. “Oh, yes!” he said. “Look at those slashed shoulders!”

I swear, any minute now I was expecting him to tell me to Work It, Baby! or something.

“Just get a nice photo of my face, and let’s stop?” I asked. “It’s hot, and this dress is getting prickly. It’ll be great in October, though.”

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Portrait

Bran obliged.

“I want to remember this skin paint from 7 Deadly s{K}ins,” I said. “It’s called Focus. I could use a little more of that in my life.”

And would you believe he laughed? He caught himself when I mock-glared at him. “Well, far be it from me to contradict you, Your Highness.”

“I’m finding a frog and putting it in your bed!” I said.

He shuddered. “We’d better get home, then,” he said, “so I can make you forget about all that with an exquisite lunch. Fresh salmon today, with couscous and vegetables from Clutie’s garden.”

“Mm, Clutie does have a way with aubergines,” I said. “Which reminds me to get you a recipe for baba ghanoush.”

Off we went home. I should really spend more time at home: I haven’t explored the entire castle yet, and you know there are always surprises to be found here.

Style Card:
Body: Maitreya
Head: Catwa, Lona Bento Mesh Head
Skin: 7 Deadly s{K}ins, Focus (Available until AUGUST 18 at Designer Circle!)
Nails: Cazimi, Influence Nails (Available NOW at the Designer Showcase!)
Ears: Lumae, Leevi Long Ears
Eyes: Song, Luna Eyes (Available NOW at Kustom9!)
Gown: Noble Creations, Royal Gown (Available NOW at Enchantment!)
Shoes: Eudora, 3D Arianne Pumps (Available NOW at Enchantment!)
Hair: No Match, No Spell (Available NOW at Enchantment!)
Necklace and Crown: Bauhaus Movement, Frog Prince (Available NOW at Enchantment!)
Eyelashes: Besom, Sassy Lash (Available NOW at Kustom9!)

Location: Awenia, The Ruins
Structure: Delirium + Lunacy, Ancient Temple
Benches: Raindale, Heathergate Bench
Ground Cover: Keke, Dotty Grass
Big Trees: The Looking Glass, The Kissing Tree (Available NOW at Enchantment!); and
The Looking Glass: Will-O-Wisp Tree (You can pick this up at The Looking Glass main store!)

We Are All The Story

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Alone in the woods…

Alone in the woods, I am looking for something. I don’t know what I am looking for, but that’s not unusual.

I hear a noise, not far away, and I turn to see

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Another version of me, telling stories to animals.

Another version of me, telling stories to animals. Her/my voice rises and falls, and they are rapt. Dragons flutter round the edges, bunnies cavort; even the squirrels have her/my attention.

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So why am I here?

So why am I here, when I am also there? And what does she have that I don’t have? The forest grows dark around me, and I fear I will be lost.

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“The forest grew darker around her, and she feared she would be lost,”

“The forest grew darker around her, and she feared she would be lost,” says the storyteller/me. And suddenly I realise, not what she has the I haven’t, but what I have that she hasn’t.

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She is telling a story about me.

She is telling a story about me. I am the writer and I am also the protagonist. I am the captive and the captivator. I am the creatrix and the created.

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“We are all the story,” she says.

“We are all the story,” she says. “We are all the beginning and the end of drama, quest, beginnings, middles, and ends. We are all of it.

I am all of it.

You are all of it.

Build your story. Star in it. Create yourself as you create something else. What more magic can there be?

Style Cards:
Gwyneth in the woods
Body: Maitreya
Head: LAQ Bento Mesh Head, Gaia
Skin: 7 Deadly s{K}ins, Carter (Available NOW at Skin Fair!)
Ears: Lumae, Leevi Long Ears
Eyebrows: Alaskametro, “Glimmer” Eyebrows
Eyes: Song, Nagi Eyes
Gown: The Annex, Antonia Gown, Warm (Available NOW at  We Love Roleplay!)
Hair and Garland: Tableau Vivant, Silvana (Available NOW at Collabor88!)
Photo Background: Serenity Style, ChoiBoi Mystic Forest Backdrop

Gwyneth with the animals
Body: Maitreya
Head: LAQ Bento Mesh Head, Neve
Skin: 7 Deadly s{K}ins, Carter (Available NOW at Skin Fair!)
Ears: Lumae, Leevi Long Ears
Eyebrows: SCS Fresh Eyebrows, Blonde
Eyes: Song, Nagi Eyes
Gown: Silvan Moon Designs, Lady Ariana Gown, Blue (Available NOW at  We Love Roleplay!)
Hair: Mina, Carmen
Wings: Muse, Miss TWA 2015 Wings
Necklace and Earrings: Empyrean Forge, Springleaf Necklace and Earrings
Crown: Bauhaus Movement, Rapunzel Crown
Photo Background: Kraftwork, The Book of Dreams
Animals:
Bunnies: anc, Cotton Bunny Cappuccino
Puppy Dogs: anc, Flottante Puppy Cream
Raccoon: Jian, Raccoon Static
Winged Cat: Half Deer, Winged Cat, Contemplate
Black and White Cat: Fashionably Dead, Cat 11- Sitting
Sitting Dragon, Alchemy, Dragonette, Air (rare)
Marble Foxes: Jian, Marble Fox
Faunicorn: Jinx, Faunicorn 5
Squirrel: HEXtraordinary, Fat White Squirrel
Tabby Cat: Fashionably Dead, Cat 12, Curious
Flying Dragons: Half Deer Solstice Dragons Leafwing, Infinite Light, and PermaFrost
Unicorn: Culprit, UniQrn, SnowLeopard Baby

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