Fashion for the Holidays

Let’s face it; I’m a fashionista at heart. In the daytime, I can knock around in a T-shirt and jeans (sometimes supplemented by an “intelligent” Oracle cloak from Avilion Mist). Although I am considering adding in some proper daytime suits (grin). But at night…. Well, let me quote from a story by a writer I’ve found online (with permission):

[F]estive gowns were the largest part of the catalogue. Dannta explained it this way: “Work mostly takes place in the light of day, and is done well and to your best ability, and its clothing reflects that utilitarian time; colors change, but the basics don’t. So it is, to a lesser degree, with other clothing of the day.

“But the night is a time of relaxation, of celebration. The work of the day is done for the most part, and you rejoice in its good completion. Your friends are at hand, and you enjoy their company. There are arts to be patronized, entertainments to see, children to play with, parties to attend, and love to make with your lover. The creativity of the dress reflects that change in mood, for creativity lives in dreams, and dreams live in the night.”

I agree with that philosophy, and I try to uphold it in this place, where such a life is easily possible.

When I see a fantastic new gown, it’s hard to resist buying it right off. (I usually give in [sigh].) So, when I spotted these gowns while tag-surfing through SL fashion blogs and articles, I just had to rush out and snaffle them. They come from several different designers: two not so well known (at least I think they aren’t, but they should be for this work) — and, sadly, one who is not among us anymore. I’m modeling them here in photos I shot in a photosphere park.

Adagio, from The Oh! Factor Adagio, from The Oh! Factor

First, here is Adagio from Eleanora Newell of The Oh! Factor. This gown comes in several lovely jewel colors; in addition to the Citrine I’m modeling here, I also chose Sapphire and Emerald versions. The full skirt floats nicely with you as you walk, of course; but the stars of the confection’s show are the sleeves. They come in two flavors (click on the thumbnails): a simpler type for those more “casual” moments; and, when you’re going all out for romance and medieval glamour, choose the ruched “capper” sleeve-tops. These almost resemble a boa or stole, but they are only on the shoulders of the gown.

Andromeda, by Ann Otoole and Unique Needs Andromeda, by Ann Otoole and Unique Needs Andromeda, by Ann Otoole and Unique Needs

Before I found Eleanora (through her blog, SubliminaLuminations), I had come across Ann Otoole of Unique Needs, who is participating in the Ewing Fashion Agency Design Awards competition with Andromeda, the flag gown in her Empress line. These gowns are the purest fantasy, and light-years away from what Ann usually creates — bondage gear. This is nowhere near bondage — unless you wish to tie up your SO’s heart [grin]. The seven dresses in the collection are mostly similar, the differences being in the color and beading. As for Andromeda, the colors are black, with silver and space-dust grey accents, large silver-sequin stars, and trails of gold comet dust. The hem is a solid run of gold embroidery. The gown has shoulder straps, and there is also a removable lace blouse (“undershirt”) for the full effect.

What accessories should you wear with this confection? Don’t worry; Andromeda comes with everything — shoes; gloves; a cape with a tall empress collar; and jewels beyond belief, including one of the nicer tiaras I’ve seen on the Grid. You even get two flavors of skirt, a normal flex skirt and a “trainable” version that I haven’t tackled yet. And all this for only £350 (£500 for the other gowns, for some reason, but still extremely affordable). These dresses are the largest shopping bags I’ve ever received into my Inventory! Be the belle of the ball, and still have enough for your next week’s rent without having to visit the LindeX.

(I would recommend an updo hairstyle for this gown if you’re going to wear the cape, and something off the bangs if you have on the tiara. Anything upswept in my Inventory was edgy/punky, and totally inappropriate to the romance of this dress. If anyone knows of something sort of vintage Fifties or Sixties bouffant — a good bouffant — give me a shout.)

Nadirra, by Ginny Talamasca Nadirra, by Ginny Talamasca

Nadirra was created by the late Ginny Talamasca, and I discovered it while reading an appreciation of her life in New World Notes. Although I haven’t seen all of her work, I’m definitely planning to head back to her stores for as long as they’re open. As for this gown, it’s actually quite simple: a blue skirt with a blue/gold brocade strapless bodice, and an optional gold overskirt. But, as with all of Ginny’s work, it’s the quality of the design, the fabric (texture) and the “cut” that set it apart. I fell in love with this from the first time I saw the photo in New World Notes, and hunted down Last Call to purchase it. (You can find it around coordinates (38, 109, 29].)

Does anyone else have a gown they’d recommend for the New Year’s celebrations?

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