Or What’s a Heaven For?

Reve d'Espoir 1

…Ah, but a man’s reach should exceed his grasp,
Or what’s a heaven for…?

Robert Browning, from “Andrea del Sarto”


Browning’s poem here speaks of hope.  If humanity is to advance, then someone must always be dreaming of the next step beyond what we can achieve now; for if we cannot dream of something greater, we are doomed to be always stuck where we are.  Belle Roussel of Chop Zuey seems to have that dream within her; she’s never been satisfied with what she can do now, with variations on a theme.  She began with a small store and doing only jewelry; these days, her store covers most of a region, includes a skybox second floor, and she’s adding on lovely haute couture gowns with associated suites that tie into the dress’ concept.

The gown I wear here is named Rêve d’espoir, or “Dream of Hope.”  (You should look for it at Chop Zuey without the circumflex on the e.)  And it’s definitely a next step for Belle.  I love the fluid black satin of the dress itself; but then she adds in the scarf streaming behind you as you walk, and the wide lace flounce at your feet.  This is a gown meant for dreams, and grand ones at that.

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Then you get to the jewelry sold with the gown.  A great, chunky bracelet; a massive ring and earrings; a huge “brooch” that links the bodice of the gown to the scarf, turning the scarf into the gown’s “halter”; a pair of intricate hair sticks; and last but not least, the fascinator…!  Such semi-hats are normally flippant fripperies of fabric and feathers1, but this one is solid gold and gems.  It normally perches over the eyes straight out of the box, but I rotated and twitched it to the side of my head here, so that I could use it with this Tableau Vivant hairstyle I picked up during Hair Fair2.  I think I am completely in love with this gown!

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The details finish off the gown:  an imperial purple makeup palette, matching nails (for SLink Hands) from La Boheme (who may be turning into my goto for SLink nail appliers), and a pair of pumps from N-core.  It’s good to be going back to N-core for my shoes; I couldn’t wear their pieces with built-in feet on all of my avatars due to skin-matching problems (especially on my gold skins).  Appliers for skins are changing that — one of the things I do enjoy about the modern trend in mesh body parts — and N-core is yielding to the pressure of time’s advance.  The texture of the leather is wonderful here as well; I’ll go out on a limb and say it’s materials-ready, but you may want to check with the store to be sure.

What the hell was that I just saw?


The details:

  • Skin: Glam Affair Cleo (America – Clean B)
  • Hair: Tableau Vivant Last train home
  • Eyes: Sterling Artistry Jeweled Eyes (brightblue)
  • Nails: La Boheme Bullet Gold
  • Attachments: SLink hands and feet; StrawberrySingh.com Broken Ankle Fix – Ankle Lock v2.0
  • Gown and jewelry: Chop Zuey Reve d’Espoir (gown includes scarf; jewelry suite is HUD-driven, includes braclet, “chest brooch,” earrings, ring, hair sticks and fascinator)
  • Shoes: N-core Stiletto “Green” pumps for SLink High Feet
  • Makeup: Miamai LesMakeups Lashes 11; Oceane Jade Lips (Bordeaux); JUMO Alexa Glitter Eyeshadow (Duo 015 Forest)


1 Ah; alliteration’s artful aid.  (Thank you, Dorothy Leigh Sayers.)

2 It is a frustration that I wasn’t able to write about all of my choices from Hair Fair before the event closed.  I’ll see about working some of them into future articles for a while, though Wigs for Kids won’t be getting much donation from the creators now.

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