Thursday, 22 January 2009

Not so much as a fashion statement... more of a fashion thesis.

"Here I am,
As I am,
As you make me
Think I am" - Therapy? - Nurse (Published A&M Records 1992)

OK I'm going to come out and say it. My avatar isn't quite what most people expect; and I get a range of comments based on my in-world appearance. ost seem generally quite taken aback with how I look. Some think it's cool... others are evidently disturbed, and the odd few (guys with creation dates less than 4 weeks ago) generally think that because I appear how I do, I must be in-world solely to screw... Well... I'm sure it would have gotten boring after two years if that were the case, but as you can probably guess, it's not.

When I arrived to SL in December '06 I was as lost as anyone else. Well... maybe not *quite* as lost as some. I played about on Help Island 4 for the best part of a week building, figuring out camera controls and getting to know the lie of the land before embarking into SL proper.. and thanks to a handy dandy credit card, and running across SL Boutique I arrived in-world prety much set as I first thought I'd be happy to appear. Short wavy red hair a la ETD, a Nyte and Day black halter, gray mix combat pants and a pair of (what turned out to be dramatically oversized) combat boots, with a shape that was petite; yet not stick thin. Nothing particularly dramatic I give you, but somehing that didn't look entirely like a noob.

In-world, I hit the ol' credit card a second time, bought some more lindens and invested in a Second Skin Labs skin - red to go with the hair... and my work was done... until someone... well... half the grid commented on my footwear being silly. Step in (the then blonde) Trinity Coulter, who whisked me away from Help Island Public, where I had become part of the furniture around the blue circle. She dropped me with aheavy thud in the middle of Curious Kitties, prior to the DK split. I went wow... went nuts and spent a fortune, acquiring practically everything in what were to become my signature colors - red and black. Kalli mark 2 was born.

Kalli, January 24th 2007

This was more or less how I stayed for a VERY long time. I flirted with neko around April, acquiring a Temenos skin and ears selection; but generally as I started to make hair, the effort of throwing together a quirky yet cute wardrobe became less of a priority. Don't get me wrong, I liked the look, and compared to how I am in RL, it was definitely fun. My Av became something of a dress-up doll, and there's no harm in that. Had it continued I suspect though I wouldn't be making hair, and if I were still inworld, I'd be a fashion blogger - knowing me, probably with a page called "Prim Whore" or something... but more on that later.

Either way, it ended because above everythng else, a lot of it felt contrived. While yes, I felt I looked good, and regularly was told I did, I didn't feel entirely comfortable. That and I was starting to work more and more inworld, making hair and so on... so it became obvious to me that when you're locked away from virtual humanity on a posing stand, you really don't have to break out the CK buckle skirt, WRONG braces and skinny rib croptop new from Artilleri. This in mind I started looking for a simple somethng that I could just throw on and work in... then I saw an advert posted in the SL forums. It's random coincidences like this that change your life, I tell you.

Anyway. a new designer (of whom I had never heard) named Jeela Juran had thrown out an advert for metallic hipster pants in a range of colors. I looked at them and though "ooh... they look a little different"... So I went over and after a little umming and ahhing (and a long talk to the designer's other half, Elf Juran) acquired a pair... in cherry red... that matched a camo top from WRONG almost perfectly. From July to October 2007 there I was in-world in a slight deviation from the red theme, and in a slight deviation from what is effectively the whole tee and pants deal. Nothing fancy, but something a little bit different.

Over the next few months, a number of things began to change. I felt more at home in SL... my business became established and I became more confident... above all else, I got to know the palce a little better, and realised that I could express myself a little more freely with how I appeared. I always wanted to push the envelope a little and make use of what was available in-world to stand out from the crowd (as if my diminuative av didn't already). Many people have referred to em as a goth... btu to be honest I never was. More industrial, and one with a penchant for large boots and heavy coats... The development of sculpted prims has been a godsend in that respect, and now I live in sculptie jackets, longcoats and trenches... but often with very little to nothing udnerneath (modesty aside... I cover those bits up!)

I still frequent Jeela's stores, and have updated the hipsters some, now wearing black latex ones rather than red metallic. Why latex? Why not... she does it very well, and I like how it appears. I also know full well I couldn't do it in RL... so it's a fantasy thing I suspect. Naturally I wear my own hair and eyes - Kaiba braids in Penny and Starstruck Alicias (dark hazel) as standard, and the redheaded skin is there, albeit the updated SSL version - a tweaked copy of the Lyra Sublime base.

The one thing I suspect that throws a LOT of people though is the one other item that's become a regular feature... or even a fixture. A Graves G04 leather harness, usually worn over the top of other clothes.

Kalli, 22nd January, 2009

I know what you're thinking. It took me a long while to appreciate why I felt so comfortable walking around in something so binding... so heavilly associated with submission, and that does take some explaination but I am not in any way, shape or form, bound or submissive to anyone inworld. I point blank refuse to, but there's a lot of ground there and I'll save it for another post.

I like my heavy jackets as they offer me protection. I refer to my own RL coat (the one that I take with me everywhere) as my armor, and this transfers wholesale to SL. Underneath it I am weak... vulnerable and easily hurt - hence the desire to be as good as naked under my carapace - more as a reminder to myself than a come-on to others... although it does look rather hot, it has to be said. But the harness is definitely not normal streetwear... but what it does do, symbolically, is hold me in... bound to myself in all my frailty, strapped into my body while offering little protection of its own, but providing a point of focus.

I walk inworld, trussed up in my own bubble. Seemingly confident on the outside but knowing that I am here, effectively, on my own; a prisoner of myself, but protected and safe as a result. I am my own mistress, and submit to my own will.

Until next time,


1 comment:

Puck said...

We are more alike than may seem. You have an exoskeleton, I have an endo(?)skeleton. But they are both our armor.