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A Rose By Any Other Name

April 23rd, 2010 by Roland

I’m just in awe of Triskall Claremont’s ability to imagine what’s never been seen. From his pastel striped over-alls to the Rubis sweater that I wrote about before to — well, just everything he’s done. It’s not easy to create something new within the confines of a particular context like clothing and yet Triskall has done it again and again.

Over the weekend he gave me a sneak peak at his newest release–Shimmer :: Noir.


The shirt and slacks are richly textured with a black background and a stylized flower pattern down the front of the shirt and the outside of the leg. Triskall did a masterful job on the shading and wrinkles here — no mean feat with a black background to work on. On top of that he’s added a very nice lace cuff for the shirt and an asymmetrical prim cuff for the pants. All perfectly matched and needing only a bit of scaling to fit.

Then, there’s the collar and optional belt. The belt consists of a bouquet of roses on a “twisted vine” belt that places the roses at the place where one might find a sash knotted — at the left hip. It’s garnished with a few sprigs of rose bush that wrap around the hip and thigh.


The collar comes in two flavors — Roses and Simple. The collection of roses on the lace collar is accented with a few sprigs of green-leaved rose cane and create a unique look for this outfit. For those who prefer a less flamboyant look, Triskall includes a stand up collar that works well with, say, an open jacket or even as just a stylish sweater

If you’re looking for something a bit different — a terrific texture and unique style — try North*Wind. Noir is just one of the unique offerings you’ll find in his little corner of Prelude.


April 20th, 2010 by Roland

Things in Zepp-ville have been a tad hectic over the last week or so and I’ve been remiss in some of my other blogging duties. One of the things that happened was that Zane Macpherson from Jasper dropped a pack of goodies on me and I’m only getting around to looking inside it now. Sorry, Zane.

One thing that readers here know is that I’m always looking for new texture. There was plenty here. Start with this…

Jasper Hoodie and Shorts

The top is Jasper’s Kai-Hoodie. I love the whimsy in pink here with the stylized animal and the zipper front. I also am intrigued by the pouch pocket in the front. Of all the hoodies I’ve seen, got on hunts, etc, this is the first one I’ve spotted with that feature. I’m wearing it with the gray tank that came with and I like the look, but I could easily have put something else on under it for a bit of accent. I had some problems with the “no mod” cuffs and my big-size body, but I turned them upside-down and they worked really well — maybe better than they would have in the intended position. I’ll probably wear this hoodie around. It makes me laugh.

The shorts are part of a “Summer Plunge” set that seems very well done. The plaid texture and knee-prims set this pair of shorts up nicely. I’m seeing more and more plaid on the grid these days and I have to say, I’m kinda liking what I’m seeing.

And speaking of textures, I first became aware of Jasper because of their skins. I’ve been watching the development for a while now and I like the way this skin works.

Jasper Diurnal Honey

This is Jasper’s Diurnial in honey tone with a dark brow and eyeliner. The color representation is going to be difficult just because the differences in color/light settings in world, your monitor, and my post production of this image have all conspired to change the way you will see it in world. I’m wearing the same skin in the photo above so that’ll give you an idea of the variation in look.

I like this skin. I’m not sure why. Maybe it’s the clean-ness of the coloration and shading. Maybe it’s the simple definition. The neck/collarbone is particularly well done and if the face is a tad on the bland side, I think that sometimes that’s a good thing. The dark brows don’t do much for me, in all honesty. I thought they started too low on the inside of my eye socket and the way they end on the inside … a kind of straightline effect over my nose … seems a bit abrupt. I’d like to see those with a bit of curve there. Even with that, I think this is a darn nice skin. I can see me wearing this for those times when the designer wants a more background look for the model — or for somebody like Simone Stern who likes her models to be a bit on the paler side. Yes, sir, I like it.

Thanks, Zane!

Visit Jasper’s Main Store for more cool stuff. Take a look at the Mr. Bear Chucks when you get there.

Jules Verne

April 19th, 2010 by Roland

I needed to put together an “avant garde” outfit for my recent graduation assessment and, frankly, it’s been a bit of a struggle. Looking at the works of John Galliano, Mads Norgaard, and Viktor & Rolf really only made it worse. Much of the kind of thing that they do isn’t available on the grid, as nearly as I’ve found and I lack the skills to make them myself. In a recent show, I got a chance to see the InMOTHion Collection from Chantkare and realized that “avant garde” does exist on the grid, beyond the ultra outre stylings of the likes of alpha.tribe with their hybrid skin/prim outfits. So inspired by Chantkare and with a little help from my friends, I decided to see what I could do to create my own “avant grid” creation.

Here’s what I came up with along with an extract from the show description:

Homage Take2

“An Homage to Jules Verne on the 200th Anniversary of His Birth, February the Eighth, in the Year of Our Lord 2028.”

The inspiration for this work comes from the vest — The Brass Differential — a beautifully rendered waistcoast from To-a-T. The brassy colors and rich textures developed into this outfit. Triskall Claremont’s take on the collar and tie, in a richly textured Rubris sweater is topped by an exquisitely rendered Prince Charlie jacket from the skilled kilt makers at Bellissima. For trousers, I selected a pair of silk tuxedo pants with cummerbund from RFyre’s Eitienne. The smoothly textured and subtly shaded blacks complement the rich reds and provide the foundational element.

Eponymous Trenchmouth’s art as shoe maker is presented in the sumptuously rendered Dublin Boot in Maroon. With side laces, generously rendered complete with lace, eye, and silver aglet, and exquisitely detailed stitching on the lasts, these gorgeous red shoes maintain the retro feel of this avant garde construction.

While it’s not part of the larger show description, I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention the primOptic Crowe glasses and the TTF Mohawk. These two pieces add so much to the overall look. The glasses are color, opacity, frame change and let me select a nice gold color that picks up the piping in the vest nicely. The mohawk from Thea Tamura Fashions is set up in gold and silver options making this match up of metal and hair practically seamless. I love the way this hair moves! The only problem I had with it was that two of the innermost locks on the inside of the back fell into my clothing and that – for a model – is a no-no. I was able to deal with that by making those two strands of hair transparent and then shaped the lengths on a few more to give it a more rounded shape in the back that let me pose on the runway without faux pas of the hair variety.

My only problem now is that I don’t want to take this “avant grid” outfit off.

Let’s Hear It for the Boys

April 16th, 2010 by Roland

On Saturday, April 17th at 1pm SLT, Deja Vogue presents “Let’s Hear It for the Boys” — a show dedicated to men’s fashion featuring some of the grid’s best in menswear. I’m honored to be participating in this show and here’s a little preview of what I’ll be wearing on the runway.

First, from Shiki, this very interesting zip-up sweater and grunge jeans combination:


I like the fact that Shiki has taken the “jeans and tee-shirt” look for spring and updated it with a nice zip-up (that’s not a hoodie) and added the strappy epaulets for dimension. The grunge jeans are very nicely textured with a crisp grunge look that avoids looking muddy. These jeans actually come with the belt as shown and are available at the Shiki main store in the new Spring 2010 section on the second floor. I looked but didn’t see the sweater available yet, but I’m guessing it’s only because I didn’t look hard enough in the right place.

Next, from Bellissima, the boy-next-door look for a lovely spring day:


If you follow my at all, you’ll know I get a bit fanboy over Elle74 Zaftig’s work in kilts. My enthusiasm for her work is only enhanced with this wonderfully understated sweater and trousers outfit. The stripes across the chest and a sumptuous knit texture give the top great dimension while subtle shading on the pants add a low-key foundation. Visit Bellissima and you’ll find that this outfit comes in three different colored stripes (blue, green, and brown camo), two colors of denim trousers (blue and black), and it even comes with the shoes. This ensemble is a virtual wardrobe in a box!

Finally, from Ambergris, this Dark Wedding cut-away:


This deceptively simple outfit has a lot of nuances. First, the cutaway jacket owes a lot to the regency cutaway with the over-the-hip styling with the tail-coat. The use of the buttoned waistcoat in a solid gray gives the mottled jacket texture into a brocade feel without the busy-ness often found in brocades. The pants in a lighter gray are actually subtly striped and shaded to give the outfit a nice foundation.

The show also features Chantkare Male with outfits from the new InMOTHion 2010 line inspired by the coloration patterns of various moths. These are amazing works of art that you’ll not want to miss.

To see all the men’s fashion and a rare opportunity to see a show with only men’s wear, mark your calendars for Saturday, April 17th at 1pm. Help support men’s fashion on the grid and come down to Deja Vogue to see this unique showing of spring fashion.

Royal Highlander

April 15th, 2010 by Roland

My collection of kilts keeps growing, and with it my appreciation for both the kilt as clothing and the art of Elle74 Zaftig in crafting these unique fashion statements.

Blackwatch Piper

This glorious stretch of tartan is a Black Watch Piper’s Kilt. As with all of Bellissima’s kilt ensembles, this one is impeccably tailored with prims and textures that are rendered as authentically as might be managed within the limits of SL’s rendering engines. This particular kilt — with the prim sashes and epaulets — has a bit more trouble than others just because of the prims don’t have the same flex as the avatar’s mesh body, but it’s still an amazing feat of construction. From ghillie boot to regimental collar, this is a wonderful piece of work.

This particular kilt came to me as part of a modeling assignment. If you’d like to see me wearing this kilt on the runway, catch the Deja Vogue Spring Show on Sunday, April 18th, at noon SLT. Rumor is there’ll be more kilts from Bellissima and fashion from other fine designers like Ambergris, Chantkare, and Shiki. Save the date and come see us.

I wonder if I can find a set of pipes before the show …

Pink Shirt Day, Part Duh!

April 14th, 2010 by Roland


Originally uploaded by roland_zepp

The grid is awash in pink today. It’s really kinda cool.

These pink sneaker boots are a freebie from Renee Harvey at Duh!. I really like the styling. The boot tops and sneaker bottoms along with the nicely realized laces and open tongue make me smile just lookin’ at them.

There are a bunch of other shoes and boots available there as well so if you’re looking for something to go with your pink shirt? Maybe check out Duh.

Thanks, Renee!

Stand Up Against Bullies

April 14th, 2010 by Roland


Originally uploaded by roland_zepp

In a tradition of solidarity that began in a Nova Scotia high school in 2007, I’m standing up against bullying today by wearing my pink shirt proudly!

Bullying is one of those ideas that generally gets brushed aside as a kind of right-of-passage but all too frequently the scars of bullying last a lifetime. Bullies get their leverage by attacking the loners, and you can help stop bullying where you see it by standing up together against those who would try.

Today is Pink Shirt Day. Stand up against bullying! I’m wearing this classic Shiki special edition Aloha shirt in pink today. What are you wearing?

Ladies Wear … Aisle Twelve

April 13th, 2010 by Roland

I’m a sucker for contests, even when the deck is stacked against me. LOOK Elite Modeling has periodic “Quick Contests” where they announce a sponsor and models have two hours to put together a look using that sponsor’s stuff. It doesn’t have to be the whole outfit, but at least something. The goal is to rock the runway with this look and you can walk away with cash and prizes, etc. I’ve wanted to get in on one of these for awhile now, but today I finally got a chance.

The catch? The sponsor only sells women’s wear. I almost blew this one off but just for the heck of it, I took a trip to MALT to see if I could maybe find a tee-shirt that didn’t have boob-shading on it or something so I could at least show up and walk the runway. I didn’t really have a pixel’s prayer in paradise of winning, but I wanted to at least get in the game.

I’m glad I did.


Khea Karas is the designer behind MALT and she’s got some brilliant stuff there. Followers of this space know my on-going search for texture and design for men. Yes, I know this is a woman’s jacket and a woman’s pair of jeans, but they’re amazingly well done. The Painted Jacket in grass green sports a unique collar shape consisting of two prims that give the flared jacket and inner shirt collars a very nice structure. The pattern of paint spatters and stenciling is very cool — as if the jacket were sewn from an old painting tarp or something. Moreover, the jacket is not overly shaded across the chest so I didn’t feel like I was trying to walk with extra emphasis on moobs.

The Recycled Jeans are likewise excellently executed with just the right amount of fraying and terrifically matched seams. They’re good solid, skinny legged jeans with some very nice prim-work cuffs that worked very nicely with my JCS Oslo Boots. These also came with a capri length with prim-cuffs and they might just be one of the pieces I’ve been looking for to put together an avant-garde look a la John Galliano.

As it sat, the jacket really is meant for a woman and the square cutout at the neckline would look wonderful on a bit of nicely shaded skin of the female persuasion, but the off-center look on a guy didn’t really do it for me, so I layered one of Simone’s Gun Tee’s in red under it to help emphasize the gorgeous green. The jacket and pants came in more than enough layers that I was able to layer the jacket over the tee and still have the trailing edge of the shirt show up untucked over the jeans.

Of course I didn’t win, but I did get a nice jacket, found a great pair of jeans, was introduced to a fine designer, and I had some fun doing it.

What’s not to like?

Jacket: MALT Fashions – Painted Jacket – Grass
Jeans: MALT Fashions – Recycled Jeans – Brown
Shirt: Simone! – Gun Tee – Red
Shoes: JCS – Oslo Boots – Brown
Glasses: Role Optic – Recon

Skin: Belliza – Mathieu 6 SK
Hair: CriCri – CriCri-mShort04-D
Eyes: Amacci – Forest

Something Different

April 10th, 2010 by Roland

I’ve been looking for haute couture and avant garde fashion for men on the grid for the last couple of weeks. One of the key frustrations has been a lack of variety in texture and a certain sameness of design. Coat, shirt, pants. There’s not a lot of variation there, although I do enjoy my kilt. Shirt, collar, and tie are the most common features with the odd turtle-, crew-, or henly- neck shirt. I understand that men on the grid are a bit more conservative in design and style. I figured they must be, given the almost endless supply of “more of the same” I’ve run across while searching for something different.

But then Xenobia found a blog post that pointed me to North*Wind and Triskall Claremont…

(Click for the really closeup view)

This is Brocade Rubis and represents one of several jewel-tone sweaters with a unique take on the collar and tie. What grabbed me about this piece was the texture on the sweater itself. It’s not solid, it’s beautifully shaded, and has a dimensionality to it that is second to none. Add in the collar with a trio of trims and ties, and the fact that it’s more lace-trimmed cowl than turtleneck. Add the cuffs with matching lace and ties. Do the sum and you’re left with something quite different in men’s fashion.

As if that weren’t enough, I found this more traditional take on collared shirt there, too.


A couple of things set this one apart. First, the collar is closed. It’s a very different look than one finds in men’s casual shirts. They normally go for the relaxed, open collar and open chest look. This one has an almost avant garde feel to it — a kind of Geek Cred styling with the shirt buttoned up to the chin. The texture is an exceptionally delicate floral pattern for a man’s shirt — too small for a “hawaiian” and too big to be overlooked as background pattern. There’s even a button on the collar tabs as accent. Not as a “button down” style, you understand, but as decoration.

Triskall adds another little detail to this design and it shows up in the shirtcuffs.


These french cuffs are “backwards.” One would normally expect the cuff-tail and buttons to be behind the wrist — on the pinkie side of the hand. Triskall has put this uniquely styled cuff with the buttons up, and the detailing on this bit of clothing architecture tells me just how much thought he puts into his work. This is precisely the kind of thing I’ve been looking for in my search for something different.

Find North*Wind at Prelude.

See what Chic Critique had to say about another North*Wind outfit.

Purple Passion

April 9th, 2010 by Roland

As part of my studies at the Fashion Institute, I’m required to put together a collection of styles. One of them is “haute couture.” We know that the grid isn’t Paris and there’s no Chambre de commerce et d’industrie de Vie Seconde to declare who’s in the club, so the operating definition falls back to “finely done” and, in a certain sense, “making a statement.” I’ve been looking at John Galliano, Viktor & Rolf, and Mads Norgaard for inspiration and running into difficulty. Until Xenobia spotted this beauty at Menslosophy.

Violet Viola

This classically tailored snap collar jacket gets an update to its one-button, slash pocket styling with the addition of wide, folded cuffs on the sleeves and the hallmark silver embroidery on the lapels. Silver piping carries down the front and around the tails, giving this piece a very put-together and finished look. Amanda Bolero of Menlosophy paid extra attention to the tailoring and textures on this with darted seams down the front and swaths of “against the grain” velvet napping realistically placed across the back. With the delicate shading and careful design, you can practically feel the soft velvet in this jacket.

Did I mention that it’s purple?

The traditional black and gray motif of haute couture is maintained by the addition of a classic turtleneck jersey in dark gray from [hate this], a pair of black silk dress slacks from Simone! and JCS’s Italian styled Sebastian shoes in charcoal.

The slacks feature a silver buckled belt, carefully placed creases down the front of the leg and silver buttons at the hip pocket in the back. Simone Stern works her magic on the shading in these pants – taking a flat black into three dimensionals with the careful application of gray and charcoal highlights.

Eponymous Trenchmouth’s skill with the prim in creating shoes is legendary and this pair of Italian style wingtips features exquisitely rendered detailing in the leather and even silvery tips on the laces for a splash of flash where few expect it.

I love this outfit. The traditional smooth lines and use of the turtleneck jersey in lieu of shirt and tie pays homage to Versace and Lauren. The classic styling of the pants and the detailing in the shoes takes nothing away from the sumptuous feel of the velvet plush in the jacket.

Jacket: Menlosophy – Violet Viola Jacket
Shirt: [hate this] – Turtle Neck (dark gray)
Slacks: Style Starts Here – Men’s Dress Pants (Black)
Shoes: JCS – Sebastian (charcoal)

Hair: – Al (coffee)
Skin: Belleza – Mathieu 6 (tan)