Friday, January 11, 2008

Trench: Epilogue

I had to show you a pic of myself in that trench without the skirt prim. It looks great both with and without.


Tuesday, January 1, 2008


Generally, when men think about trench coats, they think about one thing: Neo from the Matrix. Fashion-wise, that's not so bad; the dark, fitted outfits with designer sunglasses is a great look, even ten or so years later. That having been said, there are a lot of trench coats and variations thereupon which make an outfit look really good, and I want to point you at a favorite of mine: The leather trench coat by Cubic Effect.

A good trench is a huge step in the right direction towards wearing "big boy" clothes, and this one is a great example. Available in a brown (which isn't that great), white (which isn't that great), and grey (which is terrific), the workmanship is positively awesome. Through various prim-additions (six in total) and a jacket-layer, the look is subtle in all the right ways; from the padded shoulders to the loose belt buckle... from the understated leather stitching in the skirt prim to the roguishly-popped collar, this is the one trench you really should have in your arsenal for all occasions. As you can see, it lends itself nicely to a businesslike collar-and-trouser look, complete with dress shoes and so-on, but you can also put it together with a grungier, dirtier look and it still fits in just fine. One thing I've enjoyed doing is trying it with and without the skirt prim, as the jacket layer and other prim attachments make for a nice waistcoat. In particular, I like the open belt with buckle (rather than a tie). This is one of those miniscule details upon which excellent personal style is built.

Be warned, however, that this trench is not a one-size-fits-all kind of deal. Be prepared to adjust prims until you're blue in the face and prepare to accept some small design-level problems that would be nearly impossible to fix. For instance, if you adjust the collar properly to get the maximum amount of the prim displayed as you can, you'll probably notice some separation between the prim and the jacket, leaving some gaps. Don't blame designer Mirai Jun, however; it would be impossible to invent a prim that's going to sit right on every man's shape. You will, therefore, need to do some adjusting on your own to get it just so. This is one of those big-league outfit items, so don't be put off by a the adjusting work; it'll pay off.

The only other thing you're gonna want to keep in mind is that the prim skirt can sometimes move "into" the leg if your AO poses you in particular ways. I didn't find this to be a big problem at all (and neither you nor anyone else will notice after the first few seconds, if at all), but the ongoing plague of prim skirts falling through the body (a problem women in SL are very familiar with) shows its face once again in this item.

The thing about big boy clothes is that they are understated. They command attention rather than demanding it. Where some attempt to communicate their personal image through bigger, bolder, louder statements, this trench coat invites a more discerning eye. Trust me; you will get asked about it... in the good way.

Check out this leather trench at Cubic Effect.

Other stuff:
Vizion glasses from Prim-optic
Jeans & boxers from Canimal
Shirt, tie & trousers from Armidi
Tattoos from Etch'd
Shoes from Shiny Things
Boots from Drawmachine
Hair from Naughty

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

About sex in Second Life

So you say you don't care so much about fashion in Second Life as you do about just getting laid? That's fine. It's good to know what you're here for. Before you dust off your hands and flip the bird to the fashionistas, here are some things you should know:

Women -including women you think are out of your league- are perfectly willing to have wild, toe-curling, bedsheet-tearing sex with you. Whatever your wildest, dirtiest fantasy is, there's a girl out there who is willing to do it with you right now. What you don't realize is that women, when choosing a prospective partner, look at the cut of a suit jacket, the break of pant cuffs over a shoe, and the way your tie is knotted. What they do not care one whit for is how big your giant, pink, jutting prim penis attachment is. In fact, women always (yes, I said *always*) make fun of guys who wag their erections around, as if to say "just in case you didn't put 2 and 2 together yourself, I'm here to have some sex".

If you want to get laid, and you know that's your priority, start thinking less about a baboon-like display of reproductive organs and think more about French cuffs and navy gabardine three-button jackets. Or perfectly-worn jeans and the appropriately sooty beater and boots. Or the right bowling shoes and emo army trench over a t-shirt with the perfect nihilistic slogan. What I can tell you right here and now is that if there is a woman out there who wants to see a giant freebie penis -longer than your arm- sticking out from your naked body like a flag-pole... you aren't going to want her.

Trust me on that.

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Into the kitchen

If you want to see what good style is, all you have to do is enter "George Clooney" into Google Image Search and click the button. Unfortunately, this will help you understand good style in the same way that looking at pictures of pavlova will teach you how to make one. Speaking of food, if you want to be a chef, you need a well-stocked kitchen. The time to buy flour and a mixing bowl is not at the moment you're about to start making dinner. There are items that a master chef's kitchen needs to have on the shelves at all times that let him work his magic, and these are called "staples". Your interest may not be the perfect soufflé, but I can promise you that George Clooney's closet has certain staples in his closet which make him the guy your girlfriend wishes you were every time you tuck your t-shirt into your sweat pants.

First of all, let's look and see if your cupboards are well-stocked; as a fashionable man in SL, you need these items in your inventory:

- A good white t-shirt and a good black t-shirt. These should be shirt-layer items and you should use your "edit appearance" function to create underwear to go with them so that there's no gap between the shirt and the belt of your pants. No logos, no slogans, no cute phrases about ninjas, clowns, or mustache rides. Just solid, shirt-layer t-shirts. If you have to make them yourself using "edit appearance", then do it... but there are so many good t-shirt options out there from reputable designers that you shouldn't have to settle for that as anything but a last resort.

- A good pair of classic jeans which flatter your body... and when I say "flatter your body", I don't mean you should crank your Package slider up to the top (unless you like women rolling their eyes at you). No, these jeans should be clean blue jeans. Simple as that. No rips, no tears, no paint splatters, no peace symbols, no gang signs, no patches, no funny dye jobs or any other "custom" work. Just the basics, man.

- A pair of sneakers, a pair of boots, and a pair of dress shoes. When thinking of sneakers, think classic Chuck Taylors or an understated pair of modern Pumas... not so much the puffy kind (no). Your boots should be the kind you can wear boot-cut jeans over and not the sort you put on before going on a mission to raid an Orc encampment. Cowboy boots are fine, desert boots are fine, anything with chains or spikes are not. Finally, your dress shoes can range from a tasteful pair of loafers to something a bit more formal; just make sure you can wear them with a suit. Bookmark On Your Toes and watch the RSS feed; I write a lot of male-specific shoe stuff there and it's a good way to keep up on what's hot.

- A good pair of sunlasses, fitted properly to your head. Features such as being able to change the opacity or texture are a bonus, but a good classic look is more important... so don't sacrifice the latter for the former. If, however, you can change the opacity so that you have clear lenses and they look good as reading glasses, all the better.

- A suit... one that can be edited so that you can increase or lengthen the cuffs and pantlegs to the exact, perfect length (with suits, this matters). You should also have a good prim tie to go with it, though you may or may not always use it. The suit should be in a dark earth tone; if you have a purple or red suit, you can't check this item off yet. Naturally, you're going to need a shirt-layer button-down shirt to go with it.

Here's a list of things you don't need as staples:

- A penis. By the time you get to the point where you think you might conceivably use it, the woman in question isn't going to care. Trust me on this.

Later, we'll get into where you can find these things, what you can expect to pay, and what makes them "good" or "bad". We'll also get into other non-clothing style items (like hair and animation-overrides), and we may even add more staples to the master list.

For now, start thinking about stocking that kitchen. George isn't the only good chef out there.

Who is this blog for?

Men and women are different in many ways, but one way that stands out in my mind is this: Women seek fashion advice, whereas men tend to need it. Think for a moment: How many times have you heard a woman lament her husband/boyfriend's lack of fashion sense... and how many times have you heard a man do the same about his wife/girlfriend's? Guys, it's time for a reality check: If you aren't consciously taking the time to dress well, the woman in your life is likely rolling her eyes behind your back.

Before we dive into the virtual world of male fashion, I want to be clear about a few things: If you're in Second Life because you want to build, this blog isn't for you. If you don't feel as if the look of your avatar is important enough to worry about or spend money on, this blog isn't for you. If you don't enjoy fashion and reading about it, this blog isn't for you. I want to make the point up front that what makes a man (yes, even in Second Life) is his character, integrity, and whether or not he does some good in the world. Failure to match your trousers with your sports coat doesn't make you less of a human being, and enjoying the minutiae of fashion is about style... not judging others. Let's be clear about that.

If, however, you want to know what Second Life has to offer as far as men's style and fashion but have troubles finding the resources, this blog is for you. If you want to spend time in Second Life experimenting with styles and looks that you could never afford in real life, this blog is for you. If you're a guy who knows that women are going to size him up by the outfit he wears, this blog is for you.

I'm going to primarily focus on articles of clothing and what makes them work. Occasionally, I will delve into "how-to" articles or interviews as well. Shoe fans (and I mean aficionados, not... well, you know) should head over to On Your Toes, a blog I contribute to which gives you the latest and greatest of the Second Life footwear scene for both men and women. Overall, the focus of this blog will be about making you look like the kind of man a woman wants to be with.

Ok, chief. Let's get on with it.