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Winter

Winter in a box

When you’re the owner of an entire sim on a private estate or independently, there is a series of regional settings you can control that are not available to simple parcel owners or anyone living in Linden land. One of them lets you customize the appearance of the ground texture, so it can fit your landscaping needs.

When your kingdom is très petit, even smaller than the tiny world of the Little Prince, winter is probably the most difficult season to cope with the rest of the neighborhood, especially if you’re the only one cheerfully expecting the first snowfall –unless you live in the frozen confines of old Sansara, the ever whitish Snowlands, where the problem is exactly the reverse: how to fit in during the summer. You can, of course, cover your land with some prims and sprinkle them with snow and ice textures, use any of the available pre-made landscaping kits (with dozens of options to choose from), or even get your hands on a chic tool such as JVTEK’s LandMap to cover the ground with a precise layer you can paint as desired. But remember: the rest of the sim may remain as green as ever, and your plot will stand out as the shiniest rarity in the ‘hood.

For the last two winters –this one included– I’ve been living in different parts of mainland. To avoid any seasonal confrontation with my tropical acquaintances, I have rezzed a little skybox above the clouds to build my arctic “miniscape”. It’s not exactly as building at ground level, but there are so many options today that the scenery can even be lively in a limited vault like this.

 

My permafrost dwelling rests in a small 1696 sq.m. parcel, and it consists of:

  • Turnip – 40 x 40 Skydome, with winter textures.
  • Studio Skye – Enchanted woods, Snow Formations, and Silver birch.
  • 3D Trees – some accessories from a winter trees pack.
  • Botanical – Touch 2 Change Split Rail Fence
  • Happy Mood – Snowy road (sans rocks)
  • Dysfunctional Designs – several snowmen
  • Dust Bunny – Hunter’s Retreat (rare gacha item from the Old Fashioned Winter set at Nº21 event)
  • Tia – Love Doves Birdbath (rare gacha item from last year’s Winter is Coming set; machine is still available in store)
  • LISP – Victorian Street Lamp (white icy with snow version)

Except for 3D Trees, all other products are mesh, and I still have more than 200 prims left, woot! Snow in the pics is is a combo of a Happy Mood product and a texture+script from yours truly.

Lionheart house 001

Rethinking the lion (from within a Bamboo refuge)

About a year ago I began to write a blog post –that never got completed and was put into the trash can, where it still is I guess– about how alienating living in a stand-alone sim and then faking mountains around your property to stand up for less aggressive privacy lines was turning to be. I stopped writing it because that’s what most people look for, it seems, or those big pseudo-estates with hundreds of sims dully distributed in giant waffle-like expanses wouldn’t be so successful. I prefer to have neighbors –good ones, let me be specific– and having sims to walk through and see what other sentient beings like to create and call their own. Yes I know you can TP anywhere and all, but adjoining sims offer another kind of experience; even the interaction with people living in them is more vivid and rich. Or that’s the way I see it, at least.

Lionheart main building

So that’s why I moved to Lionheart Estate, searching for that sense of community… and then you know that it kind of went the wrong way. I am persistent, though, so I got back to my little plot in there to try and do something… enjoyable for the rest of the time remaining on the tier meter. Thanks to a quick New Year’s snow melting process (or should I call it sublimation), the readaptation was gratifying, to the point that I may be giving the estate another, more durable, chance.

First, there’s no landscaping involved in this new setting. That’s why I don’t like pre-fabricated –a.k.a. themed– regions that much, because they generally restrict what you can do with the land. Lionheart is not a themed region per se, but as to secure the consistency and well being of the estate and its residents (what Mainland have never had nor done, and so why it’s such a large obnoxious patchwork) strict rules have been put into place. But that’s ok; it actually becomes a challenge: to see what you can do within what is permissible. Second, this is a more… contemporary look, unlike anything I’ve done before, so it was refreshing. Third, I tried not to disrupt my immediate neighbor, building up walls around the yard to keep that which my eyes don’t appreciate away from sight; I solved that “issue” using some nice bamboo to function as natural “privacy screens”. Maybe that’s the antidote to remedy Mainland’s suffering: to enforce bamboo plantations between limits, lol.

{ Items } I’ve already given slurls for some of these items in recent posts, so I’m listing those that haven’t gotten any mention yet. Nature & Garden: 3D Trees, Bamboo. Buddhabeats, Bamboo 2011. XED Design, Dracaena in terracota pot, Snake plant (garden). Culprit, Lotus (from Lotus barrel). Ossanha Gardens, Stepping stones (that link is to the Marketplace because I don’t know if the sim is still there; saw it as on sale as of this writing). Organica, Stepping stones (mossy). Landscaping by Felix, Rock (from one of his prefab landscape sets). nonino, Chouzu-bachi. || Architecture: Breno, Mars (Sunny). drobak, Hako house (this one may not be available anymore; this little cube house dates back from 2009, and I think I got it from a lucky board as well). || Furniture: One Grid, Wall tree with lamp, Deco birds. Bazar, Privacy screen & Entrance rug (from Arizona set). Cheeky Pea, Rue Abel loveseat.  MudHoney, Meredith chair. LISP, Anna prints. what next, Flyaway wall art (Dandelions & Birds). Tatty Soup, Tall lily vase. POST, Votive (candles) & Tivoli birdbath (modded). ililo, Eiffel slat table. Art Dummy, Idle (pompom flowers and vase). floorplan, Pallet couch (available at FaMeshed right now, that’s the slurl to the event, not the main store). MMGraffiti’s, Wall decoration – Picture frames (blue). PILOT, Larkin set vase. GiornoBrando [GB], Nodategasa (red).

Backyard in Lionheart house

So I’m staying in Lionheart a little bit more, and won’t rush payments anymore and go a week at a time. Now, if only those big signs of an expiration notice weren’t so intruding…

Nowhere, Jan. 2013

Spacious: Nowhere

If you read my post about 2012 in review, you already know that I recently moved to a different estate and the reasons why I did it. Such action, of course, calls for more landscaping! This time, being a quarter homestead, it means a lot of work too. In terms of  land capacity or prim allowance, it equals my old 4096 sq.m. parcel on a full sim (937), but it offers four times the space to play with. That doesn’t make the job any easier, I tell you; it’s “worst”, but in a good way: more details to think about. Because of that, the time to finish the whole plot also quadruplicated, and so did the number of pictures taken as a result lol. So I’m keeping the words to a minimum (what I would have said, I said already anyway), and go straight to the picks (yeah, the ones you’re going to see are but a handful of the pics I shot). I’m breaking what was going to be a single long post into several short ones as to avoid boring you too much, or making you come back another day. It’s better for the pictures anyway.

Nowhere

In a sense, but without planning, the plot is divided into four sections. The first one is where the house sits in. It’s a normal islet that carries on the name I’ve been giving to my home-lot  since forever. It houses a shed playing the part of home, a greenhouse, a water tower and a windmill; enough to make for a comfortable living in SL. Besides me and a couple of birdies, it also accommodates a banyan tree in the northwest corner.

Parenthesis: If there were a sim available with “nowhere”  as its name I would have tried to make it my home base a long time ago, hehe. Actually, taking a look at the SL map, there’s a grayed-out sim called NoWhere, but is is either inaccessible for some mysterious reason, or it doesn’t exist anymore. The thing is it’s nowhere to be found; no kidding, go and try to TP in. Aside from that, there’s also Nowhere City, an ugly “split-identity” ground-textured homestead of the kind I’ve never seen before (interesting concept, though), and Nowhereville, a normal one, but not Nowhere alone.

[ Items ]  Nature: 3D Trees, Banyan tree. Frog’s Garden, Ivy. XED Design, Bird of Paradise, Cheeseplant & Peace Lily. Tatty Soup, Ronnie cactus. || Architecure: POST, Gnesen Farm Shed. The Domineaux Effect, Fence & Old dock. MMGraffiti’s, Landing pier (modified). lame, Pergola. || Furniture:  Cheeky Pea, Sweetwater Bench. Zinnias, Kiva Spirit Ladder. Happy Mood, Stump table set.

[ Additional items ] Nature: POST, Gnarled birch tree. Organica, Japanese maple bonsai, Suiseki arrangement, Hinoki cypress bonsai, Japanese maple bonsai 2 & Alder bonsai. Cheeky Pea, Sweetwater cactus terrarium. PILOT, Larkin set – Cactus planter. || Architecture: The Domineaux Effect, Weathered Greenhouse. Midnight Melody, Windmill & Water tower. || Furniture: Frog’s Garden, Junk flower stand. Apple Fall, Autumn ladder. PILOT, Larkin set – Hanging chairs.

Inside, the shed is, by definition, a one room structure that is usually used for storage. It’s not a house per se, but since I prefer small low-prim structures rather than large and imposing ones, it is perfect for me. I treat houses as another garden decoration most of the time anyway, with furniture coming as an extra, but since I’ve collected a few nice items over the last few months, which are still waiting to be used, I thought it was a good time to spread them around.

[ Items ] Nature: Terrashop (World of Wood), Small red poinsettia with gold edges. || Furniture: lame, Caroline’s chair – script. Apple Fall, Japanese Scroll No. 1. Cheeky Pea & PILOT, Backyard cinema table. what next, Charlotte Woodburning stove & (part of) Chocolatier drinks tray. Art Dummy!, For winter contemplation. Cheeky Pea, Sweetwater rug, Painter’s armchair & Kaleidoscope dreamcatcher. Zigana, Side table – blue.

[ Additional items ] Nature: After taking this picture I added two more potted plants from XED Design: a Dracaena and a Spider plant; they don’t show up in the picture though, since it was taken before that. || Furniture: Apple Fall, Butterfly art. PILOT, Belted shelf & Magon art collection. The Domineaux Effect, Stack of books. Cheeky Pea, Hemmingway typewriter (no typo on my part, that’s the originally given name) & Tegan’s pallet bed. Zigana, Workbench blue (rare The Arcade Winter gatcha). ionic, Memories collector. LISP, Anna floor lamp. Bazar, Arizona black board. what next, Mayfair trunk – London.

Tomorrow, I’ll show you the wetlands, and the day after tomorrow, the woodland.