One of my favorite things that happens in SL (not often, butÂ once in a while) is when a designer I’ve never heard of IMs me out of the blue and says, “Hey, I don’t know if you’re familiar with my work, but here’s what I do, won’t you take a look?”Â To me, this is an opportunity for discovery that feels a lot more personal and serendipitous than browsing through the New Releases forum for promising announcements…although I do that, too!Â So when an IM popped up from Raindrop Drinkwater a while back, I was happy to take a break from sorting my inventory (ugh) and chat for a bit.Â We had a delightful conversation touching on her design work, her shop A2Nz (Alsace to New Zealand), which she runs with Abyssia Otoro,Â and I don’t know how many other topics, and I’m pleased to share a few of her newer designs with you.Â The ensemble you see here, called “Elsasser: Hansi”, is an Alsacian formal suit, traditionally worn for significant events such as weddings and balls.Â It includes a white dress shirt, black trousers, jacket-layer red vest (both alone and with the jacket, as shown here), prim tie with collar (oneÂ to wear with the jacket, one to wear with the shirt alone), and a sculpted hat.Â Raindrop mentioned that she had paid special attention to the shading of the jacket and of the trousers, and the effort really does show.
Both jacket and vest feature double rows of shiny brass buttons, so when worn together the combination is quite striking.Â The vest alone commands attention with its strong, clear red color.Â Adding the jacket subdues this somewhat and allows the crisp white of the shirt and collar to stand out.Â Both jacket and vest have shimmering hand-painted fabric textures, with natural shadows under the lapels.Â The shiny satin of the vest backing is particularly effective.Â The dark trousers aren’t just a mass of shadowy black–you can make out the fine details of the fly, side seams,Â and back pockets.
The bright white dress shirtÂ is equally well detailed, with simple but attractive buttons and subtle shading defining the placket and cuffs.Â Note that the prim collarÂ worn with the shirt alone is all white, while the second collar, provided for wear with the jacket, is built with nested collars in white and black, matching the layering of shirt under jacket.
The crowning touch, as it were, is the sculpted prim hat.Â Textured to resemble wool felt, with a satin ribbon, this is no afterthought but an integral part of the outfit’s authentic look.Â All permissions are Mod / Copy / No Transfer.Â The “Elsasser: Hansi” formal suit is priced at L$400.
Although it’s not part of the “Hansi” outfit, I also want to mention Raindrop’s sculpted unisex “Outback Hat.”Â Beautifully textured in brown suede, it’s perfect for a weekend camping trip.Â The pictures here show it from slightly different angles, in different lighting conditions, the better for you to admire the impressive texture work.Â Permissions are Mod / Copy / No Transfer.Â Available for just L$50.
All designs available at A2NZÂ (Ufeus 36, 36, 37).