Although it wasnâ€™t specifically stated, one of my goals with this Winter Formalwear 2010 series was to present formal suits in a variety of styles, with little if any overlap. And so, having previously featured a tuxedo from RFyre, I found myself hesitating at first to include this beautiful suit from Lapointe Bastchild. However, since Raven Pennyfeatherâ€™s Wintertide tux was not specifically gothic in tone or execution, I felt justified in including another formal suit with distinctly gothic styling and detailing. Paul Lapointeâ€™s Modern Black Ornate Tuxedo is outrageously luxurious, with a profusion of embellishments that catch the eye and intrigue the soul.
The construction of the suit is classic, even traditionalâ€”youâ€™ll find no floating flexi coattails, bat-wing cape or other, more outrÃ© accessories here: just jacket, vest, shirt and pants. But lo, how much greater is the whole than the apparent sum of the parts! The pants have crisp prim cuffs; the shirt is textured with narrow, delicate pleats; andÂ the vest is an orgy of baroque vines. All very fine and handsome so far, certainly, although not necessarily beyond the pale.
But the jacketâ€”oh, the jacket! The jacket here is the real piÃ¨ce de rÃ©sistance. TheÂ sculpted cuffs, so much more than a realistic finishing touch, are studded withÂ decorative elements of shining wrought metal and sparkling gemstones. If anything, theÂ compound neckpiece (jacket lapels, shirt collar and necktie) is even more elaborate and beautiful. Three different versions of the neckpiece are included: one conventionally moddable, another no-mod but resize scripted, and a third with different proportions, for avatars with wider necks.
My one reservation regarding this suit, and the one caveat I offer for your consideration, is that this compound neckpiece leaves the suit somewhat less flexible that one might wish. The shirt is nicely detailed, but it canâ€™t really be wornÂ without the jacket, as its collar is linked to the jacket lapels. The jacket canâ€™t easily be worn with another shirt, as its lapels are linked to the shirt collar and tie. It would certainly be possible achieve a custom fit and look by modifying the non-scripted lapels/collar/tie assembly to hide or remove the undesired elements, but I did not attempt that bit of non-trivial editing for this feature.
Nine color combinations are available; Ruby/Cream/Black Shirt is shown here. L$599 each.
Such an exceptional suit calls for exceptional footwear. In keeping with the suitâ€™s overall theme, I am wearing L&Bâ€™sÂ Gothic Loafers (part of the Couture Dress Shoes line), also by Paul Lapointe. These are terrifically dressy shoes, with a profile thatâ€™s low, sleek and elegant. The uppers are textured in gently gleaming, burnished leather, not quite black but a deep, profound gun-metal grey, with a striking snakeskin â€œbeltâ€ across the instep. AÂ trio of decorative elements studs this belt: a central delicate silver fleur-de-lis, flanked on either side by a pair of bas-relief skulls, cast in metal but seeming intricately carved. Should you happen to inspect the sole, youâ€™ll find realistic scuffing and a tooled â€œLBâ€ logo. I do so love little details like this! Two different shoe builds are included, one with invisiprims for Viewer 1.x, the other with transparent alpha-channel â€œsocksâ€ for Viewer 2.x. L$399 a pair; several other foundationally similar but differently decorated styles are also available.
All available at Lapointe & Bastchild.