Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Turning a Box into a Home


Second Life® (SL) became a part of my days at a time of unwelcome changes, both personal and professional. The changes stirring my Real Life (RL), and the resulting financial uncertainty, prompted me not to spend RL money in SL. So, I created a Free account and paid for everything inworld with money generated by my inworld store (yes, I co-owned a clothing store for a while).

Eight years after setting foot in this mysteriously captivating virtual world, my SL life crumbled to pieces. I won’t mention the reasons why because there was another person involved. About a year ago, I was homeless (how dramatic) and had close to no money in SL.

While I was distracted with my pain, unexpectedly and in an instant, my SL life (and my RL as well) took a turn. Someone listened and cared. That changed everything and I decided it was time to enjoy SL again. In the meantime, my financial RL had stabilized and I upgraded to a Premium account. I got a house (one of the perks), and I had someone special to share it with.

The funny thing is that I never really thought much about the Linden Homes. Everyone kept saying how ugly they were and how they allowed for only a very small amount of prims. It didn't matter. I had years of training in managing the biggest amount of objects for the least amount of prims, and a lot of determination. I rolled-up my sleeves and got to work.

When one thinks of a Linden Home, the wow-factor is non-existent, true. I had even heard someone refer to living in a Linden Home as living in the projects.

Well, this very expression prompted me to show you that I have a pretty nice life in SL’s projects!

My house is a two-floor box with a small veranda. Next to the entrance door, there’s a covered area that includes a little pond. This is my immense kingdom, 512 square meters and 175 prims, recently upgraded from the initial 117.


The exterior of the house is quite interesting but unusable. The door doesn't stay open and the windows cannot be opened either. Perhaps if the building had a sliding window we could control, overlooking the pond, more residents would lounge in those areas of their residences. I decided to leave it as is.

Lower Floor

The interior lower floor started off as a very traditional and predictable living-room. I quickly realized I’d have a problem though. Mesh furniture is tiny and Linden Homes are still built in the old mind frame of hugeness. Adding to that, the relentless prim count was tyrannical. 

So, the living-room disappeared and an interior garden took its place (notice the ugly Linden fireplace; more remarks about it below).

Note: The extra wall at the back is no mod... So, I couldn't play with the prims. But it does work well there. It makes the huge area look smaller. This means I don't need a lot of prims to decorate it further.

The corner underneath the stairs would be a great writing room. I tried several options but it just didn't make any sense to have the writing room there now that the lower floor had become a semi-exterior area.

I’m not a Buddhist but Buddha has had a place in my life ever since I was a child (long story, not the right time to tell it). So, the Buddha took residence there.

Note: I played with tones, matching the different elements, and added light here and there to the objects to give everything a feeling of warmth.

Upper Floor

This corner became the bedroom from the get-go. Not much has been changed and I think not much will change. Its stability is kind of symbolic, actually. And I’ll leave it at that!

Note: The pink pile of boxes in the corner doubles as a Q&A chatterbox. Prims saved.

Challenge number one. I have always had a fireplace in my SL home(s). The Linden Home proved to be a challenge though. It comes with a terribly ugly round shiny fireplace located in a corner of the lower floor. I can’t move it or delete it. I considered somehow covering it which would cost me a few prims if I wanted to do it nicely. So, I gave up on that idea and just embraced it.

Challenge number two. Where could I have a nice fireplace? Next to the door to the veranda? Across the small corridor? No, nope, nope... So, it ended up here, in this otherwise lost corner. I think it works.

Note: A house without animals is not a home for me, so I spared a number of prims to have a fox, a raccoon, a Siamese cat and a black cat. I also paid close attention to details. A book here, a slice of pie on a plate, an open notebook. Well-spent prims. They make everything look "lived in".

The upper floor was an open area. I decided to add a wall and that created an extra room. A see-through mesh wall with an entrance made the room feel cozy. Plenty of books, and words, and colors did the rest.

Note: I fiddled with the transparency %, darkening it a bit.


Finally, the veranda. I used a pergola to cover the whole veranda, the same see-through mesh wall (also present in the lower floor as a divider to the interior garden), a C-shaped prim to darken the sides, and I had a pleasant environment where I could place a tempting hot-water tub. 

Note: The C-shaped prim was hollowed, cut-pathed, and set to 40% transparency over black. The butterflies add movement and color.


Linden Homes are a bit of a challenge. Their build is somewhat crooked. The windows are not aligned. It’s not easy to add walls or hide parts of the house we’d like to eliminate. However, if we think out of the box (pun intended), they do work.

The boxy house feels welcoming and warm, and is now a home I share with someone very special.

Note: I still have 40+ prims available for seasonal decorations! 

Pretty awesome for the ugly, sleazy projects, wouldn't you say?

No comments:

Post a Comment