Shopping for and Dressing your Mesh Body!
Alright so one of the most common questions I get from new mesh body owners is ‘how do I dress this thing??’. It’s a good question, and unless you’re a nudist (no judgement here) then you’ll probably have to work this one out. Basically there are three options of clothing for mesh bodies:
1) Standard Mesh – This is the standard sizing mesh clothing you find in most stores. You will most likely find that your body will ‘break through’ the standard mesh because the mesh body *isn’t* the same shape as the standard SL Avatar (and because most standard SL avatars break through them anyway), so this is where your Alpha HUD becomes necessary (for alpha, see Mesh Bodies 101).
2) Applier Clothing – If you’ve ever used lolas, slink hands/feet, phat azz or any other type of mesh body attachment, you’ll know what an applier is. It’s basically a small HUD that ‘paints’ the clothing on the Mesh Attachment/Mesh Body. Now before you go all ‘they look horrible!’ on me, know this – Mesh bodies usually have several clothing layers. These clothing layers sit away from the body (like a bubble around it). What this means is that the clothing doesn’t look pasted on, and especially on top/pant layers, it sits away from the body (especially in the breast area) to make it look like normal clothing! Also know that Mesh Body layers can accept far higher resolution textures than a standard SL Avatar can, so the quality is far, far higher.
3) Fitmesh for Mesh Bodies – This is a relatively new thing, and basically it’s a mesh clothing item that is made to fit your Mesh Body perfectly. Because it’s fitmesh, if you make your body shape have bigger breasts, bigger butt or whatever, the clothing will move WITH the sliders you use to edit your body. This type of mesh making is quite new, so be prepared to demo any items before you buy them. Right now many designers are making Fitmesh for certain mesh bodies (ie. Blueberry makes fitmesh clothing for Belleza, Slink and Maitreya), but many Mesh Body makers aren’t sharing the necessary 3d files with designers that is required to make these clothing items fit seamlessly (which is fair enough but at the same time frustrating). This means that many designers are doing the best they can to get as close a fit as possible, but it’s far from perfect, so always demo items that claim to be fitmesh for your mesh body!
So let’s focus on applier clothing and fitmesh for mesh bodies! Here the two are side by side (Fitmesh for Belleza is first, then Applier clothing). You can see with my applier outfit, the cute little romper from elymode, I’ve got both my top and bottom clothing layers active on my Belleza body, and I’ve left the Applier HUD from elymode there for you to see. To apply this, I simply clicked the first option on the HUD, which indicates it will apply both top and bottom, by hitting the word ‘clothing’ (which tells it I want it on the clothing layer).
From time to time you may experience issues with appliers that don’t seem to apply, if this happens, toggle the layer you’re applying it to (in my case, the clothing upper and lower layers) On and Off a few times, this should fix the issue. If it doesn’t, check that you’re using the correct applier (ie. a Belleza Applier for a Belleza Mesh Body) or that if you’re using Omega, you’ve installed it into the body correctly (or are wearing the relay, for Maitreya users).
So there you go, you can now dress your Mesh Body! If you’re not sure where to buy some fitmesh or applier clothes, check out my Designers List HERE.
One big hurdle people struggle with when it comes to mesh bodies, is that fact that whilst you can (of course) save an outfit in your viewer, you can’t ‘save’ the applier clothing or your alpha settings for the outfit you’re saving. This means that when you go to apply that outfit again, you will need to reapply any applier clothing that you may have since changed, and reconfigure your alpha settings on your HUD to suit that outfit (assuming you’ve changed them in the meantime).
The most efficient way I’ve found to save outfits is the tried and true method of opening appliers the outfit requires (having the huds on my screen) and leaving them there when saving my outfit. That way, at the very least, when I put my outfit on, my appliers are already on my screen ready for me to press them and get going 🙂
With most mesh bodies, you now also have the option of ‘saving’ an applier outfit in the HUD. To save, with most bodies, just click on one of the ‘Save’ buttons. This will save the appliers you’re wearing for you.
With Maitreya, there is another option, and whilst I’m leaving this tutorial here, I do highly recommend against doing it – simply because in the event of a body update, you’re going to lose it all anyway (as the old copies you’ve saved will be of the old version of the body and thus will cause issues). For the curious however, here it is:
Maitreya actually has a work-around for this (although of course, this method has it’s own drawbacks, but such is technology my friends). You can actually descript the Maitreya body, which for the less technologically inclined of us out there, means you can remove all the parts that make the mesh respond to the HUD/Appliers etc. This means that the mesh body then comes ‘frozen’ in the state it was in when you removed the scripts (in terms of alphas/appliers worn on it etc).
Now I know what you’re thinking – why would I want to do that?? Well, the answer (in short) is that you’d want to do this because it enables you to save the body and make ‘outfits’ that don’t require fiddling with at a later date to get them working! Of course, this requires making a copy of the Maitreya body for each outfit, and it means you can’t edit that version of the body out there later, but for those of us who need a few simple outfits we know will work straight away, it’s a very, very handy thing to have.
So how do you do it?
Step 1: Make a copy of the Maitreya body in your Inventory (Always make copies, but if you stuff it up, go to the store and get it redelivered).
Step 2: Wear the new copy of the body and set your outfit up the way you want it to look. This means top to toe – Nail colour, skin, alphas, apply applier clothing… you won’t be able to change it later for this version of the body so do it now!:
Step 3: Press the ‘Kill all scripts’ button on the HUD.
Step 4: Save your outfit like you normally would. In my case you can see I’m wearing a mesh top, I have some alpha enabled on my breasts and I have applier jeans on. Because I’ve removed scripts from my body, when I put this version of my body back on at a later date (by wearing the outfit) the jeans and alphas will still be exactly like this!
Now be aware that this method WILL be a pain in the butt when the body gets updated because you’ll need to do it all again, but I just give the information so you can make your choices 🙂
I hope you found this tutorial useful. If you have any suggestions for future tutorials, I’d love to hear them, just comment below and don’t forget to follow my blog to see future tutorials.