I love shoes, and even though this post isn’t about shoes, in RL I am a 10 or a 41 depends on where the shoes are made. If I go into any shoe store in the world, generally I can just ask for a 41 or a 10 and depending on the style of the shoe, it should fit me perfectly. When the saleslady comes out and tells me they don’t have it in a 10/41 but would I like to try a 9? I growl internally, because if I could fit a 9 I wouldn’t ask for a 10.
It is a great comfort to have that level of assurance no matter where you are, and a team of like minded content creators have developed that kind of security for Second Life. Minnu, Thora, Emma and Siddean, better known as LeLutka/Celoe, Surf Co./Mon Tissu and SLink have combined their skills, as well as their customer base, and by polling as many as participated come up with “Standard Sizing” for Mesh.
This concept isn’t only for the customer though, it is an idea that if other stores take on this “Standard Sizing” option, will assure their customer base that what is made in Mesh will fit their avatars in the same way as other stores they shop in that also adopt the “Standard Sizing” options. The sizes are Extra Extra Small (XXS), Extra Small (XS), Small (S), Medium (M), and Large (L).
This made many of you exhale sharply I know, but this is where it gets interesting, and very very handy. First off as a customer, the “Standard Sizing” is a broad range of fits. The thing about Mesh and how it moves with your body, is that it actually does that more than just shifting with your movement. If you are 100 tall or 20, the same pair of pants will fit you to the exact same length on your body, and it is more than that, if you fit a size S (small) you could look completely different in shape than the girl next to you also buying an S (small). There are 78 Sliders that determine your shape – I counted – and only 8 of those have an effect on your shape for Mesh. All you have to do is try and see, I mean rather than throw your hands up and scream NO NO NO NO NO! give it a try, maybe the first things you tried didn’t work for you, but don’t give up trying Demos in stores that are making Mesh. Examples of how the same fit can have different shapes HERE , HERE and HERE
Now where it benefits content creators is many ways. The first one is learning. Mesh is new to so many content creators. You may or may not have made sculpts in the past, blender/maya – or whatever 3d application you use, may be new or not to you, but either way, when you open that program as small as the screen may be, that grid space can seem very very big when empty. By downloading the “Standard Sizing” Mesh Files, you will have a model to work off in 5 different shapes from the very start. No need to do everything off Ruth, or try and make your own. Not only is this a great starting point, but its a consistent one through all your products.
On a side note lol, if you use the models in your software, even if you do not make clothes, you have a much better reference. Say you make furniture, it is a great way to see where an avatars legs will bend for a sofa, or if you are making a building, how tall your average doorway should be based on heights, there are many things you can use them for as reference.
Back to clothing though, many are going to look at the slider numbers for the Standard Sizing and know immediately that items will not fit them, the most obvious will be if your breasts are much larger. Because once you have Mesh on and the Alpha layers, your bigger breasts will look smaller, and for some thats a no go. But consider this as a starting point and as a content creator think again of RL. In RL you don’t just have size 10 bras, you have 10a, 10b,10c and so on. So if you know for a fact that you have a large enough customer base that are loyal to your brand and also have larger breasts, you could still use the Standard Sizing, but add the a,b and c options. A tad more work yes, but you will be the one that decides if it is worth it to you or not.
Other than clothing, the Standard Sizing can also work for Shape Makers. Over the years many shape makers have included System Skirt Shapes, with the Standard Sizing shapes and numbers being available to all for free, this could be something that shape makers use to include in their products, that way also assuring new customers that the shape they choose will have the ability to shop in any of the “Standard Sizing” stores.