SL for Nowt

Living a digital life with empty pockets

The fast-track guide to non-newbieness for girls (1 of 3)

EDIT (January 2009) – OK, well since writing this post the new default ‘newbie’ avatars have got a lot better. You don’t start out with the ‘Ruth’ avatar that Roxie did, in this post! But despite those much better-looking avatars, you still are a newbie, and I’m afraid that people will still regard you as one when you’re wearing any of those avatars. However, one of the things I am always harping on about (*g*) is ‘mixing and matching’. There are a few nice items of clothing in the default newbie avatars (you actually have all the avatars in the Library folder of your inventory, so take a look around there) and the shoes are good basics. So don’t be afraid to use mix some of those items with the items you’ll be grabbing in the course of reading this post.

OK, I’ve been away for a while, but I return with a humdinger of a posting series: the fast-track guide to non-newbieness. The first three of these posts will be for the girls, but guys you just have to hang on a couple of days and there’ll be posts for you, too.

So, girls. You’ve completed Orientation Island. You’ve done all the tutorials, you know how to fly and walk and buy stuff (even if you don’t have any money yet) and you finally teleport onto the mainland.

Oh. My. God. Everyone looks gorgeous! Why don’t you look like that? Slowly, you realise that eek! you look like a newbie! You really look like a newbie! Your hair’s AWFUL! Your shoes are crap! You wanna stop looking like that as fast as you can! So you frantically start searching for free stuff, only to find yourself in a load of horrible freebie malls filled with horrible clothes. Maybe you even get griefed at a telehub.

Never fear, Mar is here. Behind the cut is part one of my three-part ‘look good fast’ guide, and it will cost you not one single penny. Or Linden. Whatever. *g*

Follow me, girls. I’ll have you looking great in less than an hour.

The things that you need are: a shape, a skin, some eyes, some hair, some clothes, some shoes, and an animation override (AO) to get rid of that horrible ‘duck walk’. We’re going to get you all of that (and more) by whizzing you on a quick eight-store tour of the Second Life Grid.

First stop, a shape. This is your body framework, and while the default female shape isn’t all that bad, it’s not very curvy. Yes, you can edit it, as you were shown on Orientation Island (OI), but there are some lovely free shapes out there that people have already made, so we’re going to grab some of those.

Clicking the links that I give in this post will send you to a Second Life version of Google Maps. As long as you’re logged in-world, if you then click the ‘teleport now’ button, then return to your SL client, you should see a new window that gives you the option to teleport to that place. If you don’t see directly in front of you whatever is in the screenshot, you will see a red arrow and a red beam going up into the sky. Follow that arrow toward the beam, and you’ll find the place I’m linking you to.

EDIT: Sometimes, (which is the site that manages that ‘Google Maps’ link thingy that opens the landmarks in your SL viewer) stops working for a while. If that happens, and clicking on a link here doesn’t open the little landmark window in your viewer, then copy the link location from the page (depending on your browser, that will usually involve right-clicking and selecting ‘copy link location’ or ‘copy shortcut’) and then paste the link into chat (preferably while you’re not standing in the middle of a group of people!) Then, open your Chat History in the viewer, and click the link there. That should open up the landmark window for you.

OK, before we begin, I created a new alt to show you how this all works. Say hi to Roxie!

We’re going to head, first of all, to The Free Dove, in Gallii. Now, there are all kinds of freebie temptations here, but restrain yourself. *g* You can always create a landmark here (World > Create Landmark Here) and come back to it whenever you like. For now, we’re going to just grab a few essential freebies here.

This is the scene at The Free Dove. The store’s been redecorated since I took this screenshot, but the layout is still the same. Depending on the time of day, it could be pretty crowded, and if you don’t move a step or two away from the teleport point, someone is likely to land on your head. Don’t move too far, though, because the shapes are on that table right in front of you. Can you see Roxie standing there, amid the crowd? (It’s like Where’s Wally?, isn’t it…?)

In the left corner of that table is this box. Hover your cursor over it, and you’ll see that pop-up (if you don’t see it, then View > Hover Tips > Show Tips in your SL client’s menu). Some of these boxes just require you to click on them, others require you to right-click and select ‘buy’ (you’ll be buying for 0L$, so don’t worry about payment).

The box says it’s skins, and it is. But inside it, along with the skins, is a very nice shape, called Centerfold:

We’ll be getting more hair later, but you can head over to the back of the store on your left and grab some hair from here. The Proton ponytails (arrowed, bottom) and the two newbie hair vouchers for Diversity and Gurl6 are all worth getting:

Our next port of call is for skins and eyes, and for those we’re heading to House of Zen, in Hinode Shima. When you arrive, turn around so you’re facing the big red teleport board. Click on the one that says ‘Free Items’:

Hey presto, you’ll be transported up to the freebies area:

On the wall to your left are the fabulous ‘Another Shop’ skins, created and given to the Second Life community by Eloh Eliot. There’s also the well-known CS Passport skin. Grab ’em all!

On your right are two packs of hair that you can grab, but mainly we’re here for skins and that big pack of eyes beneath the hair. Make sure you grab those:

Now we need hair. Yep, you may have grabbed some at The Free Dove, and at House of Zen, but a girl can never have too much hair! We’re now heading over to The Free Union, at Chromex. The Free Union is a big freebie and resell store, but the good thing about it is, it doesn’t rip you off like some resell stores do. If you head to the right areas, the clothes are free.

First of all, you’re going to find this place is busy. The quickest way to get around is to fly. You’ll land in one place, and need to head to another. This screenshot should guide you:

EDIT: The Free Union has had a makeover and doesn’t look like this anymore! You’ll find the hair and skins should be behind you when you arrive; if not then have a wander around. They are definitely still there. I’ll try to get an updated screenshot done sometime this week!

To your left are more free skins (might as well grab a few more; you never know which one you’ll eventually settle on):

And in front of you on the wall is some free hair. Be careful: some of these hairstyles cost money that you might not have (presuming you didn’t register payment info for your avatar). It’s only a couple of Linden dollars, but if you don’t have that, you can’t buy the hair. The two I’m going to rec to you are Bun Fun (the one that Mar’s been wearing a lot lately) and Red Run:

(Apologies for the slightly fuzzy screencap there.)

OK, now you’re going to come out of that section and turn left. You’ll see an area looking like this:

Head over there. If it’s packed and you seem to be bashing up against an invisible wall, keep trying to get in. As soon as one person leaves, you’ll be able to get in.

On the walls in here are hundreds of clothing items, and just about all of them are free. Use your camera controls (View > Camera Controls) and hold down ALT while you click on an image, then if you have a scrollwheel on your mouse, scroll to zoom in. You can examine the contents of each wall vendor. If you see even one item in the vendor that you like, click the vendor to get everything in it. You can always weed out the stuff you don’t like later. For example, I’ve asterisked a few of the tops in these vendors that I can find a use for:

OK, now you’ve probably spent half an hour in there, it’s time to chivvy along. We need to get you looking good! Now we’re going to hit Fabulously Free In Second Life, in MC East River:

On your left, grab the Jill In A Box package. By all means, grab other stuff, but I’m showing you the essentials you need. (I’ve also been fading and tinting the areas around the items you want, in an attempt to make them show up more):

On your right, grab the female skin set. More skins to choose from!

In the centre, there’s quite a bit to grab. Some of it we’re going to use later, but you might as well get it now. I’ve highlighted the basics. Left – right, they are: three packs of Calla hair, two packs of flight and stand animations from ANIMAH, Tesla’s Elise2 heels, and four more packs of skins. If you want spectacles for your avatar, you might want to grab the granny avatar just above the ANIMAH boxes: it might be an old grandma, but the specs are actually pretty good!

OK, now we head over to The Gnubie Store, in Powder Mill. Some of the items here cost 1L$, so you won’t be able to buy them until you’ve been around some money trees (see this post for all about that, but be quick: you can only pick from money trees for your first 29 days in Second Life). But there are some great freebies available here, too, and I’m going to show you some of the best.

You’ll land at the bottom of a LOT of stairs. Up you go, kiddo. The goodies are at the top:

First up, we have jewellery by Fallingwater Cellardoor. Some of this is prim jewellery, and some is on underwear layers. I’ll get to the whole layers thing in the next post, when we put Roxie’s new look together:

I grabbed this great fatpack of sweaters by Zyrra Falcone. It comes with a pair of black jeans, too:

Nyte Caligari, of Nyte & Day, has some gorgeous freebie clothes that you’ll definitely want to grab:

Upstairs on the third floor, Eloh Eliot has her new skins. Grab them all!

On the same floor, do not miss the freebies by Hyacinth Tiramisu, of Silent Sparrow. They’re some of the most beautiful hand-drawn clothes in Second Life, in my opinion:

OK, now we need to get you one more pair of shoes. Maitreya, in Glam World, had her lovely pair of Slinky Stilettoes copied and re-sold by thieves, so she’s put them out as freebies for everyone. Head over to the store and, when you rez, turn around until you’re facing the wall that says ‘footwear’ at the top. The shoes are hard to spot from a distance (in a black bag, against a black wall!) but they’re worth hunting for:

EDIT: The Maitreya shoes are no longer available, but you should find a couple of fatpacks (multiple colours) of freebie hair there at the time of my writing this edit (end of June 2008).

And now, a couple of extras. Teleport over to Crystal Gadgets, in Babeli. Go inside and either walk up the stairs, or use your camera to zoom up. You’re looking to the far end of the displays up there, for the free Radar HUD:

And finally, you need a flight feather. This will enable you to fly higher than you can normally, which is good because there are a lot of places up in the sky in Second Life!

I searched for ‘flight feather’ and got several results, but the one I chose was Flag City, in Flammarion. On the floor where you land, there’s a big box with a butterfly on it. Inside that box is your flight feather:

So, girls, we’re all set. Now all we need to do is find somewhere quiet (I suggest The Pink House, at 100Limite, which is a place where girls can open boxes and change clothes) and start getting rid of those newbie looks.

That follows in the next post, which you can find here :)


May 16, 2008 - Posted by | freebies, hair, hints and tips, jewellery, newbies, second life, shapes, shoes, skins |


  1. […] fast-track to non-newbieness for girls (2 of 3) In the first post of this series (here) I sent you whizzing around the grid to gather everything you needed to get rid of those newbie […]

    Pingback by The fast-track to non-newbieness for girls (2 of 3) « SL for Nowt | May 16, 2008 | Reply

  2. […] remember in my previous post I told you to grab the two free packs of ANIMAH animations (stand and flight) from FabFree? If you […]

    Pingback by The fast-track guide to non-newbieness for girls (3 of 3) « SL for Nowt | May 17, 2008 | Reply

  3. This is very good! I wish I’d had this during my first days – would have saved me some awkwardness at the freebie beaches!

    Comment by Katerina Kirax | May 23, 2008 | Reply

  4. Thanks, Katerina! I think what most of us want to do when we first enter SL is get rid of those newbie looks, especially when we actually leave OI and realise that hardly anybody else outside of there looks as newbish as we do!

    I’m having a harder time putting the boys’ post together (not surprising, really, but I think the men’s freebies are getting better) but it should be ready soon.

    Comment by Mar | May 23, 2008 | Reply

  5. Just an update: Fabfree has moved its headquarters here..

    Comment by Shangreloo | March 2, 2009 | Reply

  6. Ack! Thanks, Shangreloo. I changed the SLurl in the sidebar and completely forgot about this post (and the boys’ one). Now editing; thanks for the heads-up :)

    Comment by Mar | March 2, 2009 | Reply

  7. hehe, I took my first stab at making a shape even before I left OI, and managed to get it mostly right the first time. I’ve only had to make minor tweeks in my homebrew shape since, and I still wear it now.

    Comment by Firebird | May 6, 2009 | Reply

  8. I absolutely love your guide!! Just wanted to drop a huge thanks to you for writing this (not many comprehensive, yet newbie-friendly guides are out there for beginners)!


    Comment by Tessandra Y | January 7, 2010 | Reply

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