Who amongst us hasn’t experienced those first moments of contemplation after loot drops: weighing whether or not to spend a precious weekly roll on a particular item? Yeah, I’m sure some of you do the whole compare stats thing, but the moment I’m really talking about here is when you try the piece on. You rotate your character around to see if the item makes you look cool. Maybe you dye it to see if it has potential. If there was any question about it, yes, I’m that asshole that makes you wait for loot because I spend so much time thinking about whether or not I want it. But let me tell you- the fastest I’ve ever made a decision is when I first saw the Ivalician Arithmetician Robe drop. That was a hard NOPE, and I hit pass faster than a salesman hits the top of a car during his sales pitch!
What wasn’t to love about this top? Well, a lot as a matter of fact. Aside from the typical con of it not being dyeable, here we have a very bulky chestpiece design that was literally a triangle. I’m all about having a multitude of silhouettes to choose from- but at no point do I ever recall anyone asking to look like a lampshade. On top of that, the top was essentially the mullet of chest pieces: business in the front, party in the back. Spin your character around to find what, you anticipated to be a full on tunic, is actually just an apron that’s leaving your tush hanging out in the breeze.
When I told a friend of mine what item I had chosen to feature this month I was met with laughter and asked, “How can you possibly save a top like that?” With difficulty, my friend. But this isn’t my first rodeo taking what, at first glance, looks like a crap-shoot of an item, and salvaging it into some pretty nice looking glamours. If we’ve learned anything here its: a. I really like wine, and b. I refuse to shy away from difficult glam pieces. Who knows- maybe this piece really is a diamond in the rough… Once you get past all that really rough looking rough.
THE PECULIAR HERBOLOGIST
Feeling a little Pomona Sprout from Harry Potter vibe here? Good, I’m glad. Now while there won’t be any repotting of Mandrakes happening here, we will be replicating the very earthy feel that much of the gear from Rabanastre had. Keep the overall details quite minimal or very small- almost like an Easter egg: for example, in the way the Mandragora Choker just barely peeks out from behind the collar.
A good way to push back against the off-putting shape of the chest piece is to, essentially, just complete it. Not as many people would loathe this item stylistically if it was just a full-on robe. For this look, the Spring Skirt came to the rescue by rounding out the back half of the outfit. This makes the overall shape of the garment more visually appealing by changing it from a one-dimensional triangle to more of a conal look. Using a large hat is also a great way of keeping this look from appearing so bottom heavy. While there are certainly a number of wide-brimmed, pointy hats to choose from that are more all-caster inclusive, I just couldn’t resist the charm of the Anemos Seventh Hell Petasos. It’s delightfully dilapidated and fits in perfectly with the rather rustic tone of the whole look.
Now I know what you’re going to say- “Ved, lalafells practically look good in everything, so that’s basically cheating.” I mean, you’re not wrong. I can’t help that my people are undeniably precious whether you put them in a funny leather cone or in sleek, sophisticated armor. But I see your point, so we’ll raise the height bar a tad.
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I know at first a lot of us viewed the fact that this apron was backless as a major con, myself included. But the more I looked at this leather flap of a chestpiece, the more I viewed it as an opportunity. It’s common as healers and casters for us to be given long robes and tunic-style tops that offer so much coverage that pants just become a bit of an afterthought. I’m talking to the point where people just don’t even bother to glam them because you see so little of them. Well, unless you’re jumping down from an unreasonably high height in raids – to the point your robe flies up in front of your face – revealing your horribly mismatched pants for all the alliance to see. How embarrassing…
What I’m getting at here is that this allows us a chance to really play around with the different silhouettes and patterns these, often forgotten, leg slot items have. After all, the back half of your glamour should be just as visually interesting as the front. To achieve this, we chose to work with the Holy Rainbow Sarouel of Casting in its undyed form. This pair of breeches fall within the same cool-toned color story the fabric of the top has, while the thick vertical stripes help combat the odd shape of the top by elongating the legs.
While the last glamour slightly downplayed the ruffle, this glamour not only embraces it, but also pulls that particular detail elsewhere in the glam. The Gyuki Leather Halfgloves of Striking also have small ruffled details encircling the wrist, as well as also being adorned with buckles that we see in the chest piece, pants, and shoes. Items like that are a boon and help bring all the pieces into one well done, cohesive glamour.
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THE AIR MECHANIC
Get a load of this Big Boi! Is it a caster? Is it an armorer? Maybe it’s both! Whether it’s a healer completely decked out in plate or a tank wearing a frilly dress- I get a kick out of glamours that make you question at a glance what particular job a person is playing, without cheating and inspecting them. Surprisingly, this chestpiece has the capability to do just that.
When I first sat down and really started playing around with this top, I was reminded of the level 50 Armorer’s Gown. It has a similar billowy structure to the fabric and a hard leather apron at its front. I wanted to treat the Ivalician Arithmetician Robe in a similar fashion as I would that crafting top, and create a glamour more reminiscent of a labor worker, as opposed to a mage. To do that, we utilized the Sky Pirate Cap of Casting– a delightful flappy-eared hat with goggles resting right on the forehead. From there it’s just a matter of using combinations of metals and hard-looking leathers, as opposed to fabrics and items with dainty details, to make sure the glamour maintains its grit.
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What started off as, quite possibly, one of the most hideous chest pieces in game, has now become a little less eye-twitch inducing. Always keep in mind that, while not every glamour item in this game will be your cup of tea, there are ways to work with them to make them more appealing. But if all else fails, you could always rent out your services as a lampshade for a friend who wants to cozy up at night with a good book.