Master Class

The nuances in the title “Master Class” were tailor made for Shenlei Flashheart (Shenlei Winkler in RL):  entrepreneur, innovator, fashion designer, and now an author.  (As a friend and as someone who curates one of Shenlei’s programs, I have to take this moment to say…well, really, to scream:  OMG SHENLEI!  CONGRATULATIONS!!!).

Shenlei is CEO of the RL company The Fashion Research Institute and also a masterful fashion designer who is hugely successful in both RL and SL.  Within six months of rezzing in 2005, she became one of the top earners in SL by successfully launching (and growing) her Prim & Proper brand of victorian fashion (now retired).  After retiring P&P, Shenlei followed up with two new successful brands:  Flash & Trash casual wear (retired), and the Debutante brand of romantic gowns (very active with a dedicated and loyal following). 

Debutante gown, as created by Shenlei Flasheart
Michele wearing a Debutante gown

On top of all of this, for more than a year, Shenlei has generously guided aspiring designers inworld by sharing her knowledge and techniques.  Along with helping the designers hone their craft, Shenlei has also helped them to launch their brands inworld, first by providing mentoring and shop space for several months (gratis) in her Shengri La sims and then by creating immersive fashion installations (each hugely attended) to showcase the young designers’ work.   

Shenlei’s help is highly structured help.  It comes in the form of well thought-out programs like The Shengri La Vintage Marketplace (an invitation-only apprenticeship program in existence for a year; I curate this); the Avatar Apparel Design Course (an inworld course, complete with structured instruction and a fully articulated course curriculum); and, now a book.  (OMG!!!)


As a writer myself, I know the thrill that comes with seeing your work published and in print.  But my printed work doesn’t include a book (one day, I hope it will…although I did complete last year’s 50,000-word count NaNoWriMo and I still marvel in astonishment at my very wonderful friend who has completed NaNoWriMo every year for the past 9 years).  The huge amount of effort that goes into writing a 50,000-word piece can never be overstated.  Let alone the fact that in the 50,000 word book “Designing Dreams,” Shenlei continues to share techniques and step-by-step guidance to help turn vision into reality for anyone with a dream, determination, commitment, desire and a willingness to make the effort. 

Truly, “Designing Dreams” is a Master class.  It’s a fashion design clinic taught by the masterfully talented and classy Shenlei Flasheart.  If you’re an aspiring inworld designer or if you want to learn fashion design from a prolific RL and SL designer, and a genuinely nice and generous soul, check out “Designing Dreams” at Amazon.

Published by Michele Hyacinth

A child in the wild blue yonder...full blooded woman with the power just to be. ~ John Haitt

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