Flexi Skirt Maker
Manual Texture Spreader

  Flexi Skirt Maker  - MANUAL - Texture Spreader

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Notecard # 6 Texture Spreader

DESCRIPTION: If you right click and edit a flexi skirt to add a texture, what you will get is the same texture strip identically for each of the flexi pieces - which is often just a tiny portion of your starting texture. What this software does is to allow you to spread the full texture image over more skirt pieces: 4 - and then repeat? 6 - and then repeat? 8 - and then repeat? or all 24 of them - just one time around (for a 24 piece skirt).

CAUTIONS: Always do the most important "Outside" of the skirt first. The outside (normal exterior) changes all skirt faces and must be done first. You can add this first texture in the normal way for the outside by just right clicking the entire skirt and changing the texture on the texture tab. Then use the software to spread it. When the Outside of the skirt is done and you are happy, you can then change just the texture itself of the skirt "bottom" or inside" to lace or another texture that adds value to your overall design. ALSO: Sometime transparency, even a little can fight with a complex skirt design. If having trouble, try to ensure no transparency and see if that fixes things.

HOW TO REACH THE TEXTURE SPREADER MENU? - Start with the main menu for the skirt maker, and choose the "Adjust" menu. In the adjust menu, near the bottom click "Texture" to get to the texture menu.

WHAT NEEDS TO BE SET to Texture Spread? While there are many possible adjustments given, you can set just one adjustment: "Hphotos" giving it a number and then press "Do Normal" to get a reaction. Hphotos means the number of Horizontal photos to take. This is because some starting values were set for you, and as you set "Hphotos" some others are calculated for you - at least for a starting point. So you only need to set "Hphotos" before "Do Normal". What "Hphotos" means is how many photos equally spaced to take of your complete beginning texture. Best to use an integer divide. Huh? If you use a 24 flexi piece skirt, set Hphotos to either 2, or 3, 4, 6, 8, 12, or 24. If you set Photo to 6 for example, your texture image will be shown over 6 skirt pieces in a row. Since your whole skirt is 24 pieces then that means that there would be 4 groups of 6 images each going around the skirt. If you choose 24, then there is only one image used for your entire skirt. Therefore you can design the whole skirt image using a single texture - to create for example a poodle skirt, or a maid skirt for example. How to design it? More on that later. But when you set "Hphotos" our software modifies the suggest repeat value and also the offsets in order to try and ensure the middle of the skirt is in front. That means that if you design your own texture, the very front of the skirt should be the exact middle of your texture.

Still confused? Try making one using the following example

1. Make a 24 strip flexi skirt using material: cone 0.7 (0.7 long)
2. Wear the skirt, adjust flex values and also xy open, x open, and y open to suit
3. For this example - select "Solid" in the "adjust" menu to create a solid cone bottom
4. When all set with the above, right click the skirt, go to the texture tab, and add your favorite texture. We suggest adding the maid texture supplied with this program. Then stop the edit.
5. Left click the skirt. On the main menu, select the "Adjust" menu. From the Adjust menu, on the lower side select the "Texture" menu
6. On the texture menu, press "Hphotos" and select 24. Asking for 24 photos means that the maid texture image will wrap around the flexi skirt once - a different photo for each piece. The front of the skirt will be the center of the texture. You need not make any other changes. Selecting "Hphotos" will cause the software to calculate horizontal offsets for you and also its repeat value - which is really the texture width for each piece.
7. Press "-Return-" to go back to the Texture menu and press "Do Normal" to spread the texture around the skirt. Now that part should be done. You will have now spread the texture around the whole skirt.
8. Returning to the texture menu, select "Face" and select "Bottom". Also on that sub menu before returning select "TxtUse" ("texture to use") option, and on the submenu, select "Lace2" - the texture that you wish to use for the bottom of the skirt. Then of course press "-Return-" to go back to the Texture menu and select "Do Normal" to put lace images at the skirt bottom.
9. Returning to the texture menu, select "Face" and select "Inside". Also on that sub menu before returning select "TxtUse" option, and on the submenu, select "Lace1" or 'txtd". Then of course press "-Return-" to go back to the Texture menu and select "Do Normal" to put lace 1 or txtd (satin) images on the skirt inside.
10. Then you are really done. If happy with the skirt, you can remove the software and save it as you have done before. If you wish to do a fine adjust and right click the skirt and go to the texture screen, the only horizontal item that you should really adjust is "Horizontal Repeats per Face". That is the item that decides how much of the photo each skirt piece uses. We DO NOT SUGGEST MODIFYING Horizontal offset, since that is done automatically by the software and might be different for each skirt piece. If you have not modified the vertical side, you of course can modify vertical repeats or vertical offsets in order to improve the image.

When the software has completed its work, you might want to right click the whole skirt and do a fine adjustment of "Horizontal Repeats". Remember that the software for horizontal repeats will just get you close, but perhaps not perfect. Before changing the value, note the suggested starting point the software gave you for horizontal repeats, since it might be close, and you might adjust too far and need to go back to it. And of course the shape and size of the original texture plus the number of skirt pieces also could make a big difference in the correct value for Horizontal Repeats. As it does say above, please do not try and adjust "Horizontal offsets" after the software is done, since that value must be set in advance or just go with the software decisions. The offset values will be different for each strip - so modifying it for the full skirt will damage the software results.

MAKING THE SKIRT? "DO Normal"? "DO Offset"?
"DO Normal" is generally the one you want to use, unless you are using lettering or complex custom textures where your setup is different. The simple answer is - use 'do normal' first and if you do not like what you see, you can then immediately press the 'do offsets' option to see if you prefer that one. What "DO Normal" does is to best align the exact center of your texture with the front of your skirt. We would believe for most applications that that is what you wish. However, what if you do lettering, and like me - made the mistake of putting the letters to show - such as "Sheri Baby" in the center of where the photo images would be.? And then also like me - you make the mistake of using an even number for "HPhotos". Why is that a problem you ask? Well then, the exact center of your texture is not in the center of a photo you are taking, but on the border. And so what would happen is that the skirt will show everything but the letters you wish. Ooops. Well, if that happens, then just use "DO Offset" and it will shift your overall image just a bit to the right - still almost in center if you have a good number of skirt pieces - but will center the photos to take pictures in the center of the photos and not at the border. In this manner, lettering can be seen.

EXAMPLE 2: For this example, instead use the texture "Sheri baby" skirt texture, but set Hphoto to "6". Then use "DO Offset" instead of the 'do normal' option. You will then see 4 groups of 6 images each .. that spell out some words for you. Note: After the texture was spread by the software, we did fine adjust the Horizontal Repeats to 0.5 to make the letters Larger.

For the rest, we suggest trying 'DO Normal' option first. The 'Do Offset" option is mostly intended for lettering or graphics in the very center of the photos taken going across the image. But of course, if you wish to see what you can get to see if you like it better, you can switch between the two to find your preference.

EXAMPLE 3: Notice for our poodle skirt, Hphoto of course was also set to 24. This was also the value used for the tropical scene skirt.

EXAMPLE 4: Notice for our profile picture skirt ('profile sample"), we set Hphoto to 8 or 12 which we thought made the face look best.

For some of the above, we at times did adjust "Horizontal repeats" a bit after the automatic software did its work to get best picture.

CONES (cylinders), BOXES, PRISMS
We found cones the easiest to work with - especially at about 24 skirt pieces per skirt. But over time, we also learned that with some adjustment, sometimes we got good results from starting with box or prism material as well - if one made a few adjustments at the end. As an example for the sample profile picture for a prism of 20 pieces using Hphotos = 10 gave an image of course one front and one back. Well, we did not like it at first. But then we used 'DO Offset' instead to show a different angle of the face, and also adjusted Horizontal Repeats, and we thought we had a very decent image. Similarly for a box 12 piece skirt only 0.5 long we also had bad results at first on the profile picture. But then we switched between 'Do Normal' and 'DO Offset' and took the best of those, and then we varied Horizontal Repeats a large amount to 0.240 I think - and again decent results. So it might be worth a bit of fine adjustment at the end to get better results.

We actually changed a lot in this kit. While the commands mostly look the same except for the new texture spreader, all of the prims inside for starting points - the 10 sample cones, the 10 sample boxes, and the 10 sample prisms are all different. What is different? We changed their starting point texture levels (we set "repeats" to "1.0" values, and "offsets" to "0" values.) and also set their rotation to 180 degrees to accommodate texture changes better. Therefore we do suggest using the new cones, boxes and prisms with the new system. If you wish to make your own custom branded cones, prisms and boxes, you can still do say, in a similar manner to last time as explained in branding . And that is ... to make your versions that you created have the same values as these. If this seems like a lot of work since you already made your own cones, boxes and prisms for your own branding, here is something you can do if you are handy. Rez each of your cones, boxes, and prisms near each other. That would be 30 prims altogether. Now combine them together. Now as a group, change both Horizontal and Vertical repeats to "1.0". Now change both Horizontal and Vertical offsets to "0.0". Now change rotation to 180 degrees. That should do it. But please check out this logic here. It should be the same as the items inside this package. Then just break that 30 prim "object" back into 30 prims and save them. Then what you did was to find the way to change them all at once. That by the way, is what I did.

Also both the main and the flex software programs are also different than the original ones - in addition to the new third added program for textures.

It is best to choose a value for Hphotos that is an integer divide number of the number of skirt pieces you are using. For example, for a 24 flexi piece skirt (25 prims in total including the center piece) we look at the number 24. We can select any of these numbers for "Hphotos" - 2, 3, 4, 6, 8, 12, or 24. Why do I say that? Let us consider an Hphotos of 6. If you multiply 6 by another integer, 4 you get 24. However, there is no integer that you can multiply by 5 in order to get to 24. If you really need an "Hphotos of "5" you might want to use a 20 flexi skirt since 4 times 5 (two integers) equals 20. You do not need to choose an integer divide value for Hphotos. But if you do not, one section will not have the full texture image and may look odd - depending on the texture. One could argue that for certain textures such as flowers or the like, such a change might not be noticed.

MORE ADJUSTMENTS FOR TEXTURES - Hwide (repeats) and Hoffsets

Yes, after selecting "Hphotos" for the number of photos to take - the software will recommend values for horizontal repeats (Hwide) and at least the horizontal starting point for offsets (Hoffsets). But you can modify either of those values if you wish before pressing "Do Normal". But we do suggest seeing what the software does first before the change, since the math to determine the starting point for offsets is not easy to follow. But you can modify either if you wish before pressing "Do Normal".

How to set Hoffsets yourself after you set Hphotos? Well this is a math answer. Sorry. :) To turn it halfway around add 0.5 to whatever number there is, plus or minus. For a quarter turn, of course add or subtract 0.25 from the current value of Hoffsets. What about one photo either way? One photo would be the math result of the number 1.0 divided by Hphotos - or the total number of photos you are asking to make. If you are asking for 8 photos (Hphotos = '8') then the width of just one photo itself would be 1/8 or 0.125. Now if you wish to move one photo or a few photos one way or the other, it does seem that adding a value of one photo width will take your center front image to the left, and subtracting one photo width from the current value of Hoffsets will send it one photo to the right. You might ask here what does "DO Offsets" do to align photo centers? It moves one half photo to the right - meaning it subtracts one half the photo width from the current value of Hoffsets.

Some software does exist for doing something similar for vertical changes going across the texture as was done for horizontal "Hphotos". The biggest difference us that for vertical changes, our software does NOT suggest values for Vwide (repeats) and Voffsets. If you use "Vphotos" to move the image vertically, you will need to set Vwide (width of texture used by each flexi strip - simiiar to "repeats") and also Voffsets. However, note - that you cannot change Hphotos and press Do Normal and expect it to stay and then do Vphotos and press Do Normal. The two work together when you press Do Normal. So if you want both to change, you must change them both at the same time before pressing Do Normal.

STOPPING Hphotos or Vphotos from operating
Set either or both to a "1.0" level and the "Do Normal" software will ignore changes.

Yes, the adjustment is there, but before you change it consider that this issue begins as being quite complex. You may recall that flexi prims (objects) used for flexi skirts begin upside down, since the part that is now upside down is now the flexi part. So the image would normally be rotated. To make life more reasonable for you, we begin the rotation value to be 180 degrees - in order to change the texture back to right side up. If you rotate something half way, and then do it again, it is now right side up. This means that as the rotation value is set for 180 degrees, this means that you can just use your normal textures right side up and they will end up right side up. But if adventurous, yes , you can change the rotation value. If you do modify the rotation value to 0 degrees, you might wish to then click "FwdRvs" selection on the "Texture" menu - right side top, and select Hrvs to move the textures to work in the opposite direction - since now the image is upside down. You can also set that rotation value to another value if you wish.


Remember - these custom textures are for flexi skirt textures and not for SL type skirts that are simply drawn on the avatars. Therefore SL skirt templates do not help and in fact will mislead you. The flexi skirt texture should fill all of the area of the image - the entire horizontal size of the image and the entire height.

This is for items where "Hphotos" is set to the same number as the number of pieces of the skirt - such as stetting Hphotos to a value of 24 when you also have a 24 flexi piece skirt (25 with the non flexi center piece). In this case, when you make the texture in your offline drawing package, you might use a texture figure that is wider than it is high - such as 1200 pixels wide by 500 high or something like that. This is because the skirt must go all the way around - which is a distance often larger than the height of the skirt. However, you will quickly find what shape of your starting image texture gives you best detail. Of course, SL will modify the size of your image as it loads, but at least you tried to get as much detail as you could.

For the full wrap around, the center of your image should become the center front of the skirt if you allow the software after pressing "Hphotos" to then set the starting point for horizontal offset for you. The far left of the texture you make ion your drawing package you can consider starting in the back of the skirt just to the right, then continuing right, past the center and then ending up on the left side of the back of the skirt. But the center of your texture should be the center of your skirt. Actually the far left and the far right of your texture will often share the same back skirt piece.

DOING WORDING on a skirt - like "Sheri Baby" example
If using cones (cylinder) skirts - our personal favorites, note that not all of the cone is visible. Just the center. Therefore if trying to spread words across a skirt you would put perhaps one letter on each skirt strip - but only in the center with space either side of it. You also need a repeat pattern - a number for "Hphotos" - that of course allows you space to spell the words you wish. You may also want a blank skirt piece before the word begins again. Let me give an example of what we just said. Since "Sheri" is 5 letters long, and we wanted a blank space after it was done, we used an "Hphotos" of 6 - to break the texture into 6 parts. that allowed for 5 letters, but also one for a blank. Yes, doing print on a skirt and then also the fine adjustment of Horizontal Repeats when done, does take effort.

CAUTION NOTE: NOTE: These comments are only valuable is your number of photos (Hphoto) is an even number and not an odd number. Odd numbers such as 5 should not have the problem.

If you place the letters in the center of the photo areas as I did in the making of Sheri Baby, then you need to make the skirt using "DO Offset" instead of "DO Normal" to ensure that the photos being used by the final texture maker center on the photo centers. That is also of course since it wants a repeat value of "6" which is an even number. You can of course cheat the system by the following method - fore even numbers for Hphoto. Since you need a blank anyway, you could make your custom wording by putting the letters not in the center of the photo areas, but on the image where the photo border lines would be - and then just use "DO Normal". I know this is confusing. But try some samples and you might see for yoruself.

Just trial and error really. Just choose a value for Hphotos that spreads out your custom texture and gives you best results.

Also - remember that textures should be ones that can repeat - where the right side of the texture flows to the left side. If not you will have a break point at the rear of the skirt or in other places where the image groupings join. Note that the "tropical pattern" is one that does have an obvious seam in the back of the skirt, since it does not repeat at that point.

black - simply solid black coloring (mostly intended as inside coloring for backing)
white - simply white coloring (mostly intended as inside coloring for backing)
trans - almost totally transparent, perhaps some usage for "bottom"
lace1 - a white lace opaque image over a 50% transparent covering
lace2 - a white lace opaque image over a 100% transparent covering
txta - red flowers, green leaves
txtb - tropical view - single landscape image
txtc - an opaque lace pattern, light gray over white
txtd - a satin type image

We likely will include the sample images we used for the maid, poodle skirt, tropical scene, sheri baby and the red flowers image as well for your to practice with.

Hope you Enjoy! - Suzie Larsen for OnP Owl and Pussycat in SL Tissela and on SL Marketplace.

Troubleshooting for Texture Spreading

Simple in the Textures menu, set either Vphotos or Hphotos to a "1.0" value to stop them form being affected by the software.

If on your custom design you added lettering in the center of where the photo images go, and also you have an even number of photos (Hphotos number) - then the normal 'DO Normal' selection may show the borders between your letters instead of your letters themselves. Try using 'Do Offset' instead of 'Do Normal'.

A few possibilities. Ensure that at least one of the two items: Hphotos or Vphotos has a value greater than one. Then the only time we have seen this was when we forgot our own rules and we had done the bottom and the insides in a different texture. When we went back to change the outer texture we were astonished to see no change - but at that time we had two problems since we had changed the others. The biggest issue was that "face" was now set to "inside" rather than the normal value at startup which is "outside". Since I was not looking inside I would not have seen any change. The second problem was that at startup we tend to use the loaded texture as "current". But after changing the bottom texture and side texture the loaded texture was no longer the maid texture that we loaded, but a lace on the inside. So in our case at least when we saw this, we were modifying a lace image on the inside while expecting the maid texture to change on the outside. The fix? Again right click the skirt and add the maid texture or the desired texture to ensure that it is the current texture. Then go into "face" option of the texture menu and ensure that "Outside" is selected. Then at least in our case, all was well and the texture did change.

In the texture menu, go to Vphotos. Set Vphotos first to "2", and then use "-1" to get it to 1 value. Then it will no longer modify things. Then edit the entire skirt and for Vertical Repeats select "1" and for Vertical Offsets choose 0. Now you can return to the texture menu and set Hphotos for the correct values that you wished and vertical photos should be turned off.

Well, you still may not be happy since there are many values one could choose. However, the main Hphotos menu now has a "more" selection that can give you more choices - such as 3, 10, 20, and higher numbers, and also allow you to change numbers by +4 or -4.

First of all, if doing lettering or other detail in the center of the photo images, as the lettering item above says - first try 'DO Offsets" to see if that fixes your issue. If not, then right click the entire skirt and do a fine adjust on "Horizontal Repeats" (but not ever Horizontal Offsets) a bit up and down to see if the image improves. Note that for very fine adjustments, that the arrows up and down move too far, and you just need to modify the values directly.

Yes, if the texture does not repeat, there will be a seam where the end joins with the beginning.

The center of the front of the skirt should always be the center of the texture image.

Yes, the outside texture must always be done first, before changing the bottom texture and inside texture since the outside texture will change ALL faces - including bottom and inside, whereas the bottom and inside texture change software will only change those surfaces.

Texture Spreading: PARTIAL IMAGE
You will get a partial image unless the Hphotos value selected is an integer divide of the number of skirt pieces. For example if the skirt pieces are 24 (the whole skirt would be 25 prims including the center piece) then your choice for Hphotos to avoid partial images would be either: 2, 3, 4, 6, 8 ,12, or 24. For example 5 will not work since there is not an integer that if you multiply it by 5 that will make 24 evenly. If you want a 5 value for Hphotos, it would be best to work with a skirt with 20 skirt pieces (21 total prims for the skirt). Values that can work with a 20 piece skirt to avoid partial images are: 2, 4, 5, 10, and 20.

The flexi skirt pieces are upside down in order to ensure their flexi portion faces down. When the software initiates, it sets the texture rotation to 180 degrees as well. Those two items should therefore cancel each other and the texture as used would be the same as the texture right side up as it normally is viewed. If the texture is shown upside down, that might mean that your rotation variable is set to 0 degrees instead of 180 degrees. To fix this, right click and edit the skirt and under the texture tab change the rotation value to 180 degrees - as it would normally be at software startup. Then in the texture menu, select "rotation" and also ensure that that value is set to 180 degrees,


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