Guidelines

Use the system folders

Linden Labs gave us a set of system folders which should cover all your sorting needs, so you might as well put them to good use. Personally I only have one other folder besides the system folders in the root directory (My Inventory), which is my personal brand’s folder.

Make subcategories and sub-subcategories

Dividing all your items between the system folders is just rough sorting. These folders are so general, they don’t allow for differentiation of items. I recommend to divide them in subcategories and sub-subcategories.

For example, take the Clothing folder. I identified four main groups—my subcategories—in this one, being:

  • Clothes
  • Clothes (Accessories, Outerwear)
  • Footwear
  • Accessories, Jewelry
Subcategories of Clothing system folder

Subcategories of Clothing

The divide between the two Clothes folders is a personal one, the second one is more focussed on clothes you’d wear outside only (like coats and gloves), while the first contains the rest. Now the first Clothes folder is the one that is quite massive, but due to the use of sub-subcategories, seems very concise.

Each type of clothing has its own sub-subcategory. I have one for pants and leggings, tops, dresses, skirts, gowns, etc. Within each of these categories I have a folder per creator, since I strongly associate particular items and styles with their creators.

I also use folder numbering to force the subcategories and some of the sub-subcategories into a certain order. Sometimes I also use letters to split a category into two, like with the Clothes folder. You can see how I did this in the image above.

After you’ve figured out your set of categories and sorted all your items, you’re bound to end up with a couple unique or weird items you really can’t (or won’t) classify. For this, simply use a folder named Others.

Use special characters and numbers

Alphabetical sorting can be your friend if you know how to use it to your advantage. Certain characters, like asterisks (*) and tildes (~) will sort above or below ‘regular’ letters (A–Z, a–z). Numbers will always sort above letters. Experiment with these characters and see how you can use them to your advantage.

Personally I use both the asterisk and tilde signs for sorting. I use the asterisk to group layers I don’t want to backup, but don’t use often. This way I literally put them aside, because I know I’m likely going to need them. The tilde I use to prefix my backup folders, since tildes always sort below letters, so I can keep the backups at the bottom of my folders and out of sight.

Use prefixes and suffixes where needed

Sometimes you will want to append a set of prefixes or suffixes to your folder names. A prefix could be the abbreviation of your store brand. Suffixes could be the number of versions/colors you have of a single product in a folder. Personally I prefer not to use prefixes, since they drive attention away from the name of the product.

With the rise of appliers I’ve started to add each available applier to my folder name. For example, I got a set of five stockings from Blacklace, which contains HUDs for Phat Azz butts and Gos Boutique feet. The name of the folder turned out like this:

Gos Stockings (Basics Classic Lace) (5)   {Gos}{Phat Azz}

Group multiple versions of the same item

Multiple colors of the same item grouped into one folder

Same mesh, different colors

This tip is especially handy for those whose favorite color is fatpack. Say you have four colors of the same mesh dress and you have each dress packed in a separate folder, each with its own alpha layer. Since they’re the same items in different colors, you can just put them in the same folder.

Once you’ve done put your items together, you can identify duplicate items (like alpha layers) and delete all but one of them. This saves inventory space and makes it easier to identify each unique part of a set. In the image above you can see I have put together two shades of Anniversary Gift and four shades of Blair, both dresses from ColdLogic.

Group components in large folders

If a single product folder contains a lot of different items, you may wish to divide its contents into logical folders. This will likely occur for large clothing or furniture sets, which consist of multiple components. It’s also handy with clothing items that have alternative styles. For example: some dresses come with a long and short skirt option, you can group the related items into folders so you can easily put the components together.

Delete unwanted items

I cannot stress it enough: you don’t have to sort what you don’t have. Delete items you know you’re not going to use anymore. If you want to keep unused items, consider backing them up instead.

Similarly you can backup different sizes of clothing. With the release of rigged mesh and the Standard Sizing package, many clothes have been released in five different sizes. Now unless you like to morph your shape regularly, you really only need one of these sizes present in your inventory. If you still have the original product box, you can use that one to keep all the unnecessary layers in or you can make your own box. Then delete all the layers you don’t need, but keep the backup.

Next: Folders →
← Previous: Introduction

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