I love making CC, and know that some people really want to learn but they can't find a tutorial... especially for TSR Workshop.
I have used CTU as well as the Workshop, but I find that the Workshop is simpler.
I learned a lot by just fooling around with different settings and stuff. But I know that lots of people don't like to experiment, and so that's why I wrote this tutorial.
What this tutorial will teach you: Masks? Overlays? Textures? What does that all mean? You'll be able to explain and edit all of these things once this tutorial is over!
What this tutorial will not teach you: Meshing and hair retexturing. I've only worked with meshes once and I hated it!
So first open up the Workshop.
1: Click this if you want to start a new project,
2: Or click this if you want to open up an old project from before.
3: This is a reminder of stuff you've recently done. You can't click on it, though. So it's kind of useless :P
Once you click on 'New Project', you'll be directed to this window.
1: This holds clothing from all over the game. It even includes things that are exclusive to certain careers.
2: Costume makeup, eyeliner, freckles, birthmarks and even tattoos are in this section. My favorite thing to make is makeup, so this is the category I choose the most.
3: Hair is extremely complicated to make or retexture. That's a different tutorial!
4: Gloves, socks, earrings, bracelets, you can make some pretty cool jewelry in here.
5: Objects! Tables, lights, decorations, chairs.
6: Plants, bushes, windows and doors.
7: This is where you can import CC that other people have made. Maybe you see a shirt that you like, but it has that ugly shadow on the back.
Editing existing CC is alright if it's just for you, but you need an artist's permission if you want to upload it.
On the left is a menu where you can select the category and type of stuff you want to edit.
Be sure to pick something that is closest to what you want to make.
1: I'm picking the feline mask, because I can clearly see where everything is on the face. You'll understand a little bit more later
1: Now enter the project name. You'll be the only one that sees this, so you can fill in anything here. Make it easy to remember, though.
2: This is what everybody else sees. Again, you can call it whatever you want, but I like using the little template that I created. Example:
Sparkles Costume Makeup by Spychip
1: At the top are three buttons that control the view of the model.
2: And here we have the lovely model that is wearing your CC. The model can me female or male; if the CC you selected would only fit on a male sim, then you’re getting a male model and vice versa.
3: This is the Project tab. This holds all the info on the type of CC you are making. I’ll talk more about this in a minute.
4: This window is where you can view all of the info in the Project tab.
This is the basic data. Here you can see the project name, and you can make it available for multiple genders/age groups in the game.
Keep in mind: If you make, say, an eyeshadow that fits an adult, it won’t completely match up to a child’s face. It will have gaps.
This is where you set the type of things you’re making. Is it clothing that fits on the body? Or is it an accessory? What section does it belong in?
Pfft! Look at all those selections! This is under the Clothing Type tab. Here you can edit even further what your CC is.
Ah! Even more choices! This is where you decide for what outfits you want it to show up. Is it exclusively a formal item? Or can it be used for swimwear, too?
And finally, the choices come to an end. You can edit the launcher thumbnail now; the picture that shows up while they’re installing it. You can skip over this, though. It’s not too important.
And since we’re done with the Project tab, we’re moving on to the Textures tab.
1: This is the overlay. This controls where everything goes on the sim. Overlays are supposed to always be light grey or white. If they are any other color, then the game won’t let you recolor them. Some people make their overlays too dark and so no matter how bright you make the color in-game, it will always turn out really dark.
If you accidentally make your overlay too dark, don’t worry! Just bump up the brightness and it will be fine!
2: This is the Specular. This is how shiny your thing is. I never bother to mess with speculars, but you can if you want to.
3: This is the Mask. The mask always has a black background with other colors around it. This tells you where each color channel goes. You know how on sims you have up to four different colors to change? This tells the game where each of those channels are. But what if you want to have just one color channel? Well then make the whole thing one color. Don’t worry about the black background.
However, you can’t just plop down random colors. The colors are predetermined, but they are different for every project.
Makeup: Red is the first channel, yellow is the second, and pink is the last. Fourth channels are hard to create and so I won’t explain them here.
Clothing: Red is still the first, but now blue is the second and green is the third.
I accidentally added the 1 in this picture….. sorry!
2: These are Tints. Do you sort of have an idea of what they do?
They are part of the masks. Here, you can enable (or disable) different color channels. If you only have one channel in the mask, more options to edit color are still available in-game unless you edit the Tints.
You see how some are labeled as true and some false? The false tints don’t show up in-game or on the CC.
If you only have one channel (red), then check all of these as false except for the first. Clear as mud?
Here is the Textures dropdown menu. You know how on the game when you select something there are always two or three different, pre-colored options? This is how you make/delete them.
This is so you can go, ‘You know, I’d like to make one more version just to show people all about it,’
But, if you only want one Texture, then be sure to delete all others. Because if you’ve edited one texture and made it look pretty, all of the others will still be showing the feline mask. Or whatever it is you started with.
To do this, select a texture and then click on that other menu just to the right, the one with a piece of paper on it.
Yay! Now it’s time to edit! Click on the overlay and hit edit.
1: Here is the overlay, in a zoomed-up view.
2: Export the overlay to somewhere easy-to-access, like your desktop. And name it something like:
It will save as a .dds file.
Now, to open the .dds file, you’ll need a special image editor. I have four products to recommend:
Adobe Photoshop (costs money, but it’s great to use if you already have it)
Corel (like Photoshop, it costs money. But you can get a one-month free trial if you just want to try making CC.
Paint.net (Free, but it’s a little annoying. It’s not as powerful as Photoshop or Corel)
GIMP (GIMP is great, but it’s a pain in the neck to install the .dds plugin. I have a tutorial on my blog here: )
So once you have a (working) photo editor, start it up and open the overlay.
I’m using GIMP right now.
1: This is your toolbox. You can find all of your tools in here.
2: This is your image… obviously xD
3: And here is your Layers window. Create a new layer and draw your design on top of it.
(I’m keeping the feline mask as a background because then you can see easily where everything is. The eyes, the nose, etc.)
1: And this is my final product!
2: Delete the underlying image so that it’s only the new design on top. If you have more than one layer, merge them all now and save the image.
1: Back in the Workshop, edit the overlay and
2: Import the new, improved .dds.
1: Woot! And now the model is wearing your stuff! But, the mask is still set for the feline makeup.
2: So go ahead and export the mask, too.
1: So back in GIMP (or whatever you’re using) we open up the mask. I want each dot to be a different color, so instead of making the whole thing red, I’m going to have to work the mask a little bit.
1: But instead of having to guess exactly where every little dot is, I’m going to open the image as a layer.
1: So I completely color the mask in black,
1: And I color in the dots. I merge the images and go back to the Workshop,
1: Yay! So now you can see how the game responds to color masks.
2: And now the thumbnail for the mask has been updated to yours.
1: I don’t really like the tiger colors, so I change the tints to look like this. And since I still have the same amount of tints now as I did when I started, I don’t need to change those.
So to get the CC out of the Workshop and into your game, click File > Export > .sims3pack
Fill in your creator details and that’s it! (I blurred out my info for obvious reasons xD )
Then find your .sims3pack file and double-click to install. Then just follow the on-screen prompts!
Congratulations! Hopefully you just made some awesome CC!
If you have any questions, then don’t hesitate to ask me!
Edit: I was reminded that custom content clothing needs different meshes for different age groups. Say, if you make a mesh for a young adult it will not look good on a child, the kid will be look mutated.
It's the same thing for hair, so you'll need to get a meshing tutorial to figure that all out.