A Second Foray Into Minimalism

A minimalist dress paper doll outfit with boots and a bag.

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As I said that last time I posted a minimalism fashion set, I love how with minimalist fashion the simplicity makes every line matter. The shapes of these garments demand discipline, because one line out of place and you can see it.

In this dresses case I almost prefer the black and white version, because you can really see the line work.

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Need  a doll for today’s clothing? All the B Pose Dolls & Clothing

A Set of Fantasy Warrior Armor

Pulpy fantasy armor for the printable paper doll with boots and a bow. Printable in color or black and white.

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Every time I draw one of these totally absurd, completely impractical over the top fantasy armor sets, I try to blame it on my love of Xena: Warrior Princess as a child. But maybe I just like drawing over the top fantasy armor sets.

Anyway, this set was actually inspired by an old paper doll set I drew back in September 2012 for Marisole Monday.

In the process of drawing this set, I did realize I have no idea how long an arrow in ratio to a bow is actually supposed to be. 

So, what do people think of today’s paper doll? I’d love to hear in the comments and if you enjoy the paper dolls, consider supporting the blog on Patreon

Need a doll to wear today’s paper doll clothing? All the A Pose Dolls & Clothing

Akiko: Space Princess!!

A space princess paper doll featuring a sci-fi inspired gown and shoes. One of hundreds of paper doll designs from paperthinpersoas.com

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I had several space princess paper dolls when I was a kid. I don’t know the exact source of the space princess obsession of the late 1980s and early 1990s, but I remember this paper doll card really well.

My grandmother often sent me paper doll cards as a child. I can recall nearly every one, which is astonishing when I think of all the things I can’t recall from my youth.

Anyway, I wanted to make a space princess paper doll and I was inspired by this gown designed by Guo Pei. Guo Pei is a Chinese fashion designer. Her work is amazingly inventive and creative. Much like Alexander McQueen (another designer I adore), Guo’s designs are often hard to imagine a person actually wearing, but that makes them all the more enchanting to me. Her designs are harder to find on the web (though perhaps not if you speak Chinese) and Vogue only has her 2016-2018 collections on their website.

I think this dress is from 2010, but I am not positive.

Anyway, that was the inspiration for the gown and everything else flowed from that. I love creating over the top hair styles, so I did one of those for Akiko and her shoes were inspired by her gown.

I did want to wish people a Happy Hanukkah to everyone who, like me, are lighting candles for the next week. I don’t have holiday plans for the blog this year. I totally forgot the holidays, so this will be a holiday free blog this year. But I have done Hanukkah paper dolls in the past. 

Let me know what you think of today’s paper doll in a comment. I’m super curious if anyone else was into Space Princesses as a child? And what do you think makes a Space Princess?

Need some more clothing for today’s paper doll? All the A Pose Dolls & Clothing

Paper Doll Collaboration November 2018 Ambulance Driver Uniform of World War 1

A paper doll coloring page featuring a World War 1 ambulance driver uniform from the Women's Motor Corps of America. A great kid's history activity or homeschooling printable for World War 1 history.

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If you’re allowed to have a favorite war (and I’m not sure you are) than my favorite war in the First World War aka The Great War aka The War to End All Wars aka The War with Way to Many Names. (Okay, confession, I invented the last one.)

First off, I love the poetry that came out of the war. To this day, I can quote Siegfried Sassoon and Wilfred Owen. In my teenage life, when I was full of angst, I adored Wilfred Owen. I still do, but I am no longer filled with quite so much angst.

So, this is all to say that today’s paper doll outfit is based on an ambulance drivers uniform of the First World War. This design was drawn from a uniform from the Women’s Motor Corps of America which you can see here and another example here. There’s also this great photo from the Library of Congress.

I was a little hesitant to use this for our military themed month, because while I though the uniform was military related when I first drew it, I have realized its not. Most of the ambulance drivers during the war were affiliated with civilian relief and welfare organizations such as the Red Cross. While nurses did serve in the Army and Navy Nursing Corps, I haven’t found much information on ambulance drivers doing the same. The Red Cross provided a great deal of the medical treatment during the war. They had female ambulance drivers, but technically they aren’t military.

But by the time I figured that out, I’d already finished the paper doll set. So, I am going to go with it anyway.

As always, Paper Doll School and Miss Missy Paper Dolls are my partners in crime when it comes to the Collaborative Paper Doll Project and I can’t wait to see what they came up with for this week so head over to their sites for that.

Need a paper doll to wear these clothes? Grab her and more clothing here.

Some Super Non-Seasonal Summery Minimalism

Minimalist fashion paper doll clothing for the B Pose printable paper dolls from PaperThinPersonas.com. A blouse, pants and bag.

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Years ago, I was asked if I had ever explored minimalism fashion for my paper dolls. Minimalism? I thought. I love layers and ruffles and over the top gowns, why on Earth would I want to explore minimalism.

But even as I thought this, I realized that was the reason to explore it. Because it is not what I am naturally drawn too. And because it is a style where one badly drawn line out of place can make a huge difference in how the finished paper doll dress looks.

There is no hiding in details in minimalist styles. They are so simple that they reveal all my messy linework and misshapen pieces.

So, when I come back to fashion minimalism, as I do on occasion (and I am today), I am reminding how critical every line is in pen and ink based art.

Every line matters when there are very few of them.

While there’s a simplicity to today’s paper doll clothing, there is also a challenge to drawing it. Sometimes the simplest things are the most difficult to illustrate. Today’s top, pants and bag were harder than they look and that, I suppose, is the whole point.

Besides, as hard as they were to draw, they were so simple to color. There’s something to be said for that as well. I went with white and blue, because I didn’t want to obscure the line work by going with black (the favored color of many minimalist designs).

If you’re not sure what minimalist fashion is, here’s Vogue’s article on it. (I really hate all the ads on the Vogue website, but the gallery there does give a good overview I think.)

And if you have a moment, think about becoming a Patron or following the blog/me on Instagram or telling a friend about it.

Need  a doll for today’s clothing? All the B Pose Dolls & Clothing

Purple Ice Skating Costume for the B Pose Ladies

Ice skating paper doll clothing with a performance dress and practice outfit and, of course, ice skates. Available to print in color or black and white for coloring.

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Ice skating, like most things that involve coordination, is not something I’m very good at. I occasionally watch other people and think, “That looks like fun.”

However, upon attempting the activity, I end up falling down a lot.

Never the less, I do like the clothing people wear to go ice skating and since I draw paper dolls, it seems to me that the clothing is the important part. Plus I thought these ice skating clothes would be a fun winter coloring page. It’s cold and dark outside, so coloring in front of a fire sounds like a pretty good time. 

So, here we have a set of practice clothing for ice skating and a performance dress. I chose purple and black, because I like purple and black.

Not being an ice skater, I can’t speak to the accuracy of today’s ice skating ensembles, but I hope I didn’t screw up too badly. Maybe someone who does ice skate can let me know in a comment.

Love the blog? Want to help off-set the cost of keeping it on line and free? Have a dollar a month to spare? Than pop over to my Patreon page and become a patron.

Need  a doll for today’s clothing? All the B Pose Dolls & Clothing

A 14th Century Surcoat With Tibbets and Headdresses

Dress up a paper doll in historically accurate 1300s clothing including a surcoat over a kirtle and two head-dresses.

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First off 14th Century week continues with today’s surcoat over a kirtle and some headdresses. Second off Happy Thanksgiving to those who celebrated yesterday.

Surcoats were worn over kirtles (I did one of those on Wednesday). Like a lot of surcoats, today’s has slits in the front that provided access to the purse worn off the girdle underneath. Think of it as the 14th century solution to pockets.

Today’s paper doll surcoat with kirtle was inspired by the Romance of Alexander from the Bodleian Library MS. Bodl. 264. There’s a bunch of different examples of this short sleeved surcoat in there, but I based this dress off the red dress in this miniature and the blue dress (and pink dress) in this miniature.

One of the interesting things about those miniatures and many others from this era (check out my 14th Century Dress Pinterest board for more) is how many of them show women with their hair uncovered. Unlike later eras (and some earlier ones) the 14th century seems to be a time when women could go around without covering their hair.

(Women shown with uncovered hair in miniatures from other eras are often depicting vice and/or wickedness and this is indicated by the uncovered hair. The scandal of showing one’s hair in the 15th century was intense. )

However, some women did still cover their hair. Here’s one miniature with some hair covered and here’s another and here’s a third one. You also see head coverings in statuary. One thing I do when I am trying to decide what to include in these historical sets is to try to find multiple examples of something. That’s why you see some duplication of types of images on my 14th Century Dress Pinterest board.

That’s also why when I am dealing with an era I don’t know much about it can take me a long long time before I am comfortable drawing a paper doll of it. I learned a lot of history from Tom Tierney’s historical paper dolls and I want mine to be as helpful and accurate as I can make them. 

If you want some say in the time periods I create paper dolls for, think about supporting the blog on Patreon. I tend to listen to my Patrons when they make requests. Here’s a post about what patrons have made possible from earlier this week. 

Have you enjoyed 14th Century week? Let me know. I love to hear from you. 

Need a doll to wear today’s paper doll clothing? All the A Pose Dolls & Clothing

A 14th Century European Kirtle & Shoes

A 1300s kirtle for a paper doll with matching shoes and headdress from paperthinpersoas.com. A great way to teach kids history and a super fun coloring activity.

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In the world of 14th century dress in Europe, there’s a lot of layers. On Monday, you got to see the shift, the stockings and the shoes which were the first layers. Over that, women wore a kirtle.

Technically, add a girdle (belt) to keep your purse (which was also as close as anyone got to having pockets in the 14th century) and you were fulling dressed. This kirtle example has a spiral laced front and buttons on the cuffs.

Her girdle is based on this example. I looked at a lot of carved sculptures of the Virgin Mary when designing this set like this one and this one.

Her shoes come from Stepping Through Time by Olaf Goubitz. It’s a great resource. Her stockings would have been held up by garters, because bias cut wool doesn’t stay up on its own. However, based on my current understanding, the stockings would be rolled down over the garters to cover them, so that’s why the garter’s aren’t visible. 

If you want a historical doll to wear this example of 1300s clothing, than you can go grab Alice whose wearing a shift and has many pair of period shoes. 

Right now, I am thinking about what to do with Paper Thin Personas in 2019. I have a poll and please answer it if you haven’t. 

Should I continue the Dames & Dandies into 2019 or do a new annual project in 2019?

View Results

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And leave me a comment if you like or consider supporting the blog on Patreon if you want to donate. Here’s a post about how Patrons have helped

Need a doll to wear today’s paper doll clothing? All the A Pose Dolls & Clothing

A Pre-Thanksgiving Thank You to My Patrons

In December of 2015, I looked at my finances and realized if the blog was going to continue and grow, I needed a better way to pay for the operating costs. I keep my paper dolls free to print, but that doesn’t mean the site is free to run. Thanks to the generous donations of my Patrons I have been able too do the following:

  • Get a real professionally designed theme. The site looks SO MUCH better and the code is so much cleaner. And if I have issues, there’s a professional company I can ask.
  • Upgrade my server subscription and improve site performance.
  • Actually consider hiring a programmer to help make the site SSL secure (still researching this process, but it’s a bit beyond my skill set).
  • Run daily backups of the site. I haven’t needed these yet, but so much peace of mind. I hope, by the way, I never need them.
  • Back in 2016, I had a hack rerouting some of my URLs. This was far beyond my ability to fix, but thanks to my Patrons I was able to get it fixed, which cost several hundred dollars, and have that company install and monitor a firewall. That way it won’t happen again and if it does, they are available to help.
  • Use social media organizing soft wear to try to find new readers and make my art accessible on other platforms like Facebook, Pinterest and Instagram. I work full time. I can’t be manually posting to social media. I’m no “Social Media Guru” but I do know that there are people out there who might love my paper dolls and they maybe on something like Instagram far more than they are on the regular interwebs.

I realize that not everyone can donate and I believe in the importance of my art being free. I function on the NPR model and the hope that if you have a few bucks and you love the blog that you might step up and help cover the expenses. It’s not required, but it is gratefully accepted.

So, I thought I would take this week of Thanksgiving to say how thankful I am to everyone who has donated a little and to share the link to my Patreon page if you would like to donate as well: Donate to PTP Here

Best,

– Rachel

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