Oodles of Doodles: Princesses in Progress

I keep a memo book in my purse. I use it for everything from grocery lists to notes about blog posts to doodling paper doll sets. I tend to draw small in my notebook and then pull it out when it comes time to actually transfer my ideas into my sketchbook.

I’ll openly confess that half or more of what I doodle never makes it into paper doll form, but when I am staring at a blank page feeling uninspired, knowing I have my little memo book at hand is awfully useful.

All of these pages are doodles for my plans for my Princess Paper Doll Club which I hope to start next year. I haven’t decided all the details, but I think it will be a six or twelve month subscription where each month the subscribers will be sent a unique Princess paper doll for coloring and in color. Of course, each princess will be able to share each other’s clothing and each princess will have I think about five dresses/outfits.

First up we have the February/Valentine’s Day Princess. I don’t plan on naming the Princesses, but titling each of them something like, “The Princess Who Liked Hearts” or “The Princess Who Loved Gears” or “The Princess who…” You get the idea.

Valentine's Day with birds and hearts. Maybe I should be less typical?
Valentine’s Day with birds and hearts. Maybe I should be less typical?

Next is my sketches for the March Princess. I was thinking both of the famous “ides of March” and of James Madison, whose birthday was in March. This led, obviously, to high waists and Roman style draping. (Hey, I don’t judge where other people get their ideas.)

Daffodils are actually really hard to draw. Who knew?

There’s a little more March at the top of this page before it gets into April doodles. April always makes me think of that old nursery rhyme, “April Showers Bring May Flowers”. So, rainboots and lots of floral patterns, plus gardening accessories. I am thinking of calling her, “The Princess Who Splashes in Mud Puddles.”

Every Princess needs rain boots and a shovel as accessories, don’t you think?

So, here you have it. The thrilling world of my notebooks. I really do recommend thumbnail doodling. I think it really helps to have a chance to draw out what you think you want before you actually draw it for “real”. On rare occasions, I do actually practice sketch full size- often on lined paper- before I transfer the design to my notebook. It’s not very common, but I do it sometimes. Often for hats like fedoras or bonnets, because those flummox me.

What to get a special announcement when the Princess club goes live? Just leave a comment letting me know and I’ll add you to my list. 🙂


      1. I probably won’t be doing anything with the Rejected Princesses. While I enjoy the site, I generally avoid drawing real people- living or dead.

    1. The big trick with drawing corsets (or any piece of clothing) is to think about how they work on the human body. Corsets are boned, so they are very stiff and they distort anything underneath them (including the human body, but I digress).

      For me, I like to start with an outline of the corset and then draw in boning which goes in different places depending on era/intent of the finished garment. I strongly recommend looking at a lot of corsets to get an idea of how they are boned.

      And then it’s a matter of practice, practice and more practice.

      Maybe I’ll do a tutorial someday. I do enjoy drawing corsets.

  1. I’d like to know when the princess club goes live. Your descriptions of the princesses are really interesting to me and I love how creative the Ides of March/James Madison one is:) Plus I love steampunk so the Princess Who Likes Gears definitely appeals to me. I hope you do a whole year of princesses.

    I was trying to think of what month Steampunk would be appropriate for and thought of September, partly because Steampunk September sounds good and mostly because my birthday is in September:) Though I really like the creative links to things in or associated with the months you’ve come up with so whatever you choose for September should be fun:)

    Also, are the princess going to be Marisole Monday doll size or another line you have or are they going to be a new doll?

    1. The Princesses will be sized to go with my new Sprite series which is replacing the Pixies. Each set will have one doll and then six outfits- mostly gowns at the moment.

      I was thinking of doing Steampunk in October which is Ada Lovelace Day, but October is also Halloween and Halloween, we all know, is an important paper doll holiday. So, I’m all divided.

      1. October definitely seems like a good month for Steampunk. It would be fun if in a steampunk world the princess were attending a masquerade or costume Halloween ball and had several “costumes” with a steampunk flair. Like a mechanical bear or rabbit costume, a fairy tale or nursery rhyme character like Little Bo Peep, maybe a steampunk take on a historical character of pre Victorian prominence and there are lots of classic costumes that could be very interesting with a steampunk twist:) It would be a fun chance to do a steampunk take on some outfits that might not normally be steampunked.

    1. I’m irrationally worried about my ability to draw daffodils. They are NOT easy, but I have been practicing. (Because who doesn’t practice drawing daffodils in their spare time. 🙂 )

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