1940s Week: The Winter Dresses for the B Pose Paper Dolls

A pair of 1940s dresses for the printable paper dolls from paperthinpersonas.com. On the left, there is a suit from Adrian dated to 1943-1945 and on the right a dress from McCall's sewing patterns from 1946. Available to print in color or black and white.

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This whole week of 1940s fashion would not have happened if it weren’t for the suit on the left from LACMA. Seriously, I feel in love with that suit and then I was like, Welp, I guess I’m going to draw a paper doll with 1940s underwear and things… they spiraled from there.

You can see the suit in photos here and it was designed by Gilbert Adrian. Who was Gilbert Adrian? Well, it was one of the names used by Adrian Adolph Greenberg, a costume designing legend of the Golden Age of Hollywood. Even if you’ve never heard the name Adrian, you have seen his work. He designed costumes for The Wizard of Oz,the 1938 Marie Antoinette and over 250 other films. During the 1940s, he began a commercial fashion line from which I assume this suit is related, based on the date.

Now, the dress on the right shouldn’t be neglected, just because it’s not from a famous designer. It’s from the McCall sewing pattern company, McCall 6533 to be specific. I liked how contemporary it felt, despite being from the 1940s. I am regretting that I didn’t draw a matching hat to go with it. Clearly, I need to do more 1940s clothing to fix that act of neglect.

The purse is a bit of a mystery to me. I noted the date 1940s next to it and usually I also write down the source, but I guess I didn’t. I’ve been through my 1940s Fashion Pinterest Board, where I try to keep these things, several times with no luck. I’m sure there was a source and I am going to leave things at that.

I tried to capture the strong shoulder of the 1940s with both these pieces, though I’m not entirely sure I was successful. The 1940s is much like the 1980s in that the shoulders are broad. If you missed it, on Monday, there was a 1940s version of Beatrix. Friday there will be summery 1940s dresses to round out the set.

Meanwhile, let me know what you think about today’s 1940s dresses in a comment. I’d love to hear from you.

Need a doll for today’s paper doll clothing? All the B Pose Dolls & Clothing, but I would recommend the 1940s Beatrix if you want period underwear to match the era of these dresses.

A Fantasy Prince Paper Doll Outfit C Pose Paper Doll

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So, I wanted to try to draw some formal fantasy paper doll clothing. I originally created this fantasy outfit for the C Pose guys and I think of it as a kinda classic fantasy outfit in a style I draw a lot. I wanted to do a spin-off outfit that would feel more formal and refined- like if this was a peasant outfit, than today’s outfit would be a prince or something.

In my head, the tunic is velvet over a silk shirt. I’m not sure what the pants are made of. Maybe something like really thin fine leather? Or perhaps a very nice soft wool? Silk wouldn’t stand up well to any sort of wear. Rather than my usual sword accessories, I decided a book was more fitting, though I’m sure he can borrow a weapon from here if he needs one.

There’s an alternative color scheme available for my Patrons over on my Patreon page. Join if you want. It’s a fun group and I try to post content there every week from my sketchbook or other sources.

Also, if you haven’t checked it out, I am doodling a dress every day and posting them to Instagram.

Need a a Doll to wear today’s clothing? All the C Pose Dolls & Clothing

Meet Bridget: A St. Patrick’s Day Paper Doll

A super fun St. Patrick Day paper doll to print in color or black and white.

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One of my goals of 2018 was to try to do a paper doll for each of the major holidays. I missed Purim, but I have gotten most of them so far. Today’s paper doll is to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day. I have only drawn one other St. Patrick’s Day paper doll, so here’s my second one ever.

As many of you know, St. Patrick’s Day is the feast day for St. Patrick, patron saint of Ireland. St. Patrick was a fifth-century Christian missionary and bishop in Ireland. It’s said that he used the clover to illustrate the concept of the trinity (father-son-holy ghost) and that he banished the snakes from Ireland. Interestingly enough, the earliest St. Patrick’s Day celebrations in the United States happened in Boston in 1737 and in New York in 1762. That means that the holiday was being observed in the United States before there even was a United States.

Anyway, I had planned to do a St. Patrick’s Day outfit like I did for Valentine’s Day, but then it occurred to me that I didn’t have a redheaded paper doll yet and something about a redhead for St. Patrick’s Day just made sense. So, I did a full St. Patrick’s Day paper doll and an outfit. I named this new B Pose face Bridget, after the other patron Saint of Ireland, and she has jeans, sneakers and a clover t-shirt. She can, of course, wear any of the B Pose clothing, but she has a different skin-tone from Benedita or Beatrix.

I hope anyone celebrating tomorrow has a wonderful St. Patrick’s Day! I’ll probably be having a quiet day at home. Does anyone have neat St. Patrick’s Day plans? Let me know in a comment.

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

A Paper Doll Robe à la Française from 1770

An 18th century paper doll dress based on a 1770 Robe à la Française with a hat and matching shoes in black and white or color.

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Since yesterday, I shared Alice in her 18th century undies, it seemed only fitting to share an 18th century paper doll dress today. 

In the 18th century, there were two major dress styles (along with countless variations, but these are the two biggies). They were the Robe à la Française and the Robe à l’Anglaise. Both styles consisted of an open robe with a petticoat. The stomacher, used to fill in the upper part of the robe, and petticoat could either match the dress or be in a contrasting style. The two styles are distinguished by the backs of the dresses. The Robe à la Française has pleats in the back that fall loose from the shoulders (see this example) while the Robe à l’Anglaise has those pleats stitched down into a more fitted style (see this example). The Robe à la Française was also called the a sack back or sacque back gown.

As fashion tends to do, the Robe à la Française began it’s early existence as an informal lose garment and became increasingly complex as the years went on. Today’s 18th century paper doll dress is a Robe à la Française based on this example from the Met Museum circa 1770. The original is made from scrumptious white on white imported Chinese silk. But, given the constraints of my art style, I decided to go with a rich deep red instead for today’s 18th century paper doll dress.

The hat is earlier than the dress dating from 1760. It is based on this one. Her shoes, or mules, are based on this pair from LACMA. Those wooden soles look really uncomfortable to me. I have no idea if it was at all likely to have your garters match your shoes, but since I could I thought, ‘why not?’

This gown is designed to fit over 18th Century Alice’s underwear and hoops. I would recommend adding a floating tab to the back of the skirt if needed, as it is very wide.

There’s a blue based color scheme for my Patreons on the Patreon page.

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

Alice Goes to the 18th Century

A paper doll with 18th century underwear including a shift, stays, pocket, hoops and shoes. She's free to print in black and white or in color from paperthinpersonas.com. Great for homeschooling history lessons about women's fashion through time.

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I love costume history  and the 18th century is a favorite era of mine. I wanted to design an 18th century paper doll and I chose Alice as the model. Because of the paper doll’s historic underwear, she won’t be able to wear all the A Pose clothing. I made the decision that I was more concerned with having period underwear than with having versatility. 

So, what underwear is she wearing? Well, Alice is wearing a shift, a strapless set of stays (like these or these) and has a pocket tied around her waist (like this or this). She also has a separate set of hoops. I based them on this set of hoops from LACMA. Hoops were only worn with the most formal of gowns in the 18th century, so they won’t fit under all the 18th century paper doll gowns I ever draw.

If you look at enough pairs of mid-18th century shoes, they do start to flow together at after a while. I could literally link to dozens that are in the same basic style as Alice’s brown shoes, her red shoes and blue shoes with pattens. Here is one example, here is another and here is another. The differences come from the shape of the toe and the heel.

By the 1780s, other styles were coming into fashion. So, her brocade shoes are based on this pair from 1785 from Historic New England. By the 1790s, shoes that look more like modern kitten heels had taken over like this pair.

Her blue shoes have attached pattens, which were leather and wood oversoles meant to protect the shoes from the muck and mud. This set was my main inspiration, but here is another example of the same idea.

Historic hairstyles are a challenge for me every time. I’m still learning enough to illustrate them properly, but for today’s 18th century paper doll I really wanted to draw something that was as not too over the top. I used my historic hair style books and portraits, including this one, this one and this one. I could have gone gray with her hair, but I just didn’t really like how it looked.

Wednesday, there will be a gown for today’s 18th century paper doll version of Alice.

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

Post-Apocalyptic Fashions for the B Pose Paper Dolls

A set of mix and match post-apocalyptic paper doll clothing to print and play with for the paper dolls of Paper Thin Personas. Unique printable paper doll designs!

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Some new post-apocalyptic designs for the B Pose Dames to match the designs I did for the C Pose Dandies. I had a lot of fun with these, though like a lot of my post-apocalyptic stuff, they are not terribly practical. Still I never let practicality get in the way of my paper doll designs. 

I love Post-Apocalyptic designs for clothing. I collect them on a Pinterest board for Post-Apocalyptic Fashions and one of the inspirational images was this one

You can see these in my sketchbook on Instagram or if you’re a Patron you got to see it a few weeks ago.

Confession: I am super tired and so this is going to be a short post. 

Let me know in the comments, if you think the A Pose Dames need some post-apocalyptic fashions to fit in with their B & C friends. 

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

Trendy Winter Styles For The A Pose Dames

Trendy winter clothing for paper dolls with a sweater, and two different bottoms.

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I love fashion magazines, particularly People Style Watch, because it has really clear clothing photos that make it super easy to draw paper doll clothing based on the styles.

Yes, I judge fashion magazines on how easy it is to draw paper dolls based on their photos.

Anyway, one of the things I enjoy in the fashion magazines is seeing what is considered trendy in any given season. This winter two big trends have been sleeve details, folkloric florals and embroidered jeans. I love embroidery, so I am not at all upset about this trend.

Today’s A Pose paper doll clothing covers all these trends. There’s a bell sleeved sweater, a folkloric printed skirt and a pair of embroidered jeans. To accessorize each outfit, I also added a pair of ankle boots. The pattern on the jeans is based on traditional crewel embroidery designs. I’ve always loved crewel embroidery.

It’s one of those things that I feel like if I had time, I would want to learn how to do. I never seem to eke out the time to do it, though.

(Also, because I was curious, the phrase “eke out” dates back to the 1590s and means to “extend or make last longer.” Who knew it was that old?)

Anyway, this is the first contemporary fashion set for the A Pose girls dames.

Need a Doll to wear today’s outfit? All the A Pose Dolls & Clothing

The Winter Princess Fantasy Dress For Pose B

A fantasy winter princess dress designed to fit the B Pose printable paper dolls from paperthinpersonas.com. Free to print in color or black and white.

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When I was first drawing and prepping content for the new Dames and Dandies series, I made a list of what I thought might be the first nine clothing sets to draw for the new paper dolls. Both my Patrons and folks who follow me on Facebook got to see this list at the top of which was “Winter Big Princess Gown.”

For those of you who don’t know, “big gown” is my short hand for these sorts of full skirted over the top dresses I am fond of drawing. Wenesday’s Valentine’s Day dress is another “big gown”. I just like to draw things with huge skirts, because the size of the skirt allows for layering and over skirts and all sorts of other decorative elements.

It’s hard to draw a super over the top mini-dress. You just don’t have as much room.

So, anyway, I wanted to create a winter princess dress. You know, a sort of  over the top, full skirted dress that would feel like the sort of thing a fairy tale princess might wear while wandering through a snow covered landscape. Possibly to meet a prince or possibly just because, she felt like it. Princes need not always be involved. 

Today’s winter princess dress is trimmed in fur. The bodice feels a little military influenced, with the trimming, buttons and cuffs. The skirt is three layers. There’s an over skirt, an under skirt and a wide pleated bottom skirt. 

The motif on the over skirt is supposed to be a snowflake, but I’m not sure that’s obvious. In fact, the first color scheme had a gold snowflake and it looked more like a star to me. So, I ended up recoloring the whole dress. I was thinking of snowy winter days when I colored this- blue-grey is a color I associate with the winter time. 

You can see the first color scheme over on the Patreon page. Let me know which color scheme you liked better. I’m super curious. 

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

The Bellflower Princess Paper Doll & Her Ball Gown

A beautiful black princess paper doll with braids and a ballgown inspired by the bellflower. She can wear any of the B Pose paper doll clothing from Paperthinpersonas.com.

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The first dress I designed was the lily ball gown, but this dress is what turned that dress from just as “this would be fun to draw” into a “oh, I could make this a series”. So, I really think of today’s Beatrix princess paper doll as the inspiration behind the whole week.

When I was planning the Dames and Dandies series, I new I was going to have a stable set of “faces”, but I wanted those faces to have many versions. So, this is Version 2 of Beatrix– The Bellflower Princess Paper Doll version.

Also, huge shout out to my Mom, who when I was describing the flower I was remembering from the garden as a child, recalled the name of it and spelled it correctly enough for me to goggle it. The formal name for bellflowers is Campanula, by the way, which is what she told me.

I just thought Campanula Princess didn’t roll off the tongue as well as Bellflower Princess, hence the name change.

The original doodles for today's printable paper doll with the dress on the left and the doll's head on the upper right.
The original doodles for today’s printable paper doll from my notebook. The doll’s head is on the right and the dress is on the left.

In the order of this princess paper doll design, the dress came first. Once I had it drawn, I wanted a crown and I came up with the idea of the flowers coming out from a pair of buns.

Once I had that idea in my head, I had to figure out how to actually create in a way that would work for someone cutting out the paper doll. So, I drew the hair style and the crown pieces separately.

Than, I used Photoshop to create one version of Beatrix with out the crown and second version with the crown. So, the hair with the crown can be cut out and placed over the hair without the crown.

This also assures that this version of Beatrix can wear a hat without floral crown pieces getting in the way.

I don’t often share my process photos here, because I try to save them for my Patrons. So, if you want to see more images of the raw beginnings of paper doll sets, than donate and join Patreon. I try to post a few “behind the scenes” images every month. I also put them up on Instagram erratically

In case you missed any of this week’s floral ball. The first dress was Monday’s lily ball gown, the second was Wednesday’s fiddlehead fern suit and then today, we have the bellflower princess.

Let me know what you think of today’s paper doll in a comment or which paper doll from the floral ball was your favorite? I confess I don’t have one this time and usually I do.

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

A Fiddlehead Fern Inspired Suit for a Paper Doll Prince

A suit inspired by the 18th century and the fiddlehead fern for a paper doll prince. Free to print in color or black and white and the perfect accompaniment for any paper doll princess.

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I grew up in Alaska. And if there is one thing that is true about Southeast Alaska, it is a super green place. There’s so many trees and foliage and moss. It’s as though the whole forest is shades of green.

Among all these mounds of different green things, there were many ferns. I grew up referring to most of the ferns as fiddlehead ferns, only to learn recently that there are several species that have that common name.

The “fiddlehead” of the fern is the coiled part that develops as the fern is growing.

I wanted to design a men’s suit to go with all the floral theme, but I couldn’t think of a masculine flower. So, instead I found myself reminded that the top a fiddlehead fern looks a bit like the top of a cane.

Once that occurred to me, today’s 18th century inspired men’s suit for a paper doll prince was born. It’ll fit the C Pose paper dolls, FYI.

Yeah, I confess my brain works in strange ways sometimes.

The fiddlhead ferns trim his cutway coat, decorate the cane and his crown. Full blooming ferns decorate the sleeves. The shapes on the edges of fern leaves echo the trim on the vest. The colors of ferns inspired the green color scheme.

I mean, I could hardly make a “fiddlehead fern suit” and then turn it bright red.

Also, I should add, that fiddleheads are edible and are quite tasty sautéd with butter and garlic. On the other hand, what isn’t tasty sautéd with butter and garlic? I think I would eat shoe leather if it was covered in enough butter and garlic.

I digress.

This suit was designed, of course, for the C Pose dandies and goes with yesterday’s lily ball gown. I don’t draw a lot of prince paper doll clothing, so I had fun designing this suit and crown for a paper doll prince, or king, I suppose.

Need a a Doll to wear today’s clothing? All the C Pose Dolls & Clothing

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