A Nod to the End of Summer with the Ms. Mannequin Paper Doll Fashions


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Today’s Printable Paper Doll Inspirations: Spring and Summer Fashions
A set of summery paper doll fashions with shorts, a sundress and blouse from paperthinpersonas.com.

A set of summery paper doll fashions with shorts, a sundress and blouse to print and color.

Summer is finally coming to an end here in Alabama. When I went on my usual walk around the campus at lunch, I actually was grateful I had a sweatshirt to wear. Of course, tomorrow it might be in a 90s. If it stays cool, I’ll have to switch out my short-sleeved summer cardigans for my long-sleeved winter cardigans.

The cardigan rotation is proof that fall is really here for me.

Meanwhile in paper doll land, I drew these paper doll fashions for the Ms. Mannequin paper dolls when it was still hot outside. So, think of these as a last summer set of fashions for them. Of course, knowing me, I’ll end up posting sundresses in December, because that’s just how I roll.

The theme for today’s paper doll fashions is stripes. I’ve noticed a lot of stripes this summer, especially broad stripes. I wanted to play with color, but also shape. This may, or may not, explain the shirt with the flounce sleeves. Has anyone else noticed that flounce sleeves are making a comeback? I’m excited about this, because when I wear them I feel like a princess. In my head, that shirt’s made of chambray, in case anyone is wondering.

As always, I love to hear from you guys, so leave me a comment and let me know what you think of today’s paper doll fashions.

Need a paper doll to wear today’s outfit? Pick out a Ms. Mannequin Paper Doll Here

A New Isadora Mini-Maiden Paper Doll to Color


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Today’s Printable Paper Doll Inspirations: Fall Fashions

A paper doll to color and print out from paperthinpersonas.com with a dress, contemporary hair cut and two pairs of shoes. Part of the Mini-Maiden series.
It does feel like autumn might finally be coming to Alabama. The weather is starting to cool down and today was just beautiful. I spent part of the weekend at the local botanical gardens. They are free and a wonderful place to go walking. I really enjoyed them and I want to go back again.

Today’s Mini-Maiden paper doll is Isadora who I haven’t featured since March when she was a faun. Isadora is named for Isadora Duncan, the dancer. I can’t remember if I mentioned that recently, but someone asked me how I name my paper dolls a while back and I was like, “Well… kinda randomly, truth be told.”

Anyway, I’ve been going through the fashion magazines of the season. I am ready for boots and I am ready for tights. Isadora doesn’t have tights, but she does have some fun boots. I love autumn and winter. They are by far my favorite seasons in Alabama.

Her other shoes are more formal. I thought her dress could go either way depending on the shoes. I also try to draw extra shoes when I draw dolls. An old habit from my full color dolls with skin tones.

Isadora, being in black and white, is a paper doll you can color anyway you wish. That’s part of the flexibility of black and white paper dolls.

I confess though, I was never a big “colorer” as a kid, so I still prefer the ones in color.

I hope everyone is having a great Monday and let me know what you think if today’s Isadora in a comment.

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Need a more outfits for today’s Mini-Maiden Paper Doll? Find More Clothing Here

A Paper Doll Outfit From the Year I Graduated High School


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Today’s Printable Paper Doll Inspirations:Fashion from When I Graduated High School
A black and white paper doll outfit coloring page from the year 2003, which was the year I graduated high school.
As a lot of you know, I grew up in Alaska. I love my home state and I miss it all the time. Alaska is both totally unique and totally beautiful. It will always be my home, but when it come to fashion, Alaska isn’t exactly cutting edge. In fact, it always took a while for styles to filter there way up the 49th state.

So, Julie of Paper Doll School, Boots of Popculture Looking Land, Miss Missy of Miss. Missy’s Paper Dolls and I decided on drawing a paper doll outfit from the year each of us graduate high school for the Collaborative Paper Doll 2017 Project. I graduated in 2003 and this is what I remember girls wearing.

I have no idea if it really is what was in style in 2003 is the point I am trying to make.

What I remember from that era (nearly 15 years ago which is crazy) is that the jeans were low rise and boot cut. The shirt were shorter and had tight sleeves. The shoes were heavy chunky boots.

These are all the things I recall from my high school years and I decided to include them in today’s paper doll outfit celebrating the year I graduated high school back in 2003.

Want to see more outfits from the Collaborative Paper Doll 2017 Project?

Go check out Julie of Paper Doll School, Boots of Popculture Looking Land and Miss Missy of Miss. Missy’s Paper Dolls. They maybe posting their outfits in the next few days or today. The end of September snuck up on all of us.

By the way, I feel like I should add that while I drew this paper doll outfit, I am in no way nostalgic for high school. There’s basically no force on this planet that would make me want to return to that period of my life. Seriously.

Need a doll to wear this stylish outfit? Grab the Doll here. 

The Sprites And Their Pulpy Fantasy Armor


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Today’s Printable Paper Doll Inspirations: I always blame these forays into pulpy absurd fantasy armor on Xena: Warrior PrincessA set of paper doll fantasy armor of the Sprites printable paper doll series inspired by Xena: Warrior Princess and other pulpy fantasy.

A set of paper doll fantasy armor of the Sprites printable paper doll series inspired by Xena: Warrior Princess and other pulpy fantasy.

Because working full time and going to school is hard, I have been trying to get a whole week’s of blog posts scheduled each weekend. As, I sat down to schedule this next week I was struck by the lack of content.

While I was worrying about how I was going to get through the next two weeks, I stumbled across today’s pulpy fantasy set for the Sprites paper dolls.

I don’t know why I had forgotten about it. It was all done, except for layout. Why I hadn’t done the layout, I don’t know. I drew and colored it at the same time I colored the Regency set and this fantasy set that I posted earlier.

Still, who I am to look a gift horse in the mouth. So, this Monday here’s a new Sprites set. I love pulpy fantasy sets. I blame this on having watched a lot of Xena: Warrior Princess at an impressionable age. I also feel like I draw enough practical paper doll armor, that I can get away with also drawing totally impractical paper doll armor.

As for the rest of the week, on Wednesday there will be a new addition to the Poppets 1920s collection. Friday, you can look forward to the September edition of the 2017 Paper Doll Collaboration.

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Looking for some Sprite paper dolls to wear these outfits? Pick out Sprite paper dolls here.

Ms. Mannequin’s 15th Century Burgundian Gown and Headdress


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Today’s Printable Paper Doll Inspirations: This Manuscript Illustration from 1470, this Manuscript Illustration from 1401-1500, this one from the same work, and this Manuscript Illustration from 1475

A Burgundian gown for a paper doll based on illuminated manuscript illustrations. Along with the gown, there is a headdress based on the designs of the 1450s.

A Burgundian gown for a paper doll based on illuminated manuscript illustrations. Along with the gown, there is a headdress based on the designs of the 1450s.

Today’s paper doll dress and headdress are both from the 15h century. The gown is known as a Burgundian gown named for the Duchy of Burgundy.

About 1450, this style of Burgundian gown became popular. The deep V-neckline revealed the kirtle (under dress) beneath. The trimming would have been fur or wool. The wide belt was placed above the natural waist and gives the gowns a pregnant look.

(Remember, being pregnant was a good thing for women in this time. After all, fertility was seen as a super critical part of a woman’s value.)

Women never had uncovered hair in this era. So, I needed a headdress to go with the Burgundian gown.

The headdress I chose to draw was based on this illustration of the Whore of Babylon from an 1470 manuscript. The headdress is from 1450, according to the Morgan Library where the manuscript is housed. I’m afraid I don’t know quite enough about the era yet (though I am studying) to make any claim either way.

By the way, the wonderful book Illuminating Fashion: Dress in the Art of Medieval France and the Netherlands, 1325-1515 is currently on sale from the Morgan Library for just 20 dollars. I bought a copy for my library and I’d recommend it if you are at all interested in medieval dress. Though it doesn’t touch on how these garments were made, nor does it discuss how to make them yourself, so… don’t buy it if that is what you want.

Secondary Sources:

Houston, Mary G. Medieval Costume in England and France: The 13th, 14th, and 15th Centuries. N.p.: Dover Publications, 1996. Print.

Scott, Margaret. Fashion in the Middle Ages. N.p.: J. Paul Getty Museum, 2011. Print.

Scott, Margaret. Medieval Dress & Fashion. N.p.: British Library, 2009. Print.

Ask me if you have any questions about the books or the manuscripts I looked at. There are links to all the manuscript illustrations at the top under the “inspiration” links list. I was just too lazy tonight to bother citing them all properly.

I know. I’m a rebel librarian sometimes. Happy Friday!

Mini-Maiden’s Romantic Princess Gown


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Today’s Printable Paper Doll Inspirations: This Dress from Pinterest
A romantic fantasy gown for the Mini-Maiden paper doll series.
Today’s paper doll dress was very heavily influenced by this dress on Pinterest. It’s not an exact replica, but it is really very close.I really loved the romantic style of the dress. It just felt so fairy tale to me.

The ribbon detailing on the sleeves and the bodice was one of the things that drew me to the dress. I didn’t like how  the bodice and the waist seam cut off the lines of the dress, so I changed that for my version.

I sometimes feel a little guilting drawing such close replicas to other’s designs, but I also know that clothing designs can’t be copyrighted, so I refuse to feel too guilty about it.

In my head, this is the sort of paper doll gown that a paper doll wears while lounging on a stone bench in the garden near a fountain playing her stringed instrument and looking super amazing. It is the opposite of these fantasy outfits.

There is no practicality here at all, except perhaps her shoes which I wanted to be simple given the complexity of the dress.

I do regret not doing some pattern on the trimming on the shoes, but I shall survive.

Meanwhile, I am three weeks into my graduate program. So far things are going pretty well. I have more work ahead of me, but I am feeling pretty confident about it.

I will admit that I’ve been struggling to find time to draw. I want to draw, but somehow I can’t seem to quite get into the right mental place to let things go and just relax into the process.

Friday there’s an amazing paper doll dress planned. A 15th century Burgundian gown for the Ms. Mannequin series. It’s glorious.

Also, Rosh Hashanah starts tonight at sunset, so Shana Tova everyone! May your new year be sweet.

Marisole Monday’s Early Fall Shirts & Jeans


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Today’s Printable Paper Doll Inspirations: Fall Fashions
A pair of light colored jeans and two shirts for paper dolls to print.

Paper doll clothing from paperthinpersonas.com.

Growing up in Alaska, autumn came very quickly. As soon as there was fresh snow on the mountain, known as termination dust, it was time to pull out boots and give up on summer. In Alabama, autumn comes in more slowly. It’s a gradual shift from the humid tropical weather of summer to a damp crisp autumn. While I don’t think the weather will last into this week, last week really felt like fall. Mostly, because we got rain from Irma, just rain- nothing serious where I live, and it made everything cooler and grey.

Of course, for a paper doll drawer like myself, the change of seasons gets me thinking about clothing. So, today, I wanted to share some transitional pieces. I’m not sure tank tops are really autumnal, but since it was in the 80s yesterday, I think they could be.

The colors are more autumn than the paper doll clothing designs. In the fall, I think of wines, rich purples and dark teals. To counter balance, the rich colors, I did light washed jeans. Apparently, bleached denim is back, so I thought I would share some.

I hope everyone is having a great autumn. I’m settling into my routine with grad school and work. The students have returned to campus (yay!) and I am enjoying working with them. I don’t know what it is about college students, but I adore interacting with them.

Meanwhile, what’s your favorite thing about autumn? Food? Weather? Getting to finally wear boots again?

Need a Marisole Monday & Friends Lady Paper Doll to wear today’s outfit? Pick One Out Here

A Floral Fantasy Princess Gown for the B&B Paper Doll Series


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Today’s Printable Paper Doll Inspirations:Renaissance Dresses & Princess Gowns

A fantasy paper doll gown inspired by the renaissance with stockings and shoes with a book as an accessory.

A fantasy paper doll gown inspired by the renaissance with stockings and shoes.

Confession time: I didn’t keep really good notes on this princess gown- I think of it as one even though there is no crown. I usually try to write down where an idea comes from or what images I look at as source material, but in this case, I really don’t have much of an answer. I know I wanted to do something renaissance inspired and fantasy gown, but with a very different aesthetic than the Sorceress Gowns Project.

I think of the Sorceress gowns as being all about layers and flow.

This gown, on the other hand, is very much a renaissance inspired gown, though it’s not historically accurate in anyway.

And I love, love, love the colors.

The colors were inspired by a sunset, but I really wanted to embrace the idea of rich yellows, oranges and greens. The cream blouse and socks are meant to counter the rich color scheme of the rest of the dress. The garters are orange, of course, to march the flowers. I trimmed everything in black to counter balance the bright yellow and orange.

Playing with color is such a fun part of creating paper doll fashions.

Need to get a Bodacious & Buxom paper doll to wear these fabulous clothes? Pick one out here.

Meet Nikola: The New Ms Mannequin Printable Paper Doll


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Today’s Printable Paper Doll Inspirations: The Challenge of Olive Skintone 
A printable paper doll named Nikola with brown hair, blue eyes and olive skin. She has two pairs of shoes and can wear any of the Ms. Mannequin clothing.

A set of urban fashion inspired printable paper doll clothing from paperthinpersonas.com. One pair of jeans and two tank tops make up today's paper doll outfit.

I’ve written before about some of the challenges of paper doll skin-tones. It’s important to me that their be a variety of paper doll skin-tones. I also think it’s important that there not be too much variety, because if there is than it’s hard to share shoes among the dolls.

So, I wanted to do an olive skin-tone and that was how this paper doll’s skin-tone began. Once I had it created, I realized that it was really only one hex off from the skin-tone I created for Stella and Chloe.

At that point, I was like- Why not just use their skin-tone? There’s no difference once this prints, because printers just aren’t that precise. And I couldn’t even see a difference.

And so, Nikola can share her shoes with both Stella and Chloe and they can share shoes with her.

Nikola is a feminine form of Nicholas from countries including the Czech republic, Poland and Germany. I’m half Czech, so I thought it would be fun to give her a Czech name.

I gave Nikola blue eyes, because my sister has olive skin and blue eyes. It’s not a very common combination, but I’ve been told it’s more common in Eastern Europe than you see it in the US. I’ve never been (but I so badly want to go to Prague), but someday I will.

Tomorrow, there’s a curvy fantasy gown and then on Monday… I actually have no idea. I should sort that out. 🙂

Need some clothing for today’s Ms Mannequin paper doll? Pick Out Some Ms. Mannequin Clothing Here

Mini-Maiden’s 1935 Dress & Shoes From Sears Magazine


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Today’s Printable Paper Doll Inspirations: Sears Fashions from 1935
A black and white 1935 paper doll dress coloring page with shoes. Free to print from paperthinpersonas.com.
The Mini-Maiden paper doll series are getting some attention today with a 1935 dress and a pair of 1933 Shoes. Both the shoes that go with today’s day dress and the dress based on designs from the book, Everyday Fashions of the Thirties As Pictured in Sears Catalogs.

One of my favorite series of fashion history books are the Sears Fashions set from Dover Publications. Each book is a reprint of pages from Sears Magazines from a decade long period. There’s not a huge amount of contextual information, but they provide a vivid window into the fashions of the decade for children and adults. Plus, they are super reasonably priced, so not bad place to start a collection.

(Says the girl with over 50 fashion history books on her shelves.)

The 1930s is a fascinating period. Skirts get longer than the 1920s and there’s a lot of fun details like the scalloped collar on this dress. There’s also a lot of asymmetry in the styles as well which you can see from the side wrap style of today’s dress.

Right behind the 1920s (which are my first love) is the 1930s. Again, it’s not a period where it would look terribly good on me, but I love the details in the styles.

There’s also a theory in fashion history that really modern clothing begins in the 1930s and the changes that follow this era are fairly minor. I think there’s a lot of truth to that.

Really fashion hasn’t dramatically changed in the last 80 or so years.

So, what do people think of today’s paper doll dress? I always love to hear from people in the comments.

Need a Mini-Maiden paper doll to wear today’s outfit? Pick a Mini-Maiden Paper Doll Here.