Empress Fantasy Gown

A fantasy gown for the printable paper doll series Jewels and Gemstones inspired by the Tang Dynasty of China, but not historically accurate at all. Printable in color or black and white for coloring.

Black and White PDF | Color PDF | More Jewels & Gemstones Paper Dolls

Thoughts on Today’s Paper Doll
One of my favorite things to look at on Pinterest are these fantasy versions of Tang Dynasty dress, an imperial dynasty of China spanning the 7th to 10th centuries. I don’t know enough about the history of Chinese clothing to even begin to consider drawing actual historical Chinese dress, but I really like looking. I think these gowns are all so flowing and elegant.

While I know enough about most eras of Western Fashion to at least approach them, Asian clothing (particularly China) is kinda a black box for me. I should do more reading on it, but sources are pretty difficult to find for anything before the Qing Dynasty. I own one book, but my collection is pretty limited in that area.

Inspiration for Today’s Paper Doll
Occasionally, I like to dip into my own archives and draw a new gown based on an older paper doll set, especially if it’s a set that I really like. So, today’s paper doll gown was inspired by a set I did back in 2015 called the Elven Empress. While I didn’t actually look at any Tang dynasty reference images, this is definitely got some Tang Dynasty influences.

Specific Source Images: Elven Empress paper doll set from 2015

Learn/See More
On the Blog: More Jewels & Gemstones paper dolls & the Elven Empress set from 2015
Around the Internet: Tang Dynasty Dress example and a Tang Dynasty sculpture, Tang Dynasty style screen & another example of Tang Dynasty dress

Last Thoughts
As life has been nuts lately since I am moving at the moment, my goal has been one post per week for the foreseeable future and, of course, a Friday post for my Patrons over on Patreon. Thanks to everyone who supports the blog through Patreon!

Ballet Practice Clothing

A set of dancing clothing with two leotards, two skirts and two wrap sweaters with tights and toe shoes for the curvy Jewels and Gemstones paper dolls.

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Thoughts on Today’s Paper Doll
I love drawing pretty things like tutus, but I also wanted to draw practice clothing, because in reality many folks who dance, dance for the love of dance. They are not automatically dancing with the goal of performance before a crowd.

I have mixed feelings about ballet’s relationship with body shape, as I have said before. The stats on dancers and eating disorders are troubling. One 2003 study from the journal Psychopathology found that non-professional ballet dancers reported the highest prevalence of eating disorders (anorexia nervosa 1.8%; bulimia nervosa 2.7%; eating disorders not otherwise specified 22.1%) compared to gymnasts and bodybuilders, two other performative sports with high prevalence of eating disorders. I should add that the study looked at non-professional dancers, so I’m not saying these are the stats for people actually dancing in the National Ballet company or something.

Anyhow, I couldn’t in good conscious draw ballerina paper dolls for kids without feeling like I needed to mention the issues of body image and ballet. I try so hard not to preach on this site, but I know too many people in recovery from eating disorders, so I take that stuff really seriously.

Inspiration for Today’s Paper Doll
I don’t do a lot of mix ad match sets anymore, but given that I couldn’t fit clothing and en pointe shoes on the same pages as the dolls I drew to go with this series, I thought I would make sure to give a variety of practice clothing to be mixed and matched. If you’re paying close attention, you’ll notice the en pointe shoes duplicate. I didn’t feel like drawing the same thing over and over again.

Specific Source Images: Dancewear Solutions and International Dance Supplies were two of the sites I used to find images of dance clothing.

Learn/See More
On the Blog: More Jewels & Gemstones paper dolls & other Ballerina paper dolls
Around the Internet:Eating Disorders and Body Image Disturbances among Ballet Dancers, Gymnasium Users and Body Builders, Why Ballet Hasn’t Yet Caught Up to the Body Positivity Movement from Medium & Big Moves Dance Company: Beyond Body Positive Towards Fat Liberation

Last Thoughts

So, right now life is super crazy busy for me and I don’t see it slowing down for a while. I keep thinking- next month won’t be so bad and then next month rolls around and it is just as insane. So, thank you for your paitence as I work through everything happening in my life.

Meanwhile, don’t forget that becoming a patron means getting an extra paper doll/outfit every Friday.

I’m thinking I should also draw some non-ballet stuff. I specifically called this collection Ballet & Dancing. What other sorts of dance should I include? Leave me a suggestion in the comments.

Pearl & The Ballet and Dancing Collection

A ballerina paper doll with en pointe shoes and practice slippers. She can share any of the paper doll clothing from the Jewels and Gemstones series.

Black and White PDF | Color PDF | More Jewels & Gemstones Paper Dolls

Thoughts on Today’s Paper Doll
I was never a dancer. I just didn’t take to it as a kid. My lack of coordination generally leaves something to be desired. However, I do love to dance, even if I do so badly. Who cares? I’m also never going to be a professional weight-lifter, but I like lifting weights.

One of the things that is important to me is that all bodies have value and all bodies are beautiful. Ballet, to a high degree, profits from the deprivation of female bodies and the idealization of a form of beauty to which few can attain naturally. So, clearly I have mixed feelings about the whole thing, but what the heck? I have mixed feelings about all sorts of topics from drawing pulpy sexy armor to princess dresses.

Mixed feeling just means being aware of the complexities of the universe and that’s something I think is important to cultivate.

Inspiration for Today’s Paper Doll
All right, so I wanted to make sure to include pointe shoes with each of my ballerina paper dolls, because I wanted them to match the dolls individual skintone. There’s this concept in ballet called “breaking the line” and you don’t want the color of the toe shoes to break the smooth expanse of leg. However, toe shoes take up a lot of room, so there’s not a lot of space for other stuff on the page. Opps.

Specific Source Images: Well, I googled en pointe shoes and went from there? I mean, I don’t have a specific image to share here.

Learn/See More
On the Blog: More Jewels & Gemstones paper dolls & other Ballerina paper dolls
Around the Internet: There’s a super interesting article from New York Times about the introduction of brown pointe shoes in 2018.

Last Thoughts
True story, I will never forget my sister (who did ballet) being given a lecture by her dance teacher on the proper location for the bun on her head. It was one of those moments, when I recall thinking that the level of weird obsessive detail in ballet is… well, weird.

I do not know if Pearl’s bun would be considered acceptable, but I’m also pretty sure I don’t care.

I love creating paper dolls (as you know) and becoming a patron helps you partner with me to make this happen. So, consider joining us!

Leave me a comment and let me know what you think of today’s paper doll! I love hearing from you all.

The Music Frock with a Draped Skirt: Part of the Princess Trousseau

Black and White PDF | Color PDF | More Jewels & Gemstones Paper Dolls

Thoughts on Today’s Paper Doll
Today’s dress is one of four I designed together to be classic “big skirted princess dresses” for the Jewels and Gemstones paper dolls. Two of them are Patron exculsives (join here) and two of them are going up on the blog here. I plan to create more, but at the moment, I just have the four.

Four dresses doesn’t make a full trousseau though, so stay tuned for additional dresses for this collection.

Princesses get a bad rep. It’s easy to look at the idea of a Princess and argue they have no automony, they get rescued and they are valued only for their appearance. Despite that, and despite being a feminist, I continue to draw regularly and often my Princess dresses.

It’s not that I’m not aware of the issues surrounding the concept of the Princess. It’s not that I don’t have serious issues with Disney and the commodification of girlhood. It’s not that I don’t occasionally prefer the idea of full-plate armor over full-skirted gowns. It’s that I don’t think femininity should in anyway be associated with weakness.

The only problem with Princesses is when they are offered to young girls as the only acceptable way to be.

Inspiration for Today’s Paper Doll
I really did have a lot of fun designing this one. It pretty much came out of a doodling session on my phone using the Procreate app on my phone, which I am sort of enjoying when I don’t have pen or paper with me.

Specific Source Images: This doodle

Learn/See More
On the Blog: More Jewels & Gemstones paper dolls & More of the Princess Trousseau (which at the moment is just this dress)
Around the Internet: I do keep a “Rococo/Big Skirted Absurdity” section on my Fantasy Pinterest Board

Last Thoughts
As my long time readers know, I have a strange obsession with the idea of different dresses for different activities. I think I read to many Victorian novels at an impressionable age. So, this is kind of an excuse to indulge in that fantasy.

Yes, I know actually having to change my clothing for each activity of my day would really be annoying. I don’t even like putting on gym clothes.

If you’d like an extra paper doll each week, check out Patreon. It’s a great way to get more paper dolls and support PTP.

Lapis and her Summer Shoes

A dark haired paper doll with summer shoes. Free to print from paperthinpersonas.com

Black and White PDF | Color PDF | More Jewels & Gemstones Paper Dolls

Thoughts on Today’s Paper Doll
You know, I really don’t do a lot of paper dolls with fair skin and dark hair. I’m not sure why I don’t… but I don’t. So, here is one today.

It’s kinda strange that I don’t, because my favorite two Barbie’s as a kid were a Jasmine Barbie from the movie Aladdin (which my sister melted in the microwave, true story) and a really pale doll with super dark hair. I don’t think either of those dolls were actual Barbie branded, but that’s neither here nor there.

Inspiration for Today’s Paper Doll
I was working on my summery clothing for the paper dolls and I realized I have never done a Lapis paper doll with shoes. I’ve done a medieval fantasy one and a cybergoth one. Both of those were super fun to design, but I did find myself thinking- maybe I should have one that’s got like just some shoes.

Plus, I do love drawing shoes.

Specific Source Images: I used Instyle March 2019 issue– their big Spring Fashion report. I like getting away from screens when I draw. That’s why I haven’t gone digital yet for my art.

Learn/See More
On the Blog: More Jewels & Gemstones paper dolls
Around the Internet: All the colors (except her hair and eyes) come from Pantone’s Spring 2019 Color Report

Last Thoughts
Just so folks know, there is a bunch of stuff related to my personal life and work happening. None of it bad, but all of it time consuming. So, the blog posts are going to continue to be super erratic until… well, things settle which might be like 2020. Ain’t gonna lie.

However, my Patreon content is my main priority. So, if you do want more regular content, come over and join up.

As always, I love hearing from you and I try to respond to questions, so feel free to leave a comment if you like.

Happy 4th of July!

A 4th of July patriotic paper doll gown with stars and stripes for the curvy Jewels and Gemstones paper dolls.

Black and White PDF | Color PDF | More Jewels & Gemstones Paper Dolls

Thoughts on Today’s Paper Doll
Growing up in Southeast Alaska, the 4th of July was a really big deal. There was always a parade, multiple barbecues and fireworks. I have many fond memories of spending the holiday with family and friends and at least one bonfire.

So, I always try to make a paper doll for the 4th of July. For the last few years, that has been just shorts and a thematic t-shirt, but this year I wanted to do something different, so we have a patriotic  evening gown.

Inspiration for Today’s Paper Doll
Hmmm…. I drew this one super fast, so I’m not sure really where it came from. I didn’t want to do another pair of shorts and a t-shirt.

Specific Source Images: Nothing really this time!

Learn/See More
On the Blog: More Jewels & Gemstones paper dolls & more 4th of July Paper Dolls
Around the Internet: A fascinating History of Independence Day from PBS

Last Thoughts
I hope everyone has a wonderful and safe holiday!

Tomorrow, there will be a another paper doll outfit (a fantasy ballgown) for my Patrons. Join now!

 

A Super Pretty Empire Fantasy Gown

A pretty fantasy gown with an empire silhouette and over the shoulder puffed sleeves. Printable in color or black and white for coloring.

Black and White PDF | Color PDF | More Jewels & Gemstones Paper Dolls

Thoughts on Today’s Paper Doll
Occasionally, I just kinda want to draw a pretty dress. I mean, sometimes I like to draw complex things with nuance and stuff, but sometimes, I just want to draw a pretty dress. Years ago, I read an article about Oscar De La Renta (an amazing fashion designer) who when asked what he did, he said something like, I make pretty dresses.

And well, sometimes I want to draw pretty dresses. Nothing more, nothing less. Remember that I draw extra pretty dresses (and other things) for my Patrons.

Inspiration for Today’s Paper Doll
As I said above, I just kinda wanted a pretty dress. There’s something sort of 1980s fantasy princess happening here, I think, but I don’t recall a specific source of any kind.

Specific Source Images: Nothing that I remember.

Learn/See More
On the Blog: More Jewels & Gemstones paper dolls
Around the Internet: Hmmmm…. I’m not sure. If you want to see more pretty dresses, I do keep a board of Fantasy Clothing on Pinterest which is full of them.

Last Thoughts
Clearly, this isn’t my most “complex” blog post. Sometimes I think a lot about what I create and sometimes I just draw. Not everything has a complex history.

I’d like to take a moment here to thank everyone who pledges on Patreon. You make this little corner of the web possible and I am very grateful to you all.

By the way, at the moment, there’s a lot going on with my world, so please know that while I love the blog and I love creating paper dolls, I’m keeping a lot of plates spinning at the moment.