Today’s paper doll post is a big skirted princess fantasy dress- one of my favorite styles to explore. I’ve done quite a few of these dresses for the B pose ladies before. You might remember my fall steampunk inspired one from a few weeks ago.
There are genre’s I come back to over and over again. Some of them are themes like post-apocalyptic or fairies. Others are more like fashion styles. On of them is what I call “Big Skirted Princess Dresses.”
One thing you must know about me is that I was a child of 1980s and 1990s. That means, I grew up with Disney movies like Beauty and the Beast and The Little Mermaid (which terrified me so much as a child I refused to watch it again until I was in my 30s.) I also grew up with paper dolls of these movies and the paper dolls of Peck-Grande who made the most amazing fairy tale paper dolls. Seriously. Check out their Beauty and the Beast paper doll or Sleeping Beauty paper doll. Also big skirted over the top dresses were sort of a thing in the 1980s and early 1990s.
So, in my head, fairy tale dresses with huge skirts and crazy decorations are just what princesses wear. Plus the big skirts give lots of room for added decoration.
Today’s foray into the big-skirted-princess-gown genre has a bit of a steampunk vibe. I really wanted this dress to feel autumnal, just like I think the other big-skirted dresses I have done feel like they are from other seasons. This one was my winter dress and this one was my summer/spring dress.
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In the continuing epic of big skirted dresses, I offer up this princess ball gown. I imagine it comes from the same world as this dress and this dress. Now that I have three, maybe I should make it a collection? I am very conflicted about that idea, because I’m not sure I’ll draw more.
Okay, I probably will draw more, because I love me over the top ball gowns. The more wild, the better.
Today’s gown is partly inspired by dresses from Japan that I learned about from Liana’s paper doll blog years ago- color-dresses. They are these completely over the top colorful ball gowns worn to the reception after the wedding. Liana’s blog has the proper Japanese word for them, but I am hesitant to copy it, because I don’t know any Japanese. As I understand it (and I am not an expert on Japanese wedding customs), the bride often wears a kimono for the ceremony, a white wedding dress for part of the reception and then a colorful dress like this for the evening party. The gowns are wild and wonderful and remind me of what a princess ball gown might be.
I love them.
I would like to point out that today’s down is more restrained than a lot of these gowns. Here’s a few more that I adored. Seriously, this might be the best rabbit hole to go down ever if you love over the top gowns and who doesn’t love those?
To go with the evening gown, there’s a little clutch bag, but I confess the dress is really the fun part of today’s post.
I enjoy drawing evening dresses, but after a while I get tired of the strapless simple gowns. I find I am attracted to evening gowns with interesting shapes or draping. I really want a dress that I think would be fun to draw, as much as anything else. I totally realize that “fun to draw” doesn’t mean “flattering to wear”, but I am completely cool with that.
Paper dolls, as I have often observed, never complain about their clothing.
Friday there will be a circus themed set, which I think is pretty exciting.
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Today’s Printable Paper Doll Inspirations: Fantasy Gowns
Today’s Marisole Monday post is princess paper doll ball gown with a full skirt and double puffed sleeves. It’s pretty over the top, though not the most over the top thing I have ever drawn.
I love drawing what I think of a traditional princess paper doll ball gown. You know the type with big skirts and puffy sleeves. The kind of gowns you imagine being worn only in cartoon movies with musical numbers and never by actual people in the real world who need to get through doorways.
All paper dolls are about fantasy to some degree. After all, much of the armor I draw wouldn’t protect you very well and plenty of the gowns I draw would be hard to walk it or move in, but I still draw them. I do care about some levels of realism. I like the for my paper doll clothing to ‘make sense’ in so much as, I want them to actual be able to exist.
It matters to me that layers layer properly and such. Fabric looks like fabric. You know, those sorts of things.
But practicality belongs somewhere other than in the realm of paper dolls.
This dress went through three color schemes or so, before I decided I like this yellow, blue and orange option.
Today’s Printable Paper Doll Inspirations: Prom Season
It is prom season and while I am not in an age group that is going to prom, I have noticed a strong trend towards crop tops and full skirts.
While I did enjoy the proms I went to, I will openly confess that there is no force in the universe that could make me want to go back to high school. That was just a dreadful part of my youth.
While I was helping a close friend shop for a wedding dress, I noticed a lot of prom dress styles were showing off the midriff. This isn’t a new thing, by the way, midriff revealing evening wear dates back to the 1940s- here’s one example from the movie Lady Eve. It’s a hard dress to find a decent picture of, I confess. There’s also one in Casablanca, but I can’t seem to find a picture of that dress. Sigh.
Anyway, the point is the showing of your midriff in evening wear is not a new thing, but certainly hasn’t been in style for a few decades. It certainly wasn’t “in” when I was in high school heading off to Prom. That was the era of dressed based on the movie Titanic’s Jump Dress and also styles like this from Buffy the Vampire Slayer.
Seriously, I knew at least three people who wore short satiny dresses under sheer layers to formals in high school.
I had way to much fun drawing the huge oversized floral on the skirt of this outfit. I really wanted something that the full skirt to accommodate, so giant floral seemed like it would be fun.
Other then that, I’m just glad I got to share this dress before Prom season was completely over, though I strongly suspect it has mostly wrapped up by now.
So, tell me fearless readers, did you go to Prom? I did, but not my Senior year. We had a joint Junior and Senior prom at my school. I also went as a Sophomore, because I was invited by a Senior. That was actually the most fun one since many of my friends in High School were older then me.
Not bad memories, but, as I said above, no force on this planet could make me want to go back to high school.
Today’s Printable Paper Doll Inspirations: Evening Gowns and Boots’ Paper Doll Series Catwalk Couture
I think one of the great benefits of the internet is that it has created a world where people are willing to share their work. I try to visit all the active paper doll blogs I am aware of and comment on them as much as I can.
Boots has been working on a Catwalk Couture paper doll fashion series where she has been drawing the designs of some of the great contemporary designers. I was inspired by her work to create an evening gown that could have come off the runway.
I was heavily influenced by the designs of Marchesa one of my favorite evening gown designers.
Hazel’s hair is based on this beautiful natural hair up-dos like this one and this one. I’m worried it looks less like a natural up-do and more like a turban, but maybe I’m just being hyper critical.
Since I am not black, I always feel a little self-conscious when I draw things like natural hair styles.
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Here is part of Elizabeth’s request, “Very difficult decision to decide on what to ask for but I finally picked out for dress inspiration this white and gold dress from the 1950s Empress Sissi movie series starring Romy Schneider. I really like the white and gold color scheme though a crimson and gold color scheme could be fun too.”
To go with her paper doll ball gown, I designed some boots in part inspired by button-up boots of the Victorian era. Her neckline is a low off the shoulder heart line. White and gold is, of course, the color scheme Elizabeth asked for. I had a lot of fun making it in white and gold, but I think a pink and green color scheme would be beautiful as well.
Today’s Printable Paper Doll Inspirations: Huge Skirted Ballgowns and The Colors of the Sunset
I love big skirted ballgowns. I love crazy over the top big skirted princess paper doll ball gowns.
Obviously, I am expressing this love today.
Another love of mine, from when I was a kid, are off the shoulder dresses. Generally, I blame this on being a child of the 1980s.
This ballgown was actually part of a set of two big skirted fantasy gowns I designed back in 2015. Yes, that’s right, 2015. A long long time ago, I confess.
Anyway, I found them again and I hated one of them. This one I thought, “You know, that’s not bad.”
Now, the color scheme it had back then involved lime green and orange, so that had to go. Once I had it re-colored, I actually thought it was pretty beautiful, so it wasn’t a hard decision to repost it.
So, how do people feel about big skirted ball gowns?
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