Sporty Pixie named Adannaya

Like Jaunty Summer Styles and Minimalism, today’s printable paper doll was the direct result of me purchasing a bunch of fashion magazines in March. Adannaya is rocking the “sporty” look which is very popular. Sort of high fashion meets gym wear and if that seems like an odd match to you then you are not alone (it seems an odd match to me too). Her hair is based on this fantastic updo which I pinned to my hair board on Pinterest. Lurking around my Pinterest boards provides sneak peaks on what I am currently obsessed with. Feel free to follow me.

Anyway, the name Adannaya is from West Africa, Igbo to be specific, and means “Her Father’s daughter” according to Behind the Name. I’m sure I’ve never used the name before. I liked that I could track it to a specific culture. I think calling a name “African” is just as absurd as calling a name “European”. There are about a hundred major African languages, so I wasn’t going to use a name if I couldn’t trace it back to the root language. For Adannaya the root language is is Igbo, mostly spoken in southeastern Nigeria. Someone who knows more than me about the region would know if it was a common name or not, I have no idea, but I liked how it sounded.

Black and White fantasy paper doll

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Anyhow, I’m traveling today, so I’ve pre-scheduled this to rule in my absence. I’ve nearly worked my way through my backlog that I spent so much of February and March building. I suppose this means I’ll be drawing a fair bit over the next few weeks trying to get caught up again. What I really need is another snow closing… but I doubt that’s going to happen. :)

Jaunty Summer Styles

Marisole Monday and Friends Logo and Link to free printable Marisole Monday paper doll So, spring has finally come to Alabama, it feels like. I enjoy the changing seasons of fall and spring. Also, I’ve been reading some 1920′s clothing catalogs and they use words like “jaunty” in their descriptions and I think we should bring it back as a fashion term.

Today’s paper doll set, which like my Mia paper dolls from earlier this month (here in black and white and here in color), comes out of the March fashion magazines which publish the new spring fashions of the year. I decided to do a little bit more “girly” for this paper doll set, focusing on the feminine styles that are popular right now.

My one regret is that I didn’t do more pieces with patterns on this paper doll set, but instead focused on the shapes. I sort of wish I’d done something in color blocking or even stripes to mix things up a bit. Still, I love the dresses and the purses which I think offer some interesting variety. I always carry the exact same purse nearly every day, but my paper dolls can afford to be a little more adventurous. Plus money is no object when the fashions are all made of paper.

Thumbnail link image printable paper doll
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I’m not totally pleased how the ruffled shift dress came out (far left). I like it, but I have mixed feelings about the execution, on the other hand I really like how both the other dresses came out and the high low t-shirt. I think I’ll come around to the dress once it has been colored.

I decided to use Magnolia, one of my new Marisole Monday paper dolls who I’ve decided to rename since someone pointed out that the Magnolia name is already taken. Suggest an “M” name in the comments and I’ll consider it. Right now, I’m split between Monica, Maureen and Mira, though I do think Mira is too close to Mia.

Marisole Monday & Friends: On Future Streets…

Marisole Monday and Friends Logo and Link to free printable Marisole Monday paper doll So, last week I was feel very meh about this paper doll set.

Now, I’m rather in love with it.

I have a very on again, off again relationship with my paper dolls sometimes. I mean, if I was dating this blog, I would definitely declare the relationship highly unhealthy. As it is, the Blog is a demanding associate.

Anyway, I have decided on a name for this new “face” of Marisole. I’m calling her Magnolia, after the magnolia trees that aren’t blooming at all in the dead of winter in Alabama, but which are beautiful anyway. She’s stuck in the Other Friends category though until I decide if I like her enough to draw more sets for her.


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I went back and forth and back and forth about Magnolia’s skin tone. I wanted to something darker than my standard Marisole skintone. I’ve posted before about my Skintone Pallette which I use to select skin tones for the blog. Now I was going to go with my darkest color which is #3b2219 which, as you can see, is a very dark brown. The trouble with #3b2219 is that it makes seeing the black lines on the drawing nearly impossible, especially when you print out the paper doll.

So, I lightened the skin-tone to a new shade which is #502e22 which I like a lot better, though it lacks the richness of the darker brown. I want to use #3b2219 more, but I am having trouble with it allowing the line-work to show up. I need to think about how to fix that problem in the future.

One last thing, I finally got the PDF of Seagulls and Seaside In Color fixed. Never let it be said I don’t get things done… eventually. :)

Oh and before I forget, I want to wish a happy President’s Day to those celebrating here in the United States.

And We Visit the Future! (Also, some comments on dead gerbils…)

Marisole Monday and Friends Logo and Link to free printable Marisole Monday paper doll Today’s Marisole Monday & Friends paper doll is a little futuristic and a little cyberpunk. She has a new face which I like I think, though I’m not sure about it. Drawing new faces for Marisole is a struggle for me. Drawing for Marisole at all right now is a struggle for me.

In fact, I kinda hate Marisole right now.

Don’t get me wrong…I’m proud of the 96 or so versions of Marisole I have drawn and I’m pleased she’s been a ninja, a fairy and an alien (not to mention plenty of other things), but lately I’ve been feeling uninspired when it comes to her. I think a big part of my frustration is that I drew this base doll over four years ago which is a long time to be drawing for the same doll. Working on her is like going back in time to a style I drew a long time ago and don’t anymore.

Some days, that feels very odd.


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Before anyone freaks out, I’m not saying I’m not going to continue with Marisole style dolls, I just feel very much in a slump. The wheel in spinning, as they say, but the gerbil may be dead.

Advice for getting out of slumps, anyone?

Marisole Vintage Evening Gowns In Colors…

Marisole Monday and Friends Logo and Link to free printable Marisole Monday paper doll Last week, I posted this paper doll set in black and white for coloring. I promised I would talk a little about each of the gowns and where they came from.

I need to learn to streamline my method for dealing with elaborate florals, or I need to never do one ever again. Normally coloring a paper doll set takes about 2 to 4 hours, at most. Sometimes longer, but only if I take a lot of breaks and am doing a lot of other stuff. If I have my colors picked out and I’m on a roll, I can do the set in about an hour when I’m really on the ball, though formatting, saving and other detail work takes longer. That single floral dress took me nearly an hour, by itself, to color. NEVER AGAIN.

(I say that and I’m already thinking of other cool florals I might draw… I have a problem, people.)

Okay, so here’s the paper doll in full color:


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Let’s talk about where each gown came from. The floral gown, the blue gown and the red gown are all from the V&A in London.

The blue gown is based on this red dress from 1957. The red evening dress was drawn from this evening gown by Hardy Amies was made right after fabric rationing was lifted in England (1949), so lacks the layers of lace and silk that were common in evening gowns on this period. I love the simplicity and shape of the dress. The last dress from the V&A is my favorite, the floral evening gown made in Paris and worn by the wife of the British Ambassador. I tried, but I don’t think I captured the beauty of the rose patterned skirt and layered bodice.

The last pink dress comes from The Met, known as “Tree” this gown was designed by Charles James. Of all of the gowns I drew, I feel like this one didn’t work. My style of flat color just can’t capture the layering of the gowns beautiful fabric. Liana did a beautiful version of Charles james Butterfly dress on her blog several years ago which I think captures his work better than I did here.

Okay, that’s everything. Happy MLK Day to those in the US who are celebrating like me.

Latanya, The First Pixie Paper Doll of the New Year

I am excited to introduce everyone to Latanya, the first Pixie paper doll of the New Year. I drew her last year, technically, but that’s not really so uncommon for me. It can take months (years…) for a paper doll to move from my sketchbook onto my blog. I’ve had a request to do a full paper

Also, considering how slow I am at getting things done… it might be a year before its finished.

Anyway, today we have Latanya rocking out in some fun fantasy attire. Her colors remind me of autumn leaves and crisp fall days. I am really adoring her curls and the pattern on her dress which I am very proud of. I am trying to draw more patterns. I say that every year…

Black and White fantasy paper doll

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My Drawing/Contest closes tonight at midnight. So, if you haven’t entered and would like too, please do so today. I’ll contact/announce the winner tomorrow. :) By the way, I haven’t responded to any of the answers, because I didn’t want to skew the results. I have read them all and I appreciate everyone’s honesty. Winner will be decided using a random number generator.

Marisole Monday in Vintage Gowns

Marisole Monday and Friends Logo and Link to free printable Marisole Monday paper doll Nearly a year ago, I was asked to draw a paper doll of 1950s evening gowns.

Initially, I didn’t do it, because I couldn’t find any 1950′s evening gowns that I liked. Eventually I felt guilty enough to check out the V&A and the Met, both have strong collections from the 1950s.

I told the requester that I was working on the paper doll and asked what the hair should look like. The immediate answer was, “Like Mine.”

“Well,” I said, “Micro-braids with streaks weren’t really a thing in 1950 something, but okay. If that’s what you want…”

So, we have Marisole here, rocking her micro-braids with some couture 1950′s evening gowns to show off. As inspired by Liana’s comment a few days ago about stories, I offer the following scenario to justify this strange juxtaposition:

    Marisole, working as the fashion editor of a major publication, has been invited to the Met’s annual gala whose theme, this year, is the designers of the 1950s. Eager to make an impression on the red carpet, she’s choosen to wear a vintage gown from the period. I am sure she will be the hit of the party when she arrives. :)

By the way, in a totally unrelated note, that floral pattern on the full skirted gown was the most complicated floral pattern I have ever done. I’ll rant more about coloring next week when I post the colored version. All I have to say is that normally, a paper doll takes me four to six hours to color, layout and get set up for blog. This paper doll… took longer. Much Longer.


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I will talk about the sources for each gown next week when I post it in color.

Also, my little drawing/contest is open until midnight on the 15th. Feel free to enter.

Marisole Monday and Friends: Queen of Dusk

Marisole Monday and Friends Logo and Link to free printable Marisole Monday paper doll I confess I named this paper doll after I decided on the color scheme, so it doesn’t make as much sense in black and white as it does when the doll is fully colored. I thought about making her another princess, but then I decided that Queens have power. Power seems like a good thing. So, she’s a Queen not a Princess. (Unless you want her to be a Princess, in which case, go for it, I say.)

Having recently watched the first Hobbit film with my Mother to get ready to go see the sequel, I feel that I can say these costumes feel far more Elf like than Hobbit or Dwarf. Also the new first of the Hobbit movies felt very manic.

I like the layers on the dresses, but I’m not totally pleased with the shoes. Still… Not everything has to be perfect, I suppose.

Someone requested the lute. That’s why she has a lute. I am not going to go down in history as the worlds best lute artist. Still, it was fun to draw my slightly deformed insturement. I wish I could recall who asked for a lute… If it was you, drop me a comment. It’s bugging me now.

Anyway… Um… Here’s a paper doll.


Thumbnail link image printable paper doll
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Florals & Stripes & Ruffles in Full Color

Thumbnail of the printable paper doll clothes Yesterday, I posted this one in black and white. Today, she’s going up in color. I’m not sure if I like doing this whole… one day black and white next day color thing. It sort of defeats the point of being able to reduce workload. I might start spacing them out a week, depending on how things seems to work out as I get into the crazier time of the year for me.

I went back and forth and back and forth about so much with this paper dolls color scheme. I wanted her to be stylish, but not overtly girly. I couldn’t decide between pinks and blues and then I originally conceived of the blouse as being burnt orange with teal flowers. Yeah… that wasn’t my greatest idea ever.

In the end, I settled on a color scheme that was cheerful (which I think we need on these grey days of winter) and mix and matched pretty well, though not as perfectly as some of my other paper dolls have done. There’s really only nine outfit options here, and I think I’d like to do more, but the dolls are fairly large and that limits how much clothing I can fit on a page with them. I have been thinking about doing some sets that are “clothing only” as I have always liked clothes more than dolls, but I don’t want to disappoint people who feel otherwise.

Paper doll outfits or dolls? That’s always the most complicated of questions, isn’t it?

Full color Popper Paper Doll
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Ruffles & Florals & Stripes & Afro-Puffs & Printable Paper Dolls

Thumbnail of the printable paper doll clothes For my second Bodacious and Buxom printable paper doll, I wanted to do something modern. Most of my readers know my love of fashion magazines and I wanted to create a mix and match set that felt contemporary and contained things I could imagine a stylish girl wearing when she walked down the street.

So many “modern” paper doll sets are very very frumpy and I try very hard to avoid frumpy when I make my paper dolls.

Anyway, people have probably already noticed I have a thing for afro puffs. I just think they are SO cute, though I have been told recently by someone whose far more familiar with black hairstyles than I am that they are not currently an IN thing to do with your hair.

Still, I think afro puffs are cute and I can draw them if I want too.

Full color Popper Paper Doll
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Before I forget, I would like to wish a Happy Yule to any of my readers who are celebrating tonight. (Someday, I may tell the story of me and badly chosen shoes and a lot of snow and the search for a suitable Yule log. It was um… an interesting high school adventure.)

Also, while I was wandering around the web, I came across a blog I’d never seen before called Paper Doll World. It’s a fun blog devoted to one of my favorite topics (paper dolls) and the dolls are very cute. They remind me of some of the dolls I drew as a child, which is fun.

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