Today’s Printable Paper Doll Inspirations: Victorian Garters, Folk Art, and Layers, Layers, Layers
Sometimes when I draw a paper doll outfit, it is really an excuse to explore something artistically. In today’s fantasy paper doll gown, I wanted to practice drawing drapery and layers. One of the things I am always thinking about when it comes to paper doll designs is how different pieces will layer over each other. Clothing, after all, has bulk and drape.
There’s a second similar fantasy gown for the Ms. Mannequin series over on my Patreon page that everyone, not just Patrons, can download in color or black and white, so check that out over on my Patreon page and consider joining. It’s a great way to support the blog.
The corset designs are based on folk art designs which I love. I’ve always liked folk art florals and traditional crewel embroidery designs. The garters are, as I said above, based on Victorian garters which often closed with a clasp.
Meanwhile, please let me know what you think of today’s paper doll gown in a comment.
Continuing our folkloric fantasy week, today’s printable paper doll outfit is leggings with another lavishly decorated blouse. I decided to go with leggings, because I feel like fairy tale woodcutter’s daughters need practical clothing to hike through the woods in.
Or at least as practical as anything I design for paper dolls ever gets.
If you’re thinking, “But I need a doll to wear this stylish getup.”
Than I would recommend popping over to Monday’s post and picking up Faye there; however, any of the Mini-Maiden dolls can wear these outfits which is kinda fun. I think the Hazel paper doll from Beauty in Bloomers would be really cute in these outfits, plus I love her glasses. Alternatively, Faye paper dolls from Runic Adventures or Meet Faye would be alternatives to Monday’s Faye paper doll. Not to leave Greta or Isadora out of the picture, I think Greta from her Steampunk set would be fun or Isadora’s Medieval Fantasy or when she went to a ball would also work well.
A big part of why I create paper dolls who can exchange clothing is because I remember being a kid and having a favorite paper doll from a set and being super annoyed that my favorite paper doll couldn’t wear my favorite outfit.
Plus, I tend to think versatility is always best practice.
So, thinking in terms of versatility, what would you think would be the best paper doll to wear this outfit? Monday’s doll or is there another Mini-Maiden you would like to see rock some of these outfits.
On Monday, I posted Faye and the first of her folk art inspired outfits. Continuing our folk costumes inspired theme for paper dolls this week, today we have a fantasy paper doll outfit featuring a blouse and skirt. The blouse is decorated with a tulip inspired pattern and abstracted tulip decorations on the sleeves.
The skirt has a stencil inspired rose motif. Every paper doll needs a skirt covered in roses.
Both of these designs remind me a little of rosemaling. Rosemaling is a Norwegian technique of painted curves, spirals and floral designs. Back home in Alaska, there is a town called Petersburg which is very proud of it’s Scandinavian heritage. I remember some of the buildings having rosemaling on them.
So, I’m trying out Instagram, but I’m not that good at it. Still, follow me if you want. And there’s always Patreon if you want to help support PTP.
The blog is also on twitter @paperpersonas. I am sometimes reminded that my Blog is better at Social Media than I am.
So, what do you think of today’s outfit? Would you wear it? I think it’s lovely, but I probably can’t pull off the skirt or the blouse.
This week we have Faye dressed up in some fantasy clothes.
Some paper dolls are easier to write about than others. Often this has to do with how long ago I drew the paper doll and how much I remember about the original conception. I confess I try to make notes, but I don’t often succeed at that.
I seem to remember thinking of Little Red Ridinghood when I designed these garments, but really it could have been any maiden in the woods. It seems to me there’s always in fairy tales, a young woman who lives in the woods and then there’s a woodcutter or something else.
Often there’s an evil stepmother eventually who sends the maiden out to find something and we all know how that goes. Or she is kind to an old woman and then gets something like gems every time she speaks.
I think a bit part of the pleasure of black and white paper dolls is coloring them in. I wasn’t much into coloring books as a child, but I liked details when I did color. In these costumes, I tried to add details that a person would like to color.
Plus, I’ve always loved how lavished embroidered folk costumes looked.
Frankly, I hadn’t really thought much about outfits when I was drawing this set, so I had to try to make things cohesive with the colors. I’m not sure that worked great, but I’m still learning how to make this new format work.
I really need to learn to think less in “pieces” and more in “outfits.”
Oh well, live and learn!
Alice & The Mad Hatter Paper Dolls
Meanwhile, back at the ranch, I’m not sure what next week will bring. I may need a hiatus for a few weeks as I move and deal with some other stuff. I haven’t decided yet, but I will let y’all know as soon as I do.
As always, I’d love to hear that people think of the theme this week!
“But I don’t want to go among mad people,” Alice remarked.
“Oh, you can’t help that,” said the Cat: “we’re all mad here. I’m mad. You’re mad.”– Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, Chapter 6
I tried to pick out motifs from the book that made sense to make into clothing patterns. The black and white checkerboard pattern recalls a chess board. The cups and saucers are some of the best accessories I can think of for a Alice in Wonderland themed paper doll set. I also added hearts, roses and other symbols that make me think of the books.
On the left is an outfit for Alice from Monday including shorts and a underbust corset over a t-shirt. For the Mad Hatter from yesterday, there is a t-shirt and shorts with patched shaped like tea cups, though the fact they are shaped like tea cups might not be immediately obvious.
The black and white version is linked at the top of the post, as usual.
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I’m going to be moving in the next few weeks, so the blog may go on haitus for a few weeks. I just don’t know yet. So, baring in mind those moving parts, I thought I should give people heads up.
All righty, Dinner or Carriage dresses were worn to evening of later afternoon events that were formal, but not formal enough to warrant full-dress. Carriage dresses are often identifiable, because they are are more fussy and formal than promenade dresses.
The basic order of formality is a walking suit is less formal then a promenade toilette which is less formal than a carriage dress. A dinner dress is less formal than a evening dress, but may also be worn to evening events like come concerts or lectures. Opera was its own insane category.
Who ever said Victorian dressing was simple?
Continuing my 19th century fashion magazines descriptions, here is today’s:
A pale blue bolero jacket with pale blue sleeve puffs worn over a lavender corset with brass button accents. The neckline of the corset is filled with a pale blue high-necked blouse. The matching skirt is lavender and trimmed in pale green with three rows of blue ruffles. The hat is a bowler style trimmed with dark purple fabric roses and a wide blue ribbon band. Without the hat, this ensemble would be a lovely dinner attire and with the hat would be appropriate for afternoon visiting or carriage rides.
I have to confess, I have never been one of those people who romanticizes history. I’m pretty much certain that I like air conditioning, indoor plumbing and antibiotics too much to want to live in the past, but sometimes when I’m working on fantasy romanticized history pieces like this series, I start to think, “Hmmm… it might be fun to get to put on fancy dresses and go to a ball!”
So tell me in a comment what era of history you’d like to visit sometime. I’ve never been able to settle on one, but I think it might be fun to visit the Library of Alexandria or the Aldine Press in Venice.
(My library geek is coming out in those choices.)
Thoughts from all of you? What time period would you like to visit?
Today’s neo-Victorian costume for Monday’s Monica moves to a much lower rung of the formality ladder.
Today, Monica has a morning costume or a house dress. There really shouldn’t be a hat with this costume, because house dresses and morning dresses were not something women wore outside. Still, I drew a lot of hats with these outfits. So, I thought people might enjoy a spare hat today.
To once again channel my inner 19th century fashion magazine, here we go:
A lavender shirtwaist of the crispest cotton with a jabot at the neckline. The sleeves are long and go over the hands, replacing the need for gloves of any sort. Worn over the shirt waist is a decorative long corset of misty blue leather trimmed in pale green ribbon. The skirt is tightly fitted, as is the current fashion, and made to match the corset’s trimmings. There is a decorative band of tea green right before the knees and then asymmetrical layers of ruffles. The matching hat is green and trimmed in over-sized bows.
I am having way more fun writing these 19th century style descriptions of these outfits than I really should probably admit to most people.
Still, I kinda figure that if you’re reading the blog than you probably already know that I am a trifle quirky and such things shouldn’t bother you at all.
Black and white versions can be downloaded at the top of the post, as usual.
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My best-friend in highschool and middle-school was a curvy girl with a goth and punk style. Now, this might not seem like an odd thing to be today, but in Juneau, Alaska, in the early 2000s, this was practically unheard of. In the early days of internet commerce, buying a corset in Alaska required a willingness to shop online when the online options were limited to Amazon and a few catalog retailers. So, when I sat down to draw today’s curvy goth paper doll, I knew I wanted to celebrate my old friend and her willingness to break the mold.
Despite my interest in alt-fashion, I have never really wanted to wear it in public, but I respect people whose style choices are much more adventurous than mine.
Not that it is hard to be more adventurous than the girl who wears white shirts and cardigans to work nearly every day.
Anyway, when I work on designing something for a fashion genre, I try very hard to be as authentic as possible. Of course, as an outsider to any cultural group, it is nearly impossible to capture all the nuances, but I wanted for my goth paper doll to have a nice range to mix and match pieces which could also share with other paper dolls. After all, maybe she’ll want to wear a sundress or some thigh high platform boots one day.
Color schemes for anything goth is going to be a lot of black (obviously) and I didn’t want to try to really break the mold here, so I stuck with my old friends favorite colors- black, red, and purple. Lavender was a Victorian color of mourning, so that seemed appropriate. Though the Victorians took their mourning culture way seriously.
While my natural tendency is to avoid patterns, I wanted at least one patterned piece in the bunch and a corset seemed like an obvious choice. The skull and roses pattern is mirrored in her purse and the limited color palette means I think it can go with either skirt.
I have always loved patent leather, so the boots were an obvious place to make some shiny-texture. I am out of practice with that technique though and it took three or four tries to get it right. I’m still not in love with the outcome, but I’ll live.
Looking for more goth paper dolls? I have a whole tag for gothic fashion, though looking through it, I confess I thought I had more gothic paper dolls.
Hmmm…. Maybe I need to draw some more, because there’s not a lot there.
Should I draw more Gothic Fashion paper dolls?
Yes, I really like that style. (77%, 37 Votes)
No, I'm not that into Gothic. (17%, 8 Votes)
Actually, I'd rather see something that I'll tell you in a comment. (6%, 3 Votes)
Total Voters: 48
As always, I always love to hear that you think of the paper doll!
Hope is based on the styles at the end of the 18th century. So, something major happened around the 1789 in France. It was, for those who weren’t asleep in high school history class, the French Revolution. To say that “everthing changed” wouldn’t be an understatement and the ripples of the events in France spread across Europe in dramatic ways. It is tempting when looking at the end of the 18th century to simply assume that after 1789 everyone just jumped into Empire styles and that was the end of it, but the reality is that there was a very slow evolution to the high waisted gowns we think of as “empire” or “Regency” dress.
So, I was less interested in worrying about the Empire look and much more interested in the every transitional styles that are easily forgotten and often ignored.
This all brings us rather neatly to Hope. Hope is our paper doll model for the later part of the 1700s. Her dresses will never get up the high waisted styles that characterized the transition into Empire. Rather, I think of her as being a woman of means right before everything gets radicalized. And, for her sake, let us assume she lives in England which was always behind on the fashions a bit anyway and a much safer place to be than France at the end of the 18th century. They don’t call it the Reign of Terror for nothing, after all.
Hope’s hair is done up in a style known as coiffure à l’enfant. This was a style popularized by Marie-Antoinette in the early 1780s. The style is a frizzy halo of hair with several longer strands curled, braided or left straight. Here is a portrait that shows off the hair style from the Met and here is a fashion plate featuring it from the V&A. I have to confess that I am not totally pleased with her hair. I fear that it looks a little bit too “mad scientist” for my comfort.
Moving away from her hair for a moment, Hope has undergarments, of course, and then a gown known as a Redingote. Redingote’s started their lives as actual riding coats, but eventually transformed into women’s gowns which were coat like and then cut away to reveal the petticoat underneath. The word “redingote” is believed to be a French transliteration of the English term “riding coat”. Hope’s redingote was based on this gown from LACMA circa 1790. The term “redingote” sticks around into the early 20th century as a term of long coats.
I think that’s all the sources I need to list for Hope. I might have forgotten something, but I think that’s everything. Next Friday, there will be the last set of outfits for the 18th Century Pixie Series all from the later part of the 18th century.