Let’s Visit the 1970s & Get Some Clothing

A set of printable paper doll clothing from the 1970s. A pair of tops and pants from home sewing patterns of the era.

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It’s taken a while for me to start liking the 1970s as a fashion era. For a long time, I just wasn’t that into it. So much of the clothing from the 1970s felt clown like to me. Over the top.

Which is odd when you consider my other favorite eras are all about over the top. I mean, have you seen the 18th century? Over the top is kinda the defining concept of the Rococo era.

What I’ve slowly been realizing is that while a lot of 1970s fashion is not to my taste, there are pockets that I simply adore. The folkloric stuff is right up my alley and I have a strange fondness for a lot of the more absurd platform shoes and the black power African influenced stuff.

Today’s paper doll designs are from home sewing patterns of the era. Sewing patterns tend to be closer to everyday wear than designer things you might have seen on the runway.

Pants became totally acceptable for women to wear in the 1970s. This was a slow process that started way back in the 1920s with lounging pajamas. So, these pants are from Simplicity 9374. They have a laced up fly (which is false) and a back zipper.

Front flys on pants were still seen as a little too risque.

The shirts are from McCall’s 5021. One of my favorite things about clothing from the 1970s is the embroidery. I love embroidery on clothing. It’s also back in style which makes me giddy as a schoolgirl. 

It just occurred to me as I wrote that that “giddy as a schoolgirl” is a trifle sexist. Hmm… I’ll have to think about that. 

Meanwhile, let me know what you think of 1970’s clothing in a comment. Do you like it? Hate it? Is there a historical era you’d like to see me draw for the new series? 

And, if you want to help out the blog, consider joining Patreon. Every little bit helps. 

Need a Doll to wear today’s outfit? All the A Pose Dolls & Clothing

The Poppets Paper Dolls Get 1927 Dresses for School and Parties


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Today’s Printable Paper Doll Inspirations: Montgomery Ward Fashions of the Twenties
A printable 1927 paper doll dress with matching hat from paperthinpersonas.com. The dress is a "school dress" with a blouse and matching pleated skirt. The hat is a cloche with contrast trim.

printable 1927 paper doll dress with matching hat from paperthinpersonas.com. The dress is a "school dress" with a blouse and matching pleated skirt. The hat is a cloche with contrast trim to color.

Today I am doing something special and posting two Poppet’s dresses- a school dress and a party dress from 1927. First up, the school dress.

When I was a kid, I loved the idea of a school dress. Despite my mother’s horror stories of wearing patent leather shoes to school, I imagined the idea of having a school dress as something very romantic and old fashioned.

Despite realizing that there’s nothing magical about having special dresses for different activities, I still love the concept.

As anyone who has been following this blog for any length of time has probably figured out, I love the idea of changing clothes several times a day for different events.

I do realize in reality, this would be a total pain in the butt, but hey, it’s a neat idea.

So, I knew I wanted to find a school dress for the Poppets for their 1920’s children’s wardrobe collection. This choice is from the Montgomery Ward catalog of 1927.

The pleated skirt makes me think school dress even though there’s no other reason to associate it with such.

I picked out the hat, because I thought the detailing was similar to the dresses piping details. The dress and the hat both come from Montgomery Ward Fashions of the Twenties. I don’t highly reommend this book, unless you already have a lot of 1920s books. It’s just from 1927, so it doesn’t really give you the range of years that some other books do.


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Today’s Printable Paper Doll Inspirations: Montgomery Ward Fashions of the Twenties

A printable paper doll party dress from 1927. The dress is trimmed in ribbons and roses.

A printable paper doll party dress from 1927. The dress is trimmed in ribbons and roses.

When I was going through the Poppet’s 1920s Children’s Wardrobe Collection, I noticed that they didn’t have a party dress. I poured through the different books I have until I found this one in the book Montgomery Ward Fashions of the Twenties.

Something about this dress made me think of spring time, even though outside the weather is chilly and there was even snow a few weeks ago. Snow in Alabama is a big deal. Everyone buys milk and eggs. Even I buy milk and eggs and I don’t even like milk or eggs very much.

I digress.

The point is that I decided to color this dress pale green, because I thought it seemed like a summery dress. The ruched waistline was tough to draw and I am not sure I was entirely successful. I really had fun drawing the ruffles.

I like drawing ruffles.

Tomorrow, I’ll be sharing some clothing probably? I mean, I haven’t really decided yet what to share about the new series. So, I should get on that. 🙂 Friday will be B&B Sorceress gowns.

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

Poppet’s 1920s Apron Dress: A Paper Doll Dress to Print in Color or Black and White


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Today’s Printable Paper Doll Inspirations: Montgomery Ward Fashions of the Twenties
A paper doll dress based on a 1927 design for an 'apron dress' with a matching hat in blue and coral pink. Free to print from paperthinpersonas.com.

A paper doll dress based on a 1927 design for an 'apron dress' with a matching hat to color. Free to print from paperthinpersonas.com.

First off, Happy Hanukkah to anyone, like me, who is celebrating. It’s the second night tonight and my menorah is burning in the window. No Hanukkah paper dolls this year, which I am a little sad about, but I didn’t manage to get one done in time.

As I mentioned Monday, all the latest 1920s Poppets stuff comes from Montgomery Ward Fashions of the Twenties by JoAnne Olian. This dress was described as an ‘apron dress’ which is a term I’ve seen as far back as the Edwardian era to describe dresses with that flap tabard like thing in the front. This one was one of the less expensive dresses on the page, so I suspect it is meant to be more of a home dress, rather than a school dress.

I loved the piping in the design and the patterned contrast cuffs and pockets.

The hat was on a different page and might not have been worn with the dress, but I really enjoy drawing hats and I thought it was awfully cute.

If you pop over to my Patreon page you’ll find a pastel based version of today’s 1927 apron dress that you might like better. I was fully divided on which version I preferred, I confess.

So, if you like this than check out the rest of the 1920s Children’s Wardrobe collection which is full of 1920s goodness. There will be another Poppet outfit on Friday- it’s a fantasy ice skating toilette.

Tomorrow, there will be a post about the future of the blog! With pictures! Tune if you like. Otherwise, I shall see you Friday.

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

The Poppets 1920s Pajamas for a Printable Paper Doll


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Today’s Printable Paper Doll Inspirations: Montgomery Ward Fashions of the Twenties
A pair of 1920's pajamas based on designs sold by the Montgomery Ward department store in 1927 for the Poppets printable paper dolls from paperthinpersonas.com in color.

A pair of 1920's pajamas based on designs sold by the Montgomery Ward department store in 1927 for the Poppets printable paper dolls from paperthinpersonas.com..

One of the books I treated myself to recently was Dover’s Montgomery Ward Fashions of the Twenties by JoAnne Olian. It was on sale as I recall. Anyway, the book is fashions from one year- 1927 and all from Montgomery Ward which was a higher end department store. So, this next batch of Poppet’s 1920s Children’s Wardrobe collection  all comes from this book.

Today’s addition to the 1920s Children’s Wardrobe collection is a pair of pajamas. One of my Patrons asked for Pajamas a while ago and I realized I’ve done very few pajamas over the years. So, here we are. Pajamas!

This week will be all Poppets paper doll posts. I have a bunch done and I wanted to share them. In fact, this whole month will be a bit random, because I am clearing out the backlog I have of current paper doll series.

In January, all the of the current paper doll series will cease updating and a new series, as of yet unnamed, will take their place. I know this is a big deal and I know there are probably questions.

But at the moment, I have limited answers.

Two things I can promise:

1. The blog is not going anywhere.
2. None of the old content is being erased.

So, I’ll share more as I sort it out in my head, but until then, please feel free to ask questions in the comments and I hope everyone enjoys today’s foray into the 1920s.

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

Mini-Maiden’s 1930’s Evening Gown & Shoes


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Today’s Printable Paper Doll Inspirations: Sears Fashions from 1934 and these shoes from the Met

Today’s paper doll is post is the last one for a the next little while. I am not only out of paper doll content that is finished, but I am also in the midst of finals for my graduate program. So, as of Friday, the blog will be on hiatus until December 11th and the end of the semester.

Meanwhile, today’s paper doll dress is a 1934 evening gown. The major reference book for today’s dress was Everyday Fashions of the Thirties As Pictured in Sears Catalogs from Dover Publications. The decoration at the neckline would have been a removable clip on piece, according to the catalog description. These slinky evening dresses are really pretty fun (though would not be very flattering on me). The sleeves are two tiered flutter sleeves which, now that I mention it, remind me of the sleeves that my friend had on her wedding dress.

The shoes are a pair of high evening pumps from The Met museum based on this pair. I was super happy that I could locate shoes from the same year as the dress. It always makes me excited when that happens, though of course, people keep clothing for longer than I year. In fact, right now, I am wearing three year old shoes, two year old pants and a year old sweater.

Meanwhile, I hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving if you celebrated and, as mentioned, I’ll be laying low until my school work if finished. So, no paper dolls will go up until the 11th of December. There will be a “formal” hiatus announcement on Friday.

(I try not to just disappear on you all. I know that’s kinda annoying and sometimes people send me emails worried about me, so I’d hate for anyone to worry.)

As always, I love to hear comments or, if you’d like to support the blog further than become a patron.

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

Marisole Monday’s Printable 15th Century Dress


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Today’s Printable Paper Doll Inspirations: Boccace, Des cleres et nobles femmes, traduction française anonyme circa 1488-1496, Boccaccio, Des cas des nobles hommes et femmes circa 1475 and Maria Maddalena Baroncelli Christus circa 1470.
A 15th century dress for a paper doll with a headdress based on manuscript illustrations to print and play with from paperthinpersonas.com

A 15th century dress for a paper doll with a headdress based on manuscript illustrations to print and color from paperthinpersonas.com.

Today’s Marisole Monday paper doll gown is a 15th century dress. Women’s fashions of the 15th century included a long gown worn over a kirtle or under-gown. These gowns were in a high-waisted style with fullness over the belly decorated with a super wide belt. The belt often had a decorated buckle.

The deep low neck was enough to reveal the decorated front of the kirtle beneath. The neckline was sometime filled in with a sheer linen partlet.

I used a partlet on today’s gown, but getting the transparency was tough. So, it’s not as transparent as it should be.

This headdress is known as a hennin. It was usually cone shaped or a flattened cone. They got pretty extreme over the course of the century, I have to say. If you think of the stereotypical princess than you are thinking of the hennin headdress.

The sources of today’s 15th century dress were Boccace, Des cleres et nobles femmes, traduction française anonyme circa 1488-1496, Boccaccio, Des cas des nobles hommes et femmes circa 1475 and Maria Maddalena Baroncelli Christus circa 1470. One is a painting and the rest are manuscript pages, mostly from France.

I really wanted to play around with color as well. The colors in today’s gown are based on Boccace, Des cleres et nobles femmes, traduction française anonyme. I really loved the green, red and the blue belt. There’s more images of 15th century dress on my 15th century Pinterest board.

The hardest thing to draw for today’s paper doll outfit was the hennin headdress. I must have re-sketched the angle of that headdress a dozen times. The drape on the headdress should be transparent, but I didn’t really want to try

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

A Pair of 1960s Vintage Paper Doll Dresses for the Ms. Mannequin Paper Dolls


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Today’s Printable Paper Doll Inspirations: Simplicity 7203 and Simplicity 7852

A pair of 1960s vintage paper doll dresses based on sewing pattern covers from 1968 and 1967.

A pair of 1960s vintage paper doll dresses based on sewing pattern covers from 1968 and 1967. Free to print from paperthinpersonas.com.

The pattern covers for Simplicity 7203 and Simplicity 7852 inspired today’s 1960s vintage paper doll dresses. The dress on the left comes from Simplicity 7852. Described as an a-line dress, the pattern offered two different colors and sleeve lengths. I chose the bib and contrasting collar for my paper doll version.

I created Simplicity 7203’s tent dress on the right. The tent dress fell in a triangle away from the body and often featured a front pleat.

Because I wanted to showcase the transition between the 1960s and 1970s, I chose the stand collar and pockets to go with my tent dress which isn’t really as wide as maybe it should be. Drawing 1960s vintage paper doll dresses isn’t as easy as sometimes I think it should be.

Also, can we pause and consider the name “tent dress”? Has anyone ever thought to themselves, “I want to look great! I’ll go put on a tent”? I mean… really?

I digress.

As some of you know, I love the Vintage Pattern Wiki whenever I go looking for vintage pattern covers to draw. Pattern Covers provide a window into what the more everyday fashions of the decade might look like. Sure, I adore Yves St. Lauren and Rudi Gernreich, but most people couldn’t afford those looks. Plus, Rudi Gernreich could be a bit out there.

So, my question for all of you is this- Would you wear something called a “tent dress”? Let me know in a comment!

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

Poppet Paper Doll’s Get a 1920s Coat to Wear With Matching Hats


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Today’s Printable Paper Doll Inspirations: 1920s Fashions from B. Altman & Company

A 1920s coat design for the Poppets printable paper dolls from paperthingpersonas.com. One of dozens of historical paper doll designs.

A 1920s coat design for the Poppets printable paper dolls from paperthingpersonas.com. One of dozens of historical paper doll designs.

I’m writing this post on a Sunday night, as I often do. Outside, it is raining very hard and I am reminded of how much we all need outerwear. So, it seemed fitting to post a 1926 coat for the Poppet’s 1920s Children’s Wardrobe Collection today.

But paper doll outerwear poses a unique challenge, because paper doesn’t exactly conform to the shape of the coat in question. So, when I create outwear for paper dolls, I tend to size up in the hope that the layering will all work out all right.

There’s a lot of complex 1920s coats in magazines. Fur trimming was popular and so were asymmetrical styles. But I didn’t really feel like drawing all that. I just wanted a coat. Nothing too complex.

I haven’t really drawn many coats (or any?) for the Poppet’s. So, I figured if the coat could be both part of the 1920s Children’s Wardrobe Collection and serve as a regular coat than that would be useful.

This is the last piece I have ready to go for the 1920s Children’s Wardrobe Collection, but don’t worry. There’s four more pieces in my sketchbook that I inked today, including some really cute pajamas.

If you haven’t checked it out, there’s about 8 posts in the 1920s Children’s Wardrobe Collection including 2 different dolls.

Just in case you are curious, today’s paper doll coat comes from 1920s Fashions from B. Altman & Company by Dover. I now own all of Dover’s 1920s fashion books, so clearly they need to publish more of them for me. I am running out of places to find my 1920s children’s clothing designs.

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

A Vintage Historical Printable Paper Doll Dress from 1926


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Today’s Printable Paper Doll Inspirations: The book 1920s Fashions from B. Altman & Company
A historical vintage 1926 printable paper doll dress with matching hat for the Poppets printable paper doll series from paperthinpersonas.com.

A historical vintage 1926 printable paper doll dress to color with matching hat for the Poppets printable paper doll series from paperthinpersonas.com.

This month, as some of you may have noticed, I’ve been posting a historical paper doll outfit each week. I decided to do that, because I had the content and I really love historical stuff.

I know a lot of you enjoy the historical paper dolls as well.

This week’s contribution to the historical paper dolls is a Poppets paper doll dress from 1926. It’s part of the 1920’s Children’s Wardrobe Collection that I’ve been adding to all year. Right now, there’s seven posts in the collection including two different dolls.

The design for today’s Poppet paper doll dress was taken from the book 1920s Fashions from B. Altman & Company which is a collection of reprints of pages for the catalogs issued by the B. Altman & Company.

B. Altman and Company was a luxury department store founded in New York City.

An interesting thing to think about is that Sears, the dress I posted here is from there, was a middle class store. B. Altman was a luxury store and their styles are much more cutting edge than Sears. That’s one of the reasons multiple sources are so useful when thinking about historical fashion.

Today’s dress feels later in the decade to me than 1926, but that’s partly because it is more “fashionable” than what you might see in a less fancy catalog.

There’s one more piece I’ve got finished for the 1920s Children’s Wardrobe collection and I have to ask, should I continue it? Are you all enjoying these forays into 1920s kid’s clothing? Let me know in a comment. I always enjoy your feedback.

Need a paper doll to wear today’s outfit? Pick a Poppet Paper Doll 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!