Today’s Printable Paper Doll Inspirations: Newsboy Caps, Street Urchins, and Steampunk
I love all things Victorian and I have an equal love for neo-Victorian styles. I saw drawing steampunk stuff back in middle school, before there even was such a thing as steampunk. I called it Victorian Punk and I stumbled across some of those drawings last time I moved. Maybe I’ll dig them out and share them with my Patrons.
And actually, I haven’t ever done B&B steampunk before, unless you count my Regency Steampunk set I did last year. This set is much less high class and much more street urchin. Still, I love the belt. Love it.
Along with my favorite belt, there is also a newsboy cap, something I am still learning to draw, arm warmers and boots. Everything is better with boots. Personally, I also really like the yellow socks, but there is a black and white version, so feel free to color them anyway you please. Just in case you’re not as into yellow socks as I am.
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Today’s Printable Paper Doll Inspirations: Sarah Josepha Hale, 1860’s Men’s Clothing and Harvest Colors
I’ve never done a Thanksgiving paper doll before. Personally, I have always struggled to come up with an idea that isn’t either cliche or offensive. The portrayal of Native American, for example, in paper doll form has generally been rather awful and I certainly wasn’t in the mood to do some mythical pilgrims.
First of all, she wrote Mary Had a Little Lamb, which is pretty cool, but more then that she was the editor of the important publication Godey’s Lady’s Book, and was an advocate for Thanksgiving.
In short, Hale believed that Thanksgiving was about choosing a time to both unite as a Nation and to express our joy and gratitude for our many blessings. Given the current political climate, I cannot think of a better reason to have a holiday. Her advocacy for the national holiday began in 1846 and was successful in 1863 when Lincoln, in the midst of the Civil War, formally announced a National Day of Thanksgiving.
In celebration this year, I have drawn a suit from the 1860s, specifically 1861. I actually had a really impossible time finding a suit from 1863, so this will have to do. Keeping with the Thanksgiving theme, the suit is done in harvest colors. You’ll need a gent to wear this suit, so I recommend picking up one of the Marisole Monday & Friends guy paper dolls and outfitting him. Should you like him to have a lady date to his 1860s Thanksgiving Dinner, then here’s some 1860s clothing for the Marisole Monday & Friends lady paper dolls.
I don’t know nearly as much about men’s clothing of the Victorian era as I know about women’s clothing, so I am pretty nervous about how accurate this is, but I did my best and I think this is the first ever historical men’s paper doll outfit I have ever posted. So, please be kind to my first attempt. I also need to get some books on men’s clothing of the 19th century. Anyone got any recommendations?
Anyway, I hope everyone has a wonderful holiday with family, with friends or just with the day off.
It seems only proper to close out the week of steampunky paper doll goodness with a ballgown, don’t you think? I mean, after all, it is the most formal of the formal. Ballgowns were just below Court Dress on the formal scale and Court Dress was pretty much as formal as it got.
Plus Court Dress came with crazy rules like it had to have a train and at one point, it had to have panniers and… I could go on.
Since it amuses me (and that’s all that matters), let’s continue this week’s tradition of 19th century style explanations of Monica’s steampunk or neo-victorian outfits, here’s my ballgown description:
An elegant ball or evening dress suitable for a young matron or unmarried lady in pale leaf green trimmed in lavender. The bodice is two tones of green with a lavender side lacing and the skirt is cut in the mermaid silhouette with curved frills of satin flaring elegantly to the floor in pale blue, lavender and green.
Quick reminder: Black and white versions can be downloaded at the top of the post. 🙂
Monica’s Neo-Victorian Wardrobe
I do want to address one other thing. I was asked my a few people (one comment, one email) if it would be possible on Friday’s to combine all the outfits of the week into one page for ease of printing. The answer is No, for two reasons. Reason 1: I actually started this format to get away from having to do layout work which is super time consuming.
Reason 2: (And this is the cool reason) These pieces wouldn’t fit on one page. Back in the old system, I would have draw two skirts and then four tops, two shoes and then a smattering of hats and other accessories. Over the course of the week we’ve had four skirts, four tops, five hats, two pairs of shoes, two parasols, one walking stick and a bag. That’s 15 pieces!
You are actually getting MORE paper doll content this way AND its less time consuming for me. Everyone wins!
By the way, I want to add that both people who asked these questions were super nice about it and I don’t mind at all getting questions and thoughts from you all. Please keep them coming.
So, on that note, questions? Comments? Thoughts? Let me know.
But to come down from the high for a moment, it has occurred to me that I’m not really sure how to write a pseudo-19th century fashion plate description of these pieces.
So, instead, I thought I would wax philosophical about accessories. In the real work, I am not a big accessories girl, but in the paper doll world, I just love them. Back when I was a kid, I had a paper doll book called, The Victorian Cat Family. It was an amazing paper doll book with literally thousands of fantastic tiny accessories all of which I painstakingly cut out.
Oh, the memories… Still love that book.
Anyway, I’m not the greatest artist when it comes to non-clothing items, but I try to spice things up with parasols, hats and shoes. Part of the fun of hats is that they change up an outfit. Also, I just love love love drawing paper doll shoes.
(Yes, I realize that is a kinda quirky thing to love. No, I am not ashamed.)
If you missed Monday, you might need a doll to wear theses fun shoes. Here’s Monica all ready for her neo-Victorian wardrobe.
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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So, here we are in week two of the new system for PTP. It’s very exciting. I am feeling excited. Also a little nervous, I must confess.
Monica is our model today. She is, of course, from the Marisole Monday & Friend’s series. This whole week will be a neo-Victorian/Steampunk inspired week with hats, skirts and jackets. As I know I’ve said before, I have a THING for the whole idea of different outfits for different activities. When I’m in Victorian fantasy land, I like to decide which outfit goes with which Victorian activity.
A lady of quality in the Victorian era had a variety of gowns at different levels of formality. At one end of the scale was the house dress or morning dress and at the other end of the scale was a ballgown or full-dress.
Monica’s suit today is a promenade costume, I think. To channel my inner-19th century fashion magazine (everyone should have an inner 19th century fashion magazine), here how I would describe it:
A promenade or afternoon visiting costume in purple wool with a matching jacket. Underneath the jacket, the model wears a lavender shirtwaist. The jacket is trimmed in pale teal and aqua velvet and satin. A wide band of lavender satin decorates the skirt and then several rows of aqua ruffles. The chapeau is dyed to match the suit and trimmed in rosettes of aqua silk, feathers and brass buttons. The entire ensemble is quite smart for street or afternoon wear.
Sometimes I am conflicted as to whether I like the term Neo-Victorian or the term Steampunk better. The truth is that I think this set is more Neo-Victorian in its styling. One of the tropes of Steampunk is high technology made through steam-power and there’s none of those aesthetics in this paper doll. However, no matter how I feel about it, I confess that the SEO for steampunk is far better than the SEO for neo-Victorian.
Thoughts from the audience on that one?
Oh, and a few “housekeeping” things. The link to the coloring page version of today’s paper doll is at the top with the links to the PDF. As always, I strongly urge you to print from the PDF copy and to print it however you have been printing them from the beginning. That will assure that the new stuff and the old stuff still fits.
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