Today’s Printable Paper Doll Inspirations: Vasilisa the Beautiful
If I had to pick a favorite fairy tale (and how could I ever do that?) than Vasilisa the Beautiful would be in the top two or three. I’ve always loved Russian folklore and this tale is a wonderful one. It has Baba Yaga and skulls with glowing eyes and a matryoshka doll that talks.
What more could a person ask for?
Actually, I think my love of the tale comes from the lavish illustrations of Ivan Biliban. As a child, my mother gave me a book of Russian folktales with his amazing illustrations. So, it was probably the pictures that first drew me to these stories, but there’s something really magical about his work.
Vasilisa the Beautiful is a tale I had mixed feelings about illustrating for the Poppets, as the heroine is a grown woman rather than a child, but since I did Rapunzel (and Rapunzel gets pregnant) I though it would be okay.
The paper doll costume for Vasilisa the Beautiful that I designed is based on traditional Russian clothing. She wears a sarafan over a blouse. Here’s a lavish version from The Met. The headscarf was inspired by matryoshka dolls who you often see wearing them.
She has, of course, her own matryoshka doll as an accessory. I didn’t draw more than one, because one seemed enough.
When I was a child, my mother had a handmade set of matryoshka doll’s that came from Russia when it was the Soviet Union. They were precious to her and I remember playing with them as a child. I’ve always wanted a set of my own to display.
Anyway, I hope everyone has been enjoying the Fairy Tale and Nursery Rhyme series for the Poppets.