Dress Up the Court Alchemist in Some Extra Outfit Options

Last week, as you may recall, I posted my Court Alchemist paper doll. This week I am posting the rest of her wardrobe which gives her five outfits in total. I really do think the clothing makes the paper doll and I was always that kid who would have far rather have had dozens of outfits over dozens of paper dolls.

In fact, I remember when American Girl magazine published paper dolls and I used to get so annoyed that the dolls were “almost” in the exact same pose, but not quite. So, they couldn’t perfectly share clothing. Drove me just nuts as a kid. Here is a picture of one of the paper dolls.

Are there any children’s magazines left that still publish paper dolls?

I recall with much fondness the feeling to getting to check the mail for my American Girl magazine and it’s promised paper doll. In fact, if you want a similar experience (and you have an HP web enabled printer), then you might consider my HP Paper Thin Personas Printer Ap which prints a full color or black and white paper doll every Monday, automatically. You can also print the paper dolls on demand directly from the printer which is, I have to confess, pretty neat.

Court Alchemist Paper Doll wardrobe in Black and White for Coloring
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So, there are three dresses in this set. In my head, these are all fairly informal dresses. And who doesn’t need socks held up by some odd sock suspenders? (There is something inherently hilarious to me about sock suspenders… I might have a problem.)

I went back and forth about the patterned dress. I wanted it to look like a pattern that could be woven on a simple loom, but it ended up looking sort of like abstract eyes and now all I can think is, “The dress is staring at me…”

Court Alchemist wardrobe in full color
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As for tools, along with last week’s tool collection, this set adds a sextant, which is a tool for measuring the angle between any two visible objects, most often the horizon and stars. It was crucial for navigating back in the days before high levels of technology. As a girl with NO sense of direction, I am totally grateful to whoever invented GPS.

So, Friday there will be another page of Her Ladyship and Monday there will be an elf.

Meanwhile, you can follow me on twitter @paperpersonas for blog updates, random paper doll thoughts and a smattering of librarianship.

Circus Paper Doll for Coloring

Marisole Monday and Friends Logo and Link to free printable Marisole Monday paper doll based on circuses Marisole’s gone to the circus this monday, complete with makeup.

I have mixed feelings about circuses truth be told. Sometimes I like them and sometimes I find them deeply creepy. I’m not afraid of clowns or anything, but there is something slightly off dark and strange that runs through the whole idea of circuses and carnivals.

So, I’ve been drawing paper dolls for a long time and I always expect to run out of the ideas, but then I run into new things on a fairly regular basis that I want to do or try out. I don’t know that I’ve ever really done anything like this set. I started collecting circus images that I liked on Dark Circus Pinterest board and then eventually those images evolved into this set of doodles which evolved into this paper doll set.


Printable paper doll in black and white inspired by circuses
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I was going for fashion as much as reality with these outfits. I can’t imagine a clown wearing such insane high heels, for example. My Dark Circus board where I was collecting images evolved into being as much about fashion as it was about circuses.

I’m nervous about coloring this set. I was going to go strictly black and red, but then I really want her to have pink hair.

Problem, will the pink hair clash with the red and black? I just don’t know. Guess the only way to find out is to start coloring.

A Paper Doll And Her Full Color Ball Gowns to Print

Marisole Monday and Friends Logo and Link to free printable Marisole Monday paper doll with ballgowns inspired by Wa and Qi Lolita styles As I explained with the black and white version of today’s paper doll set, both of these dresses are based on Wa lolita and Qi lolita fashions. I really find fusions of different cultures fashions fascinating, plus sometimes drawing absurd dresses make me happy and Mia doesn’t get as much love as I think she should.

When I draw in black and white, I sometimes dread coloring, especially when the coloring means hyper detailed patterns like those in today’s paper doll. I’ve been doing more playing with color and pattern lately. I like patterns, but they are a lot of work. Even though I usually just draw one motif and use Photoshop to manipulate it on each dress. The size of these pattern motifs made their placement on the dresses important. Though I wanted it to feel organic, I also wanted the detail of the complex patterns to shine through.

No point in drawing complex things if no one can appreciate them, after all. In my mind, that’s like sewing a fantastic wardrobe for an ugly doll… why bother?


Asian paper doll to print with two ballgowns based Wa Lolita and Qi Lolita styles

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I based the color scheme on this kimono which I found online. Everytime I reference kimono, I am reminded of the fantastic posts on Liana’s Paper Doll Blog about Japanese dress. She’s far more an expert of this topic than I.

Personally, I thought it was very a beautiful kimono and I really liked the color combination. What looks black isn’t actually black, it is a very dark purple-red color. I used the same color for her hair. I like doing that, because I think a color scheme should be about making a harmonious set.

Every set should be a complete work, rather than just a collection of clothing pieces and should be able to stand alone, even if it is part of a larger collection of paper dolls.

Black and White Paper Doll With Wa and Qi Lolita Inspired Ballgowns

Marisole Monday and Friends Logo and Link to free printable Marisole Monday paper doll with ballgowns inspired by Wa and Qi Lolita styles Today, we have a pair of ballgowns which were heavily influenced by wa lolita and qi lolita fashion styles. I showed off the rough sketches last Monday. Wa lolita and qi lolita are substyles of the Japanese street style lolita. F Yeah Lolita (a blog I have come to rather enjoy reading) discusses lolita in detail, but I actually think the wikipedia article is nice for people who know nothing about it.

Anyway, both wa lolita (infulenced by Japanese traditional dress) and qi lolita (influenced by Chinese traditional dress) are styles I think are fascinating, because cultural fusion always interests me. However, I try to be careful about how I borrow from cultures which are not my own, because I am very aware of the problematic and complicated issues of cultural appropriation which underlie children’s toys and visual representations of culture. I could ramble on about that topic until… well, for a every long time… but I figure most people are really here for the paper dolls, so I’ll restrain myself.


Asian paper doll to print with two ballgowns based Wa Lolita and Qi Lolita styles

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A few of my ideas came from this dress by FanplusFreind and this dress, also by FanplusFriend. I first discovered qi lolita through this dress which is actually a doll’s dress. The shoes are just sort of random inventions, though the ones on the right with the stockings were influenced by rocking horse shoes which are pretty cool (though maybe hard to walk in… I don’t know, I’ve never worn them.)

I can’t wait to share these in color next week, though I openly confess the pattern on the left dress is giving me fits. Every-time I do a complicated pattern, I swear I will never do it again and then… well… I do it again. Isn’t insanity doing the same thing over and over again expecting different results?

Oh, and before I forget, the fast of Ramadan officially ends this evening I think, so Happy Eid al-Fitr to any of my readers who are Muslim. I don’t know much about Ramadan, but the mosque by my apartment has been busier than usual this month.

Margot in Wonderland… Full Color Paper Doll to Print

Marisole Monday and Friends Logo and Link to free printable Marisole Monday paper doll based on Alice's Adventures in Wonderland I spent a chunk of my weekend coloring my Margot in Wonderland paper doll from last week. Today, Margot gets to be a blond and has, of course, a wardrobe of Alice inspired paper clothing pieces. As I mentioned last week, I’ve been inspired by Alice many times before and drawn her many times over the years.

After some time I decided to go with a jewel tone color scheme that was a bit bright. I wanted to capture the richness of color that could be captured with color lithography from the 19th century. I was also heavily inspired by this Lolita outfit. I really loved the rich colors since they are not the pastels or black that I normally associate with Lolita fashion.

As I mentioned with my Turn of the Century Pixie Paper Doll, I often collect ideas on my Pinterest boards, so you can check out the Lolita board I keep to see where some of these outfit pieces came from. Nothing was directly taken, but I find ideas and inspiration makes drawing paper dolls faster and easier than it would be without them.


paper doll to print based on Alice's Adventures in Wonderland

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The top hat’s floating tab is meant to be attached using the same method as I outlined in my instructions for attaching wigs and hats to paper dolls. This is one of my favorite methods of doing wig and hat attachment for the paper dolls I design and so I use it often.

By the way, yesterday I put up a new Featured Paper Doll Artist interview with Irma of Pabernukublogi. Check it out when you have a chance. :)

Margot in Wonderland… Printable Paper Doll to Color

Marisole Monday and Friends Logo and Link to free printable Marisole Monday paper doll I have been traveling a lot over the last three months. One trip every month which has made for scattered time for myself. I’ve mentioned many times on this blog that I normally work from a long backlog and that having a backlog of paper dolls allows me to plan my life.

Well… I’m out of backlog, so the fact that today’s paper doll happened was a shcok to me. I did not think I would get her done, but I am pleased that I did.

Alice in Wonderland paper dolls are something I have drawn before. I think in total I have done three paper dolls that I’ve posted.

Today’s paper doll version of Alice in Wonderland uses Margot, whose been a bit neglected. Her costumes owe a lot to both Neo-Victorian and Lolita styles.


printable full color paper doll with summer beach clothing

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I had an awful lot of fun putting together the rabbit pattern and the card pattern for the two skirts. I attempted to draw a more realistic top hat than I have in the past, but I’m not pleased with it. There’s something off about the perspective, I think. However, I shall eventually get over my problems with hats. I just have to keep trying, so expect to see more hats.

Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass are books I love, but that I don’t think have aged very well in many ways. The general lack of agency for Alice, not to mention the fact that most of the jokes don’t really resonate with modern life (how many of us had to recite in school? I mean… really?), means that when most of us think of Alice, we think of iconic characters and symbols without actually remembering the story. The Cheshire Cat, the Mad Hatter, or Dweedle-Dee and Dweedle-Dum are all so familiar it hardly matters that the Mad Hatter is a reference to the mercury poisoning common to men in that profession during the Victorian era.

Fairytales Flock: Robin as Cinderella

Cinderella's Outfit Options Wow, it’s been a while since I posted one of these paper dolls, hasn’t it? My last set was East of the Sun, West of the Moon which I was quite proud of. I took a little break from the Flock dolls and now I’ve returned with a Cinderella set. To be honest, my return was partly inspired by Paper Doll School’s fairytale paper dolls and by the Toy Box Philosopher’s wonderful reviews of the Ever After High dolls that Mattel is making (though they include characters that are not fairytale characters… Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland is NOT a fairytale…)

Anyway, for my Cinderella, I decided to stick to the Grimm version of the tale where Cinderella is a little more proactive. The Grimm version of the tale includes three balls, no pumpkin, lots of birds and eventually people cutting off parts of their feet (ewww). Actually, like a lot of Grimm tales it is a pretty… well… Grimm tale.

One of the challenges of all the fairytale Flock sets is trying to figure out which parts of the tale make logical symbols for the paper doll set. For Cinderella, I chose to use birds and clocks as my two thematic elements, since both play a major role in the tale of Cinderella.

Fairytale Flock: Robin as Cinderella
Thumbnail Image of Magnetic Paper Dolls-Cinderella Thumbnail Image of Magnetic Paper Dolls- Cinderella
Robin as Cinderella Doll PDF Download Cinderella’s Clothing PDF Download

Steampunk Pixie in Pink named Shirin

Things to say about today’s printable paper doll… It is my first Pixie paper doll in a while. She’s two pages and has a distinctly steampunk inspired wardrobe. If you’ve been following this blog for a while, you might remember the sketchbook post back in April of 2013 when I showed off the inked version of this set.

Wow… this was a long time coming, wasn’t it?

Shirin, in my continuing search for names I haven’t used ever, is a Persian name meaning “sweet”. Continuing the theme, her coloring is based on the Iranian actress Nazanin Boniadi, except with really curly hair, because I love curly hair and I’m trying to practice drawing it. You can expect to see more curly hair in the future on the blog.

Oh, and her clothing has nothing to do with Persia. I tried to think of a connection after I decided to base her coloring on Nazanin Boniadi, but I don’t have one as her clothing is distinctly Western without a hint of influence from the Middle East and is mostly based on the clothing of young men in the early 20th century.


{Click Here for a PDF of Shirin to Color} {Click Here for a 150 dpi PNG of Shirin to Color} {Click Here for a PDF of Shirin’s Wardrobe to Color} {Click Here for a 150 dpi PNG of Shirin’s Wardrobe to Color}

{Click Here for a PDF of Shirin in Color} {Click Here for a 150 dpi PNG of Shirin in Color} {Click Here for a PDF of Shirin’s Wardrobe in Color} {Click Here for a 150 dpi PNG of Shirin’s Wardrobe in Color}

Oh, and as sometimes happens when I saved these images for the web, Photoshop did odd things to the colors. I recommend looking at the PDF version of Shirin and Shirin’s Wardrobe to see what I really intended the color scheme to look like. Partly this was a challenge to do a steampunkish set without the color brown. Harder than it looks, actually… because the line between goth and steampunk is often one of color, not design. That, however, is a whole different discussion for another day.

Faye Visits the 1920s

Thumbnail of the printable paper doll clothes Faye has decided to do a little time traveling and visit the 1920′s. Inspired in part by Anna May Wong (the first Asian-American famous film actress), I knew I wanted to use Faye, my Asian Mini-Maiden in this set.

(I did not give Faye Anna May’s wonderful bangs because every time I tried to draw them they looked… off somehow.)

Faye has shoes, stockings, a girdle, a house dress, two day dresses and then a swimsuit. She should probably also have a swimming cap, but I didn’t really think about that until after I finished the set and then it was too late. ‘

Oh well…

I really had fun with this set since I just bought a few more books of 1920′s fashion and wanted an excuse to play with them.


Thumbnail link image printable paper doll

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I’m trying to give more information on where I do my costume research when I say something is historically accurate, so I’m including a sources list, in case anyone else wants to dabble in the 1920s. It’s not exhaustive. There’s some other great books out there, just what I happened to use for this set and have on my own shelves at home.

A Few Sources for 1920′s Fashion History

1920s Fashions from B. Altman & Company. Mineola, NY: Dover Publications, 1999.
Atelier Bachwitz. Classic French Fashions of the Twenties. Mineola, NY: Dover Publications, 2012.
Blum, Stella. Everyday Fashions of the Twenties as Pictured in Sears and Other Catalogs. New York: Dover Publications, 1981.
Lussier, Suzanne. Art Deco Fashion. Boston: Bulfinch/AOL Time Warner Book Group, 2003.
Peacock, John. 20th-century Fashion: The Complete Sourcebook. London: Thames and Hudson, 1993.

Do people find this idea of sources lists useful? I don’t want to do them all the time, but for my historical stuff I thought it might be helpful for folks. Thoughts from my fabulous readers?

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.


Thumbnail link image printable paper doll
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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.

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