Pixie & Puck: Adalind

Adalind was in the same vein as Blossom and, at least some ways related to, Tones and Shades, Tokyo Meets Georgia and Inspired by Africa of Marisole. I know a lot about historical costume in the western world. I’ve read up on it, I understand it and to tell you the truth I really enjoy it.

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Despite that, or perhaps because of it, I have found myself drawn to the costumes of other groups. I’ve been reading up on Africa and Asia and the Middle East, but as I did my reading I stumbled across the traditional dress of Sweden and Austria and became interested in it as well. So, Adalind was born out of that interest.

It is funny the complicated routes paper dolls can take from idea to creation.

Curves 2.0 Meet Chiharu

I debated long and hard what to name this paper doll. I had a friend in high-school who was Japanese American named Claire, and I almost named the paper doll (with whom she shares really no resemblance) Claire, but then I decided I wanted to actually try to find a name with Asian origins which started with C. I wanted it to be a fairly common name and I didn’t care if it was Chinese or Korean or Japanese or really from anywhere else.

Being as I know nothing about traditional naming practices of pretty much any Asian country and being as I didn’t really feel like learning them, I ended up pawing around baby name sites looking for something I could pronounce and which was not hyper unusual. I don’t know how common this name is, but based on the fact that several actresses in Hong Kong have it, I think it can’t be that unusual. (Thank you, Wikipedia.)

dictionary-girls-paper-dolls-chiharu {Click Here for a PDF to Print} {Click Here for a 150 dpi PNG to Print} {Click Here for The Rest of this Series} {Click Here for More Dolls to Dress}

There will be another paper doll next week and then some costumes to dress them both in. Once I have a few more dolls, I’ll do more clothing. I just wanted to have a range of different dolls for dressing up. I’ve written before about the large number of child development studies which have been done about the need for children to see themselves reflected in their toys. While I don’t usually think much about children when I’m working on paper dolls, I do try to have many different skin tones and hair colors and combinations, so that almost any child could be given a paper doll that looked like them. Plus it keeps me amused. I’m always divided between the desire to have a bunch of different skin tones and the practical need to create mix and match clothing options. The biggest issue is shoes which often show some skin and then can only be worn by paper dolls who have the same color skin as the skin shown in the shoes.

Some people worry about world hunger, I worry about paper doll shoes.

At Hogwarts: Harry Potter Paper Doll

I’ve been thinking about doing Harry Potter paper dolls for a while, but have be resisting the urge because I always felt like Marisole looked as though she was too old and so did the other paper dolls on the site. To me, Marisole will always be in her early-20’s and that means dressing her up as a student takes on kinky connotations. Not a place I wanted to go with my paper dolls. While I’ve always thought of Marisole as an adult, I’ve always thought of Pixie as a teenager (late teens, but teens never the less). So, it made more sense in my head to do Pixie as a Hogwarts Student for my Harry Potter foray.

A Harry Potter inspired paper doll of a young Hogwarts Students with uniforms and accesories. Free from PaperThinPersonas.com

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Since I didn’t feel like drawing the same thing over and over again, I decided to do four different sweater and shirt combos- one for each house. The school uniform aspect of Hogwarts garb is a movie creation, since I don’t recall anything beyond a black robe ever being described in the books. Though most schools in the UK do have uniforms and, while I didn’t have a school uniform as a kid in the US, I did enjoy watching the kids stream out of school in their uniforms while I was living in England. It never ceased to amuse me.

Actually, the Hogwarts uniform have changed subtly with each movie, taking on a darker feel as the movies have gotten darker. Rather fascinating really, if you have more time then you know what to do with and you’re easily amused -or watching them in a row while drawing your Harry Potter paper doll.

Of the four sweater combos, I think I like the bronze and blue Ravenclaw one the best. I like the colors and I like how it came out. I should say that I didn’t really plan which sweater would be which house, it just sort of happened without me thinking much about it.

I think the doll looks either Latino or perhaps East Indian would be more fitting given that the school is in Scotland. Maybe a relative of the Patils… Hard to say.

Curves 2.0 Meet Bianna

Today we have Alyssa’s partner in crime, Bianna. I spent a while debating if I should post clothing before I posted another doll, but in the end the other doll won out, mostly because I’m rather in love with her wigs and her lips.

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I promise next week there will be some clothing, so the poor girls aren’t running around in their girdles for too much longer. I’m having a lot of fun digging around the Vintage Pattern Wiki looking for dress ideas while fretting about how I don’t like their feet placement.

Oh, well, I don’t think I’ll ever have a perfect paper doll. 🙂

Bianna is not named after anything or anyone specific, except that her name starts with B and I liked how it sounded. Do cut along the dotted lines on her wigs and by her arm to help her wear her costumes. I’ve spent the last few days working hard to finish up assignments for my summer course work and I must confess I have little intelligent to say in this blog post, so enjoy the paper doll and, as always, I love to hear what people think.

Curves 2.0 The Beginning…

When I started this blog, the temptation was to name all of my paper dolls after Greek letters. So, there could be Alpha and Beta and Omega and others. However, I decided that they would end up sounding like some sort of strange paper doll SWAT team.

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On an only slightly less surreal note, I have decided to give each of the Curves 2.0 dolls a name based on a letter of the alphabet. So, today we have the first paper doll. Her name is Alyssa. She’s a redhead for I openly confess to having a soft spot for redheads. Her skin looks overly pale on some computers and normal on mine, so I can’t really say much about that. I’ve decided to call the paper dolls “Dictionary Girls” after the idea of “Calendar Girls” which dates from the tendency for there to be pin-ups on calendars.

The plan is to have another paper doll for next week and then some clothing for them the week after so that aren’t running around in their underwear, poor dears.

PS: To everyone who wanted these dolls to be done in the heavily shadowed style of the old Curves sets, there’s another new series starting Friday which will replace Flora and will be in that style.

Marisole Monday: Happy 4th of July

To celebrate the 4th of July, I thought I would check out books from the library, sit down and set to work on drawing some historical costumes for Marisole set in the 18th century since the Revolutionary War (Or, as the Brits call it, the Rebellion of the Colonies) was in the 1770s. I’ve only done one other set of historical costumes for the paper doll and they were regency dresses (One set one in July and one in August in 2010). This is about as far from the Regency aesthetic as you can get- the French Revolution did have a way of changing fashion, also of decapitating an awful lot of people. Those wiley French.

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So, I’ll confess that when I have to name my favorite periods of historical fashion the 18th century doesn’t get a lot of attention. I’m just not that huge of a fan, but when I was in England I went to the Fashion Museum in Bath and I saw an actual 18th century gown in person. Despite my tendency to dismiss such costumes as too poofy, too over the top, too absurd for my taste, the actual dress was among the most astonishing pieces of craftsmanship I have seen.


marisole-18th-century-paper-doll-2{Click Here for a PDF to Print} {Click Here for a PNG to Print}{Click Here for the rest of this series}

The frustration of drawing historical costumes for Marisole is that her proportions are so darn strange. While I like how she looks, it means that historical dresses (which rely on a specific silhouette) look off. As I drew these costumes, I realized I was going to a have to allow myself to be a little more liberal then my natural leaning for historical accuracy allows and, besides, I don’t really know enough about the 18th Century to be hyper critical of my own work. I won’t say these costumes are historically accurate, I will say they are historically inspired.

Anyway, if you’d like to read more about 18th century costume, I recommend the excellent 18th Century Blog which is full of beautiful pictures and things, as well as, the exhibit Historic Threads. As for books, I used An Elegant Art, Seventeenth and Eighteenth-Century Fashion in Detail and, of course, Patterns of Fashion: Englishwomen’s Dresses & Their Construction, even if you never plan on sewing one of her patterns, this book is worth every penny just for the historical information. Someday, I will own all of Janet Arnold‘s books… Someday.

Enjoy the paper dolls and, for those in the United States, have a great 4th of July.

Edit 8/23/13: One of these paper dolls is now available in black and white for coloring.

Fashion Doll Friday: Flora’s Long Corset and House Dress

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There is a myth that women gave up corsets in the early 1800’s and that’s just not true. A corset, or stays if you prefer, provides a fair bit of support for women, just like a modern bra. They did, however, alter the look of their undergarments. The long corset on the left is from about 1810, though I have seen similar things cited with later dates. I’m afraid I don’t know enough about women’s underwear in the early 1800’s to be sure.

Flora’s other dress is a basic house dress- something worn for work as much as anything else. I based it off of this dress though I simplified the skirt. I’d like to draw a few shawls, since they were such a standard garment of the day, but I haven’t decided how to do them yet.

Curves: Down an Rabbit Hole

I have always loved Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland. It’s been a favorite novel since I was a child. Over the years, I have done a few different Alice inspired paper dolls, there’s one in the Gallery as well.

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This was supposed to be posted last week, but illness and finals put it off until today. The semester is finally over, thank the Gods, and I can now settle into my summer routine of working full time at the library and taking a few summer courses.

My hope is that over the next week I’ll have time to finish reformatting the site. Once it’s done, I’ll be asking that people email me with broken links and other problems as I’m sure there will be some. I can’t really focus on the “housekeeping” side of the blog while I’m trying to keep up with my weekly schedule, but with classes over I have some free time to devote to all things blog related.

Neapolitan Ice Cream: Steampunk Printable Paper Doll

I don’t normally start with a color scheme. I normally start with an idea and then worry about how to color it, but with this paper doll set I started with a color scheme. I knew I wanted to do something with browns and creams. The pink came from the desire to pick a contrasting color that was warm rather then cool.

marisole-napoleon-ice-cream

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I decided to name this paper doll set after that ice cream with the vanilla, chocolate and strawberry stripes that I always used to think was called Napoleon Ice Cream, but I realized later that it actually had nothing to do with short militaristic Frenchmen and was actually called Neapolitan Ice Cream after the city of Naples. So, I’m glad I found that out before I wrote this post and sounded like a total ditz. I take some pride in only being a partial ditz.

I’m actually quite pleased with how this paper doll came out. I really like the contrast of the red hair with the brown and pink color scheme, though I confess I originally tried her out with every other hair color since I felt like I have done a lot of redheads and then I gave up and decided didn’t care. I’ve likes redheads ever since I saw Anne of Green Gables on TV as a child.

Fashion Doll Friday: Flora’s French Ballgown from 1812

I usually don’t go for Rose Ballgowns but I liked the grace of this costume and I really liked the sleeves. I didn’t mimic the plate exactly and I sort of invented the front of the dress since I only saw the back of the dress. I included gloves, which were needed since the sleeves of this era were so short, shoes to match and a wig styled with roses. So, it’s pretty much a whole Flora outfit.

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Really this outfit happened because I have wonderful friends. As I wrote before, I have supportive friends who seem to be fairly relaxed when I say things like “Yeah, I’m thinking about buying Instyle so I have some paper doll fodder.” And they nod as though this is a normal thing to say while standing in a drug store at 10 pm on a light night chips run. In fact, sometimes they go through it with me telling me what I should draw though usually their picks are more hilarious than practical.

(I don’t really fancy the idea of drawing nine million sequins. Sorry guys.)

But when one of them told me this was the dress I should draw of a set of dresses I was looking at, I decided to go for it. It was the right period and fun, if a little fancier then what I usually draw