Hip-Hop Ms. Mannequins: The Last Outfit


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A hip -hop fashion inspired paper doll outfit for the Ms. Mannequin series. Part of a week of hip-hop paper doll fashions. Free from paperthinpersonas.com in black and white or color.

Ending the week with my favorite of all outfits for Zola, my hip-hop fashion paper doll. I know that I shouldn’t have favorite outfits, but I totally do and this is it. I love the top and I love the skirt. Both are based off River Island pieces from Rihanna’s capsule collection for that brand, but, here’s the embarrassing bit, I drew them so long ago that it doesn’t look like the website it still caring them. You’re just going to have to believe me when I tell you this is the case.

Anyway, I do think this outfit is the most formal of the all the outfits I designed for Zola, the paper doll from Monday. Of course, any of the Ms Mannequins can wear it. I think Kira and Shayna would look particularly good in the neon green skirt thanks to their darker skin tones. Thoughts on that one?

I did want to take a moment and talk about something that is dear to my librarian heart: Research.

More formally, how do you research something like Hip-Hop fashion?

Let me be clear, I am an outsider to all this. Hip-hop was born out of the African-American experience in urban environments. I am from the rural state of Alaska and I am not African-American. So, yeah… not exactly my area of experience at all. So, whenever I am trying to learn about something where I am an outsider, I go in with the goal of learning, not judging. And I go in knowing that I don’t know very much and I might be wrong.

Actually, those two goals are pretty good ways to approach life generally, I think.

In this case, I started with encyclopedia’s of African-American culture to learn more about the history of hip-hop. Then, since I am such a visual person, I went to the fashion websites of many of the fashion lines like Rocawear by Jay Z, Yeezy by Kayne, Billionaire Boy’s Club by Pharell and Ivy Park by Beyonce. Lastly, I watched a wonderful documentary called Fresh Dressed. Of course, there are some books I could have read and more research I could have done, but at some point you have to pause and say, “Okay, I think I know enough to try.”

And this last week has been the result of my efforts.

So, I actually have a few more hip-hop paper doll pieces from when I started this project (that was back in December, I am ashamed to admit). Some of them may yet find their way onto the blog. I haven’t decided, but I did want to share this unique style to the best of my ability.

A Hip-Hop Fashion Paper Doll Named Zola and Her Wardrobe

If you didn’t know, the blog has a pretty rocking Twitter feed. It’s also one of the best ways to ask me questions, because I answer way more often on Twitter. Also, if you love the blog, then consider becoming a patron, every dollar really helps and once I am done with my move, than I am planning some cool Patron only content.

So, as this was a rather experimental week, what did people think? Did you all enjoy this little foray into a hip-hop fashion paper doll? I’d love to know in a comment. Next week is going to be a Marisole Monday & Friends paper doll week with Marisole and some fun summer fashions.

After that… well, I haven’t really gotten that sorted yet.

Hip-Hop Ms. Mannequins: Shorts & A Beanie


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A hip-hop fashion inspired paper doll outfit. Free to print in color or black and white.

This last August has been hot. Really hot. And super humid. August’s like this make me hate Alabama with a deep fiery passion. While it is now September and technically fall, the heat doesn’t seem to have caught onto that idea. So, today I’m posting paper doll shorts and a t-shirt to try to make up for some of the blistering heat out there.

Times like this, I really miss the damp cold of Juneau, Alaska where I grew up. (Right now, all my friends in Juneau are like, You are crazy.)

Anyway, today’s hat was a bit of a trial. The curls of the paper doll, Zola, give her a fairly wide hair style and the hat had to be wide enough to fit over that. I think it rather altered the look of the hat, so I am less then overjoyed about how to turned out. Sometimes, paper doll logistics bite you in the butt, you know?

So, my move happens tomorrow, Saturday, and Sunday. I mention this, because I will be slow to answer comments and email. Also, I’ll be really grouchy, so you probably don’t want me to be answering anyway.

Until then, if you missed the paper doll to wear this stylish outfit, she was posted on Monday. If you are thinking, but I want a different paper doll to wear this stylish outfit, than hop over to the Ms. Mannequin dolls category.

Last but not least, there is a black and white version linked at the top of the page.

Hip-Hop Ms Mannequins: Blue Windbreaker and Grey Sweatpants


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A paper doll outfit inspired by hip-hop fashions featuring a blue windbreaker and baseball cap. Free to print in black and white or color from paperthinpersonas.com

A big part of hip-hop fashion seems to be athletic wear inspired. So, today’s outfit is too. It’s a pale blue windbreaker with grey sweatpants and a matching baseball cap.

If you’re thinking- “She needs some cute white tennis shoes to go with that outfit” than hop over to Monday’s post where I have Zola who has a pair that I think would look really good with these pieces.

I am getting better at drawing baseball caps every time I draw one. Who knew? Practice really does help.

The black and white versions are at the top of the post, as usual. Also, as usual, I recommend printing from the PDF for best results.

So, I’ve also been trying out Instagram, but I am struggling a little. Still, follow me if you want to see some sketchbooks photos and also pictures of my baked goods. And of course, there’s Patreon if you want to help support PTP, plus the blog is on twitter @paperpersonas. It amuses me that my blog has a more active social media life than I do.

All right, any hip hop fans out there, I am trying to learn more, so I am looking for music recommendations. Please feel free to leave one in the comments or anything else in the comments. I like comments.

Hip-Hop Ms. Mannequins: Cargo Pants and a T-Shirt

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A paper doll outfit inspired by hip-hop fashions for the Ms. Mannequin paper doll series. It's also available in black and white for coloring.

So, let’s start the week with a little Hip-Hop history.

(Wow, alliteration anyone?)

Hip-hop as a musical form is considered to have begun in New York City, in the impoverished, largely black, South Bronx during the mid-1970s. DJs, such as DJ Kool Herc, Grandmaster Flash, and Afrika Bambaataa, would play records at block parties where they discovered that people were far more interested in dancing to the “breaks” in the music than to the actual “music” and they developed techniques, such as playing the same record on both sides of a turn-table, to extend these musical “breaks.”

The first official hip-hop record to be released was in 1979, when Sugarhill Records released “Rapper’s Delight” by the Sugarhill Gang.

The art of rapping, or speaking over music, is part of Hip-Hop music, but does not alone define the genre. See? I learned a new thing in my research.

All right, so my first hip-hop fashion foray is based on a this outfit worn by Rihana. Rihana has her own clothing line called River Island. These items are very very loosely based on some of those designs.

The blog has it’s own Twitter feed where you can hear all about what paper dolls I’m working on. I’ve also been trying out Instagram, but I’m struggling a little with it. And of course, there’s always Patreon where there are behind the scenes blog post regularly if you join up.

So, what do you think? How did I do on my foray into Hip-Hop fashions?

Hip-Hop Ms. Mannequins: Meet Zola, Our Model


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Zola, a black paper doll, is a model for the Ms Mannequin series. She has curly hair and two pairs of tennis shoes.

Some series easily adapted to this new format and the Ms. Mannequin’s were one such paper doll series. Today, I’d like to introduce Zola, the first Ms. Mannequin to be done in the new series format.

There won’t be an accessory Thursday this week. Instead, I decided to put Zola’s shoes with the dolls, because her skin is visible on those pieces. Zola has the same skin-tone as my paper doll Tanya who was the first of the Ms. Mannequin paper dolls. They can, therefore, easily share shoes. I also wanted to keep the sets close to the format of the original Ms. Mannequin series as I could.

This week I’m going to be exploring Hip-Hop fashion. Many famous hip-hop artists (Jay Z, Pharell, Diddy, Rihanna, Beyonce, Kanye) have created fashion lines. So, I didn’t want to keep ignoring this trend in fashion, but unlike a lot of fashion styles, this one seems focused more on men’s clothing than women’s clothing.

This brings us to today’s paper doll- Zola. Zola has two pairs of tennis shoes. As far as I can tell, expensive tennis shoes are a very important part of the Hip-Hop fashion genre. While many of these shoes come in all sorts of colors, I chose white and black for the mix and match options those two colors offer. Everything goes with white or black, after all.

New content announcements, plus other interesting stuff, goes up pretty regularly on the blogs Twitter feed. It’s also one of the best ways to ask me questions. Also, if you love the blog, then consider becoming a patron.

Thoughts on this week’s theme? It’s a departure for me, since I don’t know much about this style and I hope I can do it justice.

Oh, and Happy Labor Day! I hope people have fun whatever they are doing. I am packing to move, but I assume other people might have better plans. 🙂

Sporty Pixie named Adannaya

sporty-logoLike Jaunty Summer Styles and Minimalism, today’s printable paper doll was the direct result of me purchasing a bunch of fashion magazines in March. Adannaya is rocking the “sporty” look which is very popular. Sort of high fashion meets gym wear and if that seems like an odd match to you then you are not alone (it seems an odd match to me too). Her hair is based on this fantastic updo which I pinned to my hair board on Pinterest. Lurking around my Pinterest boards provides sneak peaks on what I am currently obsessed with. Feel free to follow me.

 

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Anyway, the name Adannaya is from West Africa, Igbo to be specific, and means “Her Father’s daughter” according to Behind the Name. I’m sure I’ve never used the name before. I liked that I could track it to a specific culture. I think calling a name “African” is just as absurd as calling a name “European”. There are about a hundred major African languages, so I wasn’t going to use a name if I couldn’t trace it back to the root language. For Adannaya the root language is is Igbo, mostly spoken in southeastern Nigeria. Someone who knows more than me about the region would know if it was a common name or not, I have no idea, but I liked how it sounded.

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Anyhow, I’m traveling today, so I’ve pre-scheduled this to rule in my absence. I’ve nearly worked my way through my backlog that I spent so much of February and March building. I suppose this means I’ll be drawing a fair bit over the next few weeks trying to get caught up again. What I really need is another snow closing… but I doubt that’s going to happen. 🙂

Meet Octavia- A New Printable Paper Doll In Black and White

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{Link to a printable PDF of the Octavia paper doll}

I have to confess that this was a paper doll of contrasts. I like certain parts (her hair and her shoes) and I dislike other parts, but I think all in all, it came out well enough for me to post it. I wasn’t totally pleased with her mouth, so that got changed a bit with Photoshop to make her look less angry. Her hair style is based on one a student in one of my graduate courses wore her hair in. I always thought it was neat and I loved how huge the side buns were with her hair teased out a bit.

Somehow, she made it look sophisticated rather than absurd.

Enjoy the paper doll. There will be another one up on Monday.

In a fairly unrelated note, check out these beautiful kimono’s made from African fabrics. I am totally in love with these, but then I am obsessed with anything which mixes cultural garments.

Calla in Colors… Peaches and Ice

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Originally, I was going to call this peaches and cream, but I already used cream, so I had to come up with something else to call it. I’d say what I thought of this color set in detail, but I don’t want to influence people. Needless to say, I do really like the two tone blouse and I think it changes the look of the garment considerably.

I think it’s interesting what this soft color palette does for the edgy clothing. Very different look from the other sets. color-swatch-peaches (1)

And since we’ve had the whole set of Calla’s posted this this week, I’m curious if people’s favorites turned out to be the ones they thought would be their favorites based on the swatches. Peaches and Ice was winning the swatch poll, but on the actual paper dolls it’s not my favorite. What do other people think?

Calla in Color: Mango and Strawberry

I will be at work late tonight, so I am writing this post early in the morning. I do evening reference shifts about twice a month and I enjoy it. Since I work down in the Special Collections, I tend to get specialized varieties of questions, but when I’m at the reference desk, I get all sorts of random questions. My favorite was an evening when I got asked about both Chinese acrobats and the economics of fisheries on the Gulf of Mexico.

Anyway, my point is that when writing blog entries early in the morning, you have to lower your standards for my coherence.

 

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color-swatch-mangoWhen I use these cheery fruity colors, I always find myself thinking of the tropics. I imagine Calla walking the streets of somewhere warm- Miami or Brazil- and drinking something iced out of a coconut. By the way, I totally think Kandi would steal the black skirt with the pink piping.

I seem to have some weird conviction that tropical colors means tropical places.

The only downside of writing posts in the morning is that it makes it so I end up posting two in the same day…. I shall have to think on that one was a problem. Oh well….

Calla in Colors… Avacado and Cream

There’s something intensely 1970’s about this color scheme on Calla. Avacado is a color I’ll always associate with the 1970s. My highschool was decorated in avocado, burnt orange and sort of a muddy yellow color. Whenever anyone talks about how “classic” a color combination is, I think back to the rather horrid colored lockers and wonder if some design team thought that about them.

Of course, after I graduated, they did a remodel and now it’s a much more attractive grey, red and teal building.

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color-swatch-avacado (1)I have included the color swatch for this set, so you can see how the colors turned out when put on the actual paper doll. I usually collect colors on swatches if I am doing a large set (such as the Flock Modern Girl) and then keep them carefully saved as a file called something creative like “Color Palette”. I am particularly pleased with how nicely Calla’s warm mocha skin tone goes with the spicey orange red color and, in hindsight, I wish I’d used more of it in the set.

My love of Calla’s hair remains intense.

By the way, I just discovered a new paper doll blog. I am rather annoyed that I didn’t know it existed before this. I am so out of the loop sometimes… Yeesh. Paper Doll School is fairly new on the blog scene, only been around since June. I adore her tutorials and will probably be trying out some of her techniques myself, especially her advice on Photoshop, a tool I’m always trying to learn more about. Plus she has the cutest grinning bride paper doll on her blog. So, go visit her if you get a chance.