Archives Round Up: Paper Dolls In Regency Dress

First of all, I hereby forbid any debate about what to call the period between 1800 and 1820. It’s got many many names and I just don’t have the tolerance for the debate, y’all.

Anyway, I made 1820 my cut off date, though you could argue that the waistline progressively drops through that decade until it hits the natural waist about 1828-1830 and then the silhouette really changes.

But you know, that’s a level of nuance that I just decided I didn’t care that much about.

Women’s Regency Fashion in Paper Dolls

There’s two more Regency dresses I’ve created for the patrons over on Patreon and, of course, an extra paper doll outfit every Friday.

Hip Hop Dance Clothing for the Paper Dolls

Printable paper doll clothing including a pair of leggings, cropped top and sportsbra halter top. Also, high topped sneakers.

Black and White PDF | Color PDF | More Jewels & Gemstones Paper Dolls

Thoughts on Today’s Paper Doll
In a continuing theme of Rachel draws paper doll outfits based on topics of which she knows very little, I am pleased to share my latest dance creation. I made a big list of dance styles and one I knew I wanted to draw was hip-hop dance.

I also rapidly discovered I don’t know much about dance. However, I did my research (as much as Googling- Hip-Hop Dance counts as research) and went from there.

Inspiration for Today’s Paper Doll
Anyway, here’s my attempt at a hip-hop dance outfit based on styles from Discount Dance, a dance supply store. Also, I know stage makeup is a thing, but children photographed in stage makeup look… surreal. Under bright lights, the makeup makes sense. In the regular world, it’s kinda creepy.

Specific Source Images: These costumes and these costumes from two dance supply stores.

Learn/See More
On the Blog: More Jewels & Gemstones paper dolls & More from the Ballet and Dancing collection
Around the Internet: Interesting articles on Amanda LaCount a plus-sized hip-hop dancer & Pretty Big Movement a plus-sized hip-hop dancing troupe

Last Thoughts
By the way, my Patreon supporters get extra paper dolls every Friday. So, consider subscribing if you’d like to help support the blog.

Friday there will be a round up of paper dolls I’ve created in Regency dress. I am running a little low on round up ideas, so anyone have something they’d love to see? Let me know in the comments.

Paper Doll Collaboration 2019: Pattern!

A paper doll coloring page featureing autumn themed dresses with fun patterns. Great as a fall activitiy for kids!

Black and White PDF | More of the Paper Doll Collaboration 2019

Thoughts on Today’s Paper Doll
Melissa of Miss. Missy’s Paper Dolls  and Julie of Paper Doll School have done such a better job of keeping up with this collaboration than I have. I confess I have several months drawn, but never finished.

My natural instinct is to feel guilty about this (I have an overdeveloped since of responsibility), but since in the last three months I have moved across the country, gotten a new job and moved in with my partner. I really don’t think I should feel the least bit guilty about any of it.

Inspiration for Today’s Paper Doll
The theme for September was pattern and I was super excited to explore that theme. I really love working with patterns, though I think some patterns are easier for me to draw than others. My fights with plaid are a thing that I wish I didn’t have quite so much. I also think some types of patterns render bettern in my style of pen and ink than others.

Anyway, since I knew the patterns were going to take center stage, I chose to do two very simple silhouettes for my paper doll outfits- a pair of a-line dresses. Neither of these pieces would be warm enough for Alaska in February without some serious tights. There was ice on my car last week! But they’re both fun and I can pretend warm weather is going to continue a little longer.

Specific Source Images: Well, I did look at some gourds, but… nothing I can point to today!

Learn/See More
On the Blog: The 2017 Collaborative Paper Doll Project, the 2018 Collaborative Paper Doll Project and this years 2019 Paper Doll Collaborative Project
Around the Internet: Julie of Paper Doll School, the lovely Melissa of Miss. Missy’s Paper Dolls also have created some paper dolls, I know.

Last Thoughts
Be sure to go check out Paper Doll School, Miss. Missy’s Paper Dolls both of whom I know have some really fun versions of this month’s theme.

Last, but not least, Happy New Year to anyone celebrating! May your New Year be very sweet.

12 Century Bliaut with Girdle

A printable paper doll with 12th century clothing including a bliaut, girdle, headdress, stockings and shoes. A great homeschooling history activity or just a fun paper doll for anyone who likes medieval fashions.

Black and White PDF | Color PDF | More Jewels & Gemstones Paper Dolls

Thoughts on Today’s Paper Doll
So, I am still working on the 1100s, 1200s and 1300s paper dolls. The 1300s paper dolls aren’t even drawn yet. So, I’m sticking with the 1100s and 1200s. I’ll get to the 1300s when I have a moment.

Anyway, meanwhile, there’s this 1100s gown known as a bliaut. Can I confess that I’m not sure how to pronounce that word? Anyway, it’s the wide sleeved garment that most of us associate with the medieval era. Despite being popular in pop culture, it’s actually gown there’s a lot of debate about how it was constructed.

The bliaut was worn by men and women, often in layers. The length seems to have been regional. In France, they look really long, but in Germany there’s often a shorter bliaunt illustrated over a longer kirtle. So, there seems to be some variation in the regional styles.

Inspiration for Today’s Paper Doll
Okay, so I looked at a lot of pictures and a lot of statues and I read a bit. Here’s what I understand: The bliaut is the subject of a lot of debate, as I mentioned above. Statues of the time show a very wrinkled, almost pleated fabric effect (like this), but illustrations by and large don’t. When they do show horizontal wrinkles across the abdomen they tend to be more subtle (like this). Additionally, smaller statuary (like this one) doesn’t show wrinkles across the abdomen.

There are, at the moment, several theories as to why and how wrinkles abdomens got formed, from cutting the fabric on the bias and lacing the sides (to create wrinkles across the stomach) to making a separate bodice and attaching it to the skirt.

I chose to go with a more subtle wrinkled look in my illustration, because outside of the giant statuary outside French cathedrals,  the wrinkles just don’t seem the tight or distinct in the art of the time.

Specific Source Images: Cathedral of Notre-Dame de Chartres Statuary (see this picture) & Stuttgart WLB, cod. bibl. fol. 57, origin: Zwiefalten abbey circa 1125-1130, f. 55 as pictured here (retrieved 9/9/2019).

Learn/See More
On the Blog: More Jewels & Gemstones paper dolls, more paper dolls from the Medieval era, Topaz with her 1100s underwear
Around the Internet: Illumanu (a tumblr devoted to manuscript illustrations of clothing & dress), an interesting webpage with lots of pictures, and an interesting site with lots of pictures in German (I think?)

Last Thoughts
While I don’t have a real opinion on how bliauts were constructed, I do find it interesting the amount of debate there seems to be out there on the topic. The only theory I find least plausible is the separate bodice with skirt theory. I’ve seen some illustrations that seem to back it up, but never with proper citation. Cite your sources people! Additionally, separate bodices  would have had to have been invented and then ignored for like 300 years and that just seems implausible. Not impossible, mind you, but implausible. However, I always love to hear from folks to know more than me on these topics, so share away in the comments.

(But do try to keep it polite. I’ve had strange debates and oddly angry emails over medieval clothing before which, odd the true, still boggles my mind.)

Mean while, on Patreon, there’s an extra paper doll outfit every Friday! Plus previews of what I’m working on, polls and whole different paper doll series called Vivian. It’s a fun group. Check it out!

And if you need a paper doll with proper hair and undies for this era, grab Topaz in her 1100s underwear. The 1200s Lapis can also do in a pinch, if you’re more partial to redheads.

Topaz in the 1100s Undergarments and Shoes

A 12th century fashion paper doll with shoes, wigs and historical underwear.

Black and White PDF | Color PDF | More Jewels & Gemstones Paper Dolls

Thoughts on Today’s Paper Doll
I am super excited about this collection of paper dolls. I love costume history. Sometimes, I feel like despite my love of the topic (or perhaps because of it), I get a little paralyzed feeling like I have to do so much research before I can create something and worrying about the quality of my sources. This worries me less in eras I am confident in, such as the 19th and 20th century, and worries me more in eras I am not confident about.

But then I won’t learn or get better if I don’t practice drawing these periods, so I think it is okay to not be perfect. Even more importantly, I think you have to start with in perfection or you never move forward.

Inspiration for Today’s Paper Doll
Like last week’s Lapis, this week’s Topaz is wearing a shift based one illustrated in Roman de Giron le Courtois on Folio 87v. The manuscript dates from between 1370-1380. Illustrations of women in just shifts are exceedingly rare, so even though this is 200 years after the 1100s, I am still using it. I made my version shorter and tighter than the originals probably were to facilitate the paper doll layering clothing over the shift. Paper dolls have to layer.

Additionally, Topaz’s shoes all come from Stepping Through Time by Olaf Goubitz, a book on archeological footwear finds. It’s fascinating, but very densely written work. Women’s Hats, Headdresses and Hairstyles: With 453 Illustrations, Medieval to Modern by Georgine de Courtais was the book I used for her hair and headdress, along with this statue, Enthroned Virgin and Child, from The Met.

Specific Source Images: Roman de Giron le Courtois Bibliothèque nationale de France. Département des manuscrits. NAF 5243 (f.87v) &  Enthroned Virgin and Child ca. 1130–1140, The Met, Accession Number:47.101.15.

Learn/See More
On the Blog: More Jewels & Gemstones paper dolls & More from the Ballet and Dancing collection
Around the Internet: Claricia Psalter from the Late 12th Century

Last Thoughts
I’d like to give a shout out to my Patreon supporters, because without you all, the blog wouldn’t happen.

Additionally, later this week there will be a gown from the 12th century (aka the 1100s) and I am excited to share that though I am also nervous about how little I know about this era. However, this is how I learn, so there you go!

Archives Round Up: Post-Apocalyptic Fashion Paper Dolls

I think my interest in post-apocalyptic fashion/clothing really started with watching Tank Girl and Mad Max at an early age. There’s probably other B-movies from the 80’s and early 90’s with bombed out towns and questionable clothing choices, but those are the two I most solidly remember. I think Mad Max: Fury Road is a much better movie, by the way, than either of those, but those are the ones I recall from my youth.

I was not a youth when Mad Max: Fury Road came out.

Post-Apocalyptic Fashion Paper Dolls

I have drawn post-apocalyptic clothing for the Jewels and Gemstones, but it’s a Patreon exclusive. As always, there’s an additional Jewels and Gemstones outfit today over there as well.

13th Century Sleeveless Surcoat over Dress

Free to print, a historical paper doll outfit from the 13th century surcoat design with a headdress and shoes with stockings.

Black and White PDF | Color PDF | More Jewels & Gemstones Paper Dolls

Thoughts on Today’s Paper Doll
Today’s paper doll dress is a surcoat (over-dress) over another dress. As far as I can tell, this style came into fashion in the second half of the 13th century and sticks around in various forms for over 100 years. As I said when I was showing off Lapis and her 13th century undergarments, I am not an expert on this time period. At best, I am a dabbling amateur. However, one thing I did notice as I looked at many many pictures was that the 13th century is similar to the 14th century, if they hadn’t yet mastered curved seams and tailoring techniques.

So, while in the 14th century they have sideless surcoats over fitted kirtles, that is not what you see in the 13th century. You see their predecessors- a sleeveless surcoat over a dress where just the sleeves are visible and there’s no waist as far as the eye can see. This style does continue into the first part 14th century- here is an example. Later the armholes lengthen, these surcoats are in the later 14th century style.

Clothing rarely confines itself to neat time ranges, but rather tends to ease over years and decade markers.

Inspiration for Today’s Paper Doll
As usual, the shoe designs come from Stepping Through Time by Olaf Goubitz, an excellent, in exceedingly dry, book on historical footwear. The surcoat is based on this illustration and this illustration while the headdress comes from here, but also from all the looking at headdresses I did when drawing Lapis.

Specific Source Images: Biblia Porta, Lausanne, Bibliothèque Cantonale et Universitaire, U 964 (fol.178r),  Collection of poems in Old French, Bibliothèque de l’Arsenal- Arsenal 3142 (f.292r), Romance of Alexander, England, Cambridge University Library- Cambridge MS O.9.34 (f.25v), this recreation of 13th century dress & this recreation of 13th century dress

Learn/See More
On the Blog: More Jewels & Gemstones paper dolls, Lapis with her 13th century underwear & Everything I’ve Drawn from the 13th Century
Around the Internet: Illumanu (a tumblr devoted to manuscript illustrations of clothing & dress is one of my goto places for illustrations), Manuscript Miniatures (a website that collects manuscript miniatures) & the amazing Gallica, the digital library of France

Last Thoughts
I previewed a lot of this collection over on Patreon. So, thank you to all my Patrons to encouraged me to continue even though I was a little nervous. Reminder: There’s an extra paper doll outfit every Friday, plus previews of what I’m working on and polls and things. Check it out!

Rarely have I wished I knew more medieval Latin, but when I am looking for primary source illustrations of clothing I do. It’s very hit and miss, but I do my best with my limited knowledge. I respect people who do recreations of these garments, but I wish more of them properly cited their source images. It’s very frustrating to find a great illustration from an illuminated manuscript, but have no way of knowing where it came from. I won’t use anything that doesn’t properly cite a source. I’m a librarian, after all. I have some standards.