Friday, May 31, 2013

Black or Brown?

Does Perrin look better in dark hair or light brown? I'm debating changing her hair color to add some diversity among the dolls.

Maybe it's just me, but I think she looks like two different dolls with each hair change. It's an easy way to have many characters but not have to make and store many dolls - just switch out their hair. 

Sunday, May 26, 2013

Somewhat New Doll

Ettarde, or Etty (named for the character in Nancy Springer's Rowan Hood books) is a doll I made years ago from papier-mache. I was fixing her up today, and thought I'd share a few pictures of her.

When I first made her, she had a poorly constructed dress of copper colored fabric and her hair was patchy. I fixed her up about a year or so after I made her, and gave her a new outfit. She's not perfect - her face especially isn't so well painted - but considering all the effort it took to make and fix her up I'm quite proud of her.

A closeup of her hair accessory. I had originally planned to make her a fascinator, but I didn't have enough black velour fabric. I'm not really sure what it is, but it looks nice, and covers up a spot on her head where the hair doesn't look so great.

Her bracelet and stole. The fur does a nice job of covering the elbow joints, and it makes her look more refined.

Her pin, necklace, and earring. The earring reminds me of a dog paw print, which makes me happy because it reminds me of my dogs. 

She even has a little evening bag, complete with keychain! The bag is made out of the same fabric as her headpiece.

Etty is more of a display doll than a play doll, so she won't be featured in the weekly photo story, but I thought it would be fun to share some pictures of a different kind of paper doll.

Saturday, May 25, 2013

Final Warning

A while back, when someone wrote a nasty comment, I said that if this didn't stop I would start limiting who can and cannot comment. It really upsets me that now I have to take this action.

For the past few days, someone has been writing spam comments on my posts. I am a firm believer in freedom of speech, but I'm sick of having to delete so many comments because they're silly, unrelated to the post content, and most importantly, contain links that could potentially spread viruses to your computers. That's both not fair and not appropriate.

As of today, I'm reinstating CAPTCHA. I apologize to all of you who write thoughtful comments, and if the spamming stops then maybe after a while I'll remove it again. But I don't think it's fair to you or me to have to deal with spam comments, and I hope that the spammer realizes that their comments can be traced, and nothing on the Internet is ever truly anonymous.

To everyone that leaves non-spam comments, thank you very much for sharing your thoughts. I value your comments greatly, and I'm sorry that I have to do this.

Playing with Pixels

This is an enlarged close-up of Juliet's face. I think it looks really cool like this, even though normally I'm not a fan of the super-pixelated look. Her body may not be the best I've made, but her face is my greatest achievement to date.

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Beat the Heat: Make an Aquarium

Hi everyone, and welcome to the next installment of Beat the Heat. Today we're going to bring the ocean to the bedrooms by creating an aquarium!

Sorry for the poor photo quality - the weather has been bad all day.

First, draw the bottom of the tank. Color it to resemble gravel. 

Next, draw what you want in the tank. I put in colorful fish, seaweed, and a treasure chest. Some more ideas for your tank - a hermit crab, starfish, seashells. 

 Cut a piece of tape and fold it to fit the tank bottom.

Tape the tank contents to the wall, and tape it to the bottom of the tank.

Put it on your shelf and pretend you're looking into the ocean. It might not be the real thing, but it's close enough.

What's your favorite way to beat the heat?

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Math Trumps Fashion

I felt like doing something a little different today, so here's a photo story introducing some new items I made for the dolls. 

Perrin and Juliet in the tree house. I imagine they're discussing summer plans.

Here are the new items that Perrin picked out/I made.

Here's where the math trumps fashion part comes in. There are two full outfits, with three parts each. I also considered that they have one full summer outfit already. 

Here's how I broke down the math: there are 3 shirts, 3 bottoms, and 3 pairs of shoes. 3 x 3 x 3 = 27, meaning that there are 27 conceivable outfits. Without using math, some person who is very into fashion would make 27 outfits to get this deal, whereas by using math it's possible to get the same number of outfits without making 2/3 of them separately. So math trumps fashion!

I'm not thrilled about the dip-dye skirt. What do you think - does it have enough mix and match potential, or should I look for something new?

Saturday, May 18, 2013

Sneak Peek - I Need Your Help

Which one of each of these pairs do you prefer?

Guinea pig or rabbit?

Chihuahua or Boston Terrier?

Please let me know in the comments. This might be very useful in determining the story arc in the weekly photo shoots, so I would especially appreciate your input. All pictures were found through Google Images. 


Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Beat the Heat: Make an Open-Shoulder Shirt

Open-shoulder shirts (also called cold-shoulder shirts) are not only trendy but also keep you a little cooler in summer heat. Using these pictures as inspiration and Violet as my model, I'm going to show you how to beat the heat by making your own open-shoulder shirt.


Measure the shirt to fit your doll using the doll clothes tutorial. 


Draw the shoulder areas where you plan to cut, and make tabs in the shoulder areas that you will keep. Add whatever details you like - I put in a keyhole neckline and drew stripes.


Color it in, cut it out, tape it, and you're done! The tabs are important because they keep the top of the shirt from looking too "open." If you're a real stickler for proper clothes fit, make tabs for the sleeves too. 

What's your favorite way to beat the heat?

Beat the Heat: Make a Bedroom

Hi everyone! It's  next installment of Beat the Heat. 

While hanging out in a tree house is plenty of fun, there are times when you just want to relax in a place with some air conditioning. A while back, Claire asked for some advice on putting together a paper doll bedroom, so today we're going to beat the heat by creating a comfortable space in which you can chill out.

A good idea before you start is to make a board in Pinterest or Polyvore to get a general color scheme and an idea of what you like in the room. If you're as indecisive as I am, this will really help you figure out what you're going for.

So, what are the basic elements of a paper doll bedroom?

1. A bed
Look for something in bright colors - think blue, yellow, pink, orange, green. You want the bed to be bright enough to bring summer into your room, but not too bright that you can't wind down. I like to browse human bedding for inspiration, and AG's latest bedding is nice too. Some fun prints to try are tribal and southwestern, but don't use too much in the room or it'll get overwhelming. Also, accent pillows in contrasting colors can add a really fun touch to the bed. To make the bed itself, here's a tutorial.

From Pottery Barn
2. Wall decoration
You can get really creative here when decorating your walls. Some ideas: windows with beach views, colorful summer posters, mirrors, and shelves to store a seashell collection. If you have a ceiling, try making a string of lanterns. I personally love these posters below, also from Pottery Barn.

3. Carpet
A simple, small carpet can add the perfect touch to a room, plus if you have pets it makes a nice bed for them. Use it to tie the room together or as an accent color. It's a great way to brighten up the otherwise monochromatic floor! Alternatively, you can skip the carpet altogether and make a fun tiled or mosaic floor.

You can add so many other features as well, such as an armoire (draw doors and drawers on the outside of a closet) and sofa. Get creative!

What's your favorite way to beat the heat?

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Big Changes for Bella and Meredith

I'm going to pick up from where the story left off last week.

When I came back home, Juliet told me about the situation with her allergies. 

"I thought you said you weren't allergic to dogs!" I said.

"I know, but I can't always predict how I'll react to certain dogs. Ask anyone with a pet allergy. I don't know what it is about Bella, but when I'm around her I get the worst headaches, and I sneeze nonstop."

I knew how hard it was for Juliet to tell me this, so I tried to be understanding, but it wasn't easy. I love Bella so much, but I also didn't want Juliet to be constantly sick.

"I'm sorry for putting you in this position," she said. "It's a terrible choice to make. When you make your decision, will you let me know?"

"Of course," I said. 

After some thought, I decided that the best thing to do would be to put Bella up for adoption. Fortunately, a nearby family adopted her, and they seem very nice. They said that they understood the situation completely and that I could visit her any time. Bella seems very happy in her new home, but I couldn't help feeling so empty inside as I made the arrangements.

Fast forward to this week. I was in the treehouse, thinking about Bella, when Violet came by.

"Meredith, are you holding up okay?"

"Violet, I had to put my beloved dog up for adoption. Do you think I'm okay?"

Violet hugged me. "You did the right thing, but I can't stand to see you looking so depressed. I think you need a change of scenery. I'm planning to go shopping, want to come with me?"

"Sure, I guess." I wasn't in the mood for shopping, or doing anything for that matter, but going out sure beat staying at home and doing nothing.

When we came back an hour later, everyone was in the back yard.

"Violet, you're finally back! Meredith, is that you?" asked Quinn, leaning out of the tree house to get a better look.

"It sure is!" said Violet proudly. "What do you think of the new and improved Meredith? All it took was a quick trip to the salon and a new outfit!"

"That was really sweet of you to try and cheer Meredith up, but do you really think a makeover was the best idea?" asked Perrin. "Did you even ask her if that's what she wanted?"

"No, but I actually don't mind the new look. It's a nice distraction," I said. "I kind of like being a blonde, and maybe a big change like this is what it takes to break me out of my rut."

"If you say so," said Perrin doubtfully. 

Of course, just getting a makeover isn't going to magically fix everything, but it gives me something else to think about besides Bella. It's going to take more than just a new hair color to get over that, but I hope that soon I'll feel better about this. 

Thursday, May 9, 2013


Sam has his eye on the ball...

This picture was an experiment in showing items in motion. I tried to blur the ball to both give the illusion of flight and to hide the string that I used to hold it up, but it looks like I only succeeded in making the whole photo blurry. Any ideas on how to better create this illusion?

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Beat the Heat: Make a Tree House

Hi everyone! It's the next installment of Beat the Heat! On Sunday you saw the new tree house, and today I'll teach you to make your own. A heads up: this project ended up being quite a bit harder to put together than planned, so if you do this make sure that you have enough time and patience.

First, measure the space you'll be putting the tree house in, and draw the tree house outline. Color the tree in gray.

Color over the gray in brown.

Color the leaves and cut out the shape. 

Color 3 rectangles of the same size for the walls and floor. I found that colored pencil makes a nice wood grain pattern.

Color the pack of the tree house and tape on the sides and floor.

Measure the top and make a roof. Add two pieces at the ends for attaching the roof to the house.

This is how to make a basic tree house that you can adapt any way you like. For instance, I based this on Kit's tree house so I added a stained glass window (with the glassware tutorial from last week), chandelier, balcony, and basket. The chandelier didn't turn out well, so I may replace it at some point.

What are your favorite ways to beat the heat?

Sunday, May 5, 2013

Backyard Hangout

Happy Cinco de Mayo! Here's Quinn in the newest and greatest feature of the back yard!

Welcome to the tree house! It's  a great place to have club meetings, eat snacks, and read. I added a rope and basket so Sam can come up here too. Perhaps soon I'll add a tire swing.

The tree house can only hold up to about three people before it gets too cramped. As you can tell, Perrin has to stand on the balcony to make sure there's enough space. Violet tried her hand at beadwork and made the chandelier. Don't tell her I said so, but I think she should stick to painting. I don't think there's a way to get rid of it without insulting her, though, so I guess it stays. 

An imagined conversation:

"Juliet, how do you like the new tree house?"

"I really like it, but have you seen Meredith anywhere?"

"She's out doing errands, why do you ask?"

"Well, I've got some bad news about Bella. I'm not sure why, but she's causing my allergies to flare up really badly. I need to talk to her to figure out what to do."

Uh oh. Meredith's not going to be happy...

Saturday, May 4, 2013

Happy Star Wars Day!

From all of us at Paper Doll World:

L-R: Quinn as R2D2, Violet as Obi-Wan Kenobi, Juliet as Padme Amidala, Perrin as Han Solo, Meredith as Yoda.

This photo was an outtake of the ones I sent to Doll Diaries in honor of Star Wars Day. Who is your favorite character in the series?

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Doll Tag, Paper Doll Style

I got tagged! Thanks Claire!

1. If you could create any American Girl Doll, what would she look like and what would her name be?
A paper AG doll or a plastic one? Because I've already created two AG paper ones, and you know their names and what they look like.

2. What American Girl Dolls do you have?
None from the actual brand, but Perrin and Violet are paper AG dolls.

3. Do you have any non-AG 18" dolls?
No, my paper dolls are all 3" or shorter.

4. What is your absolute favorite brand of dolls?
My paper doll specialty is American Girl, but I love Ellowyne Wilde and Blythes too.

5. What is the next doll (AG or non-AG) you want to get?
Since buying a new doll is out of the question for now, the next doll I'll probably make is the 2014 GOTY.

6. What is your favorite thing to do with your dolls?
I love making stuff for my dolls.

7. Do you have a place for your dolls, like a corner of the room, where their beds are and stuff?
They live in an index card doll house.

8. Would you rather use the computer/watch TV/play on your electrical device/play video games/play with your dolls?
I'd rather make stuff for them and play with them than use electronics.

9. If your parents told you could only have 1 doll, what would you do?
I would wonder why, because they don't know/care about the size of my doll collection.

 10. Have you ever found an American Girl brand item (can be anything) at a second-hand store?

 11. Do your friends share your love for dolls?
Not that I know of.

 12. What is your favorite non-AG doll brand?
Didn't I answer this in #4?
 13. Where do you get your inspiration?
Mostly Etsy, doll companies, and Flickr.

14. Does anyone in your family share your love for dolls?
My sister likes them and my dad is into the business side of dolls, but nobody else really (see #9)

15. Where did you get the idea to start a blog?
In December I was searching for ideas for paper doll storage and I couldn't find anything. I decided that the only way that paper doll tutorials would be available is if I made them myself.
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...