Image Courtesy of The Metropolitan Museum of Art
Ballerina and Bloomer Girls (Prima Donna) Paper Dolls
Publisher:Littauer and Boysen
Purveyor:Dennison Manufacturing Co. (New York, NY)
Dimensions:each: 14 3/8 × 6 1/8 in. (36.5 × 15.5 cm)
Credit Line:Gift of D. Lorraine Yerkes, 1959
I don't know if you're like me or not, but I like to reminisce about my childhood and the dolls, toys, or items that I loved to play with. In doing so I always say to myself, "Why didn't I save them?" I wish I had saved all of them. Some of them would be worth a fortune today.
Unfortunately, we moved a few times and old toys were discarded. Plus, what child thinks about saving something so they can have it 50 years down the road? None, that I know of and certainly not me. So, all my old toys, "Barbie" dolls, other dolls, and "paper dolls" were thrown away.
Today, with the advent of computerized doll makers and graphics "paper dolls" are making a comeback. You can create your own doll online or in your own graphics program and then print it out on your color printer on cardboard stock. Then just cut it out just like you did as a child. You're all set to play. How great is that?
In the paper, scrapbooking, stamping, and mixed media area there are so many gorgeous paper dolls being created and supplies generated to help you with that. In the mixed media and scrapbooking arena paper dolls are becoming an art form. Some of the creations are just astonishing. If you'd like to see some beautiful paper art dolls my" Paper Art Doll Creations" Pinterest board is here.
Plus, with the advent of the computers, paper dolls went virtual. You can create your own avatar dolls and virtual doll worlds. Over the years I've created a few avatars of my own, like my YoVille Linda shown below:
The Linda avatar on the left is the original YoVille (now known as YoWorld) avatar I created back in 2006. The Linda on the right is the "Punk" version. DollZ, which is what digital dolls are now known as, are extremely popular with numerous websites devoted to them. You can create the dolls, create their clothing, their homes, their worlds, their friends, etc. It's mindboggling.
I would have loved having everything that is available nowadays for paper doll creating when I was a child. I can remember sitting on the floor for hours with my scissors and painstakingly cutting out pictures from fashion magazines, which I used as paper dolls. Or, cutting out the "paper doll" pages from my mother's magazines. Cutting precise lines with the round tip children's scissors was a little difficult if not downright impossible. However, I did my best which is all anyone can ever really ask of you.
Then I would sit there for hours on end using my "paper dolls" and play acting. Sometimes we would have a "tea party." Other times we'd have a fashion show with everyone lined up. Then my older brother would come in an mess everything all up.
Ah, the joys of childhood and siblings. That's an article for another day. Back to the "paper dolls."
On my list of "To Do's" is to create my own "Victorian paper dolls" based upon my own doll designs. The problem is finding the "time" to do so. There are just so many things I want to try and so many things I want to do. My own "paper dolls" is among them.
Of course, thinking about "paper dolls" got me to wondering about their origin. If you're a reader of my Linda's Blog you know how much I love traditions and research.
The who, what, when, and where did mysteries. So, I thought I'd find out the history of paper dolls and the traditions surrounding them. When exactly did the "tradition" of playing with "paper dolls" begin? So, I did a little research.
It seems that paper dolls have a history that is as varied as the paper dolls themselves. Paper dolls over the centuries have been created for various reasons and in various forms, some of which would not resemble the paper dolls we are accustomed to today.