1930s Blue Flower Patterned Dress with Lace Scarf and Cherry Brooch

A 1930s-style blue dress with a small pattern of white flowers and green leaves. The neckline is decorated with a white lace scarf pinned with a plastic brooch in the shape of a yellow bow over a pair of red cherries. The scarf falls in a lace-edged ruffle down the front of the dress. The sleeves are slightly puffed, and there are rows of pintucks down the front of the bodice to each side of the ruffle. It's belted at the waist with the same kind of fabric. The skirt is just past knee length and is slightly flared at the base.
I’m breaking my paper doll slump with this 1930s-style dress! If you don’t follow me on Pinterest, you probably should, or at least you should select a couple of my boards to follow because I actually have nearly 200 boards. (I suggest Jewelry, Gorgeous Dresses and, of course, Liana’s Paper Dolls.) You may be asking, what does one person need with nearly 200 boards? The answer is, I have one board for fashion plates, illustrations and actual examples of clothes from almost every year between 1788 and 1965. Even if you aren’t foolhardy enough to hit that “Follow All” button, it’s fun to go to my profile and just scroll down, watching the fashions change. Whenever I want to draw a historical outfit, I’m always scrambling through Google Image Search, museum sites and so on for examples of outfits from that time, so having these boards is a great resource for me! I particularly like 1930s clothes, so I did a 1930s dress today. It’s mostly based on late 1930s styles (I think mostly 1937), but the pattern and decorations are my own invention.

In other news, I now have PDF collections of my 2014 dolls and outfits to download! So if you want to print them out, you don’t have to fuss with each individual PDF any more. They’re pay what you want, including $0, and you don’t even have to sign up for anything or have any credit card information if you get them for free.

I don’t have an elf dress ready for the next contest, but let’s get it started anyway! I will have it done by next week at the latest, and the winner can decide on the coloring then. I promise it’ll be pretty!

To enter the contest, post a comment with your favorite time period for clothes. One comment per person please, and I’ll choose the winner with a random number generator. If you’ve won a contest this year, please don’t enter again. (And Mom, you’re free to enter!) The winner will get to tell me how to color an elf dress.

1912 Egyptian Revival Gown with Scarab Belt and Pith Helmet

A 1912-style gown. The underdress is a sandy golden yellow color, with an Egyptian geometrical pattern on the fabric. It has a shallow scoop neck, short sleeves and a long, tube-shaped skirt that falls to the floor. It is gathered slightly above the waist with a wide gold sash, decorated at the front with a large brooch depicting a jeweled blue scarab holding an orange sun and adorned on both sides with a multi-colored wing pattern. At the bodice and at the hem are an Egyptian fan pattern done in small rhinestones. Over this is an overdress made of white lace patterned with Egyptian geometrical patterns and lotuses. The overdress is like a shawl over the bodice, opening at the front to show the fan pattern at the neckline, and going under the belt. It covers most of the underskirt, and opens in the front to show the fan pattern and the drape of the underskirt. There is a pith helmet to go with it, which is about the same color as the dress, but slightly darker and with a more utilitarian texture. Around the crown of the hat is a line of rhinestones.So, this one requires an explanation. A 1912 gown won my poll handily, and then I did a contest to determine who would direct its coloring and patterning. 13 people entered, including my husband Brian, who posted the first comment. Brian is a big Animal Crossing fan, and one of the things you can do in that game is catch different kinds of bugs. He caught a wharf roach, which he warns me, and I will pass the warning on to you, not to google it unless you like really ugly looking bugs. Then one of the animals who lives in his village said “So I’m thinkin’ of basing a design on a wharf roach.” This tickled his fancy, and he produced this image. He also gleefully informed me that, should he win, he wanted a wharf roach themed dress.

I chose the winner by random number using random.org. I just made a list of everyone in the order they’d posted, assigned them a number and hit the button. Brian was #1, and as I hit the button, I thought “Not 1, not 1, not 1.”

He was kind to me, though. He didn’t actually order me to make wharf-roach themed lace. Instead, what he said he wanted was an Egyptian-themed dress with a scarab beetle on it. I was actually happy about this, because as it happened, I had seen some lovely Egyptian Revival 1912 gowns when drawing the sketch for this one. He left it mostly up to me, but said that he wanted it to be a sand color, and he specifically wanted a pith helmet. In his imagination, this dress belongs to the least practical Egyptologist in the world. She’s spending her inheritance looking for lost tombs. That’s right — she got her money from her mummy! (Blame Brian for that one.)

Now that this contest is over, let’s move on to the next one!

Next week, you can look forward to a mermaid tail! Until then, follow me on Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest for site updates, previews and thoughts on what I’m doing lately. If you enjoy my work, I’d also appreciate your support through Patreon.

Recolored Regency Gown in Bright Colors

A lavender regency gown trimmed with white lace at the neck and sleeves. The sleeves are gently puffed and the bodice is ruched, trimmed on the right side with red roses and blue forget-me-nots. Under the bust is a pink ribbon sash decorated with a scroll pattern. The dress fabric is decorated with small embroidered white flowers, then at the edge of the skirt are pink swags, trimmed with lace, with pink hearts, red roses and blue forget-me-nots at the top of each swag. Intricate white embroidery surrounds the flowers. Under the swags are pleated turquoise frills that fan out to the ground and are trimmed with white lace. Long white gloves are attached to the outfit, and there is a pink wrap over the arms that is decorated with a shiny gold paisley pattern. At the neck is a thin gold chain and a pearl pendant.I didn’t finish the dress I meant to have up today (the contest winner), so for now, I will present the recoloring chosen by one of the two winners of my Oscar contest, dannyscotland! Technically, it was chosen by her 5-year old daughter, and it did turn out to be vibrant. She wrote:

I have consulted with my ‘assistant’ a.k.a. daughter, and she would like to have you color the Valentine’s Day Regency Gown. For five years old, she’s pretty specific, so please feel free to alter as you see fit. :-) And thanks for understanding. She (and I, I guess) would love to see turquoise gloves and bottom ruffle, a pink shawl, lavender dress (the body of the dress), red roses, and pink draping over the bottom ruffle, kind of like it is now. Maybe it could be a different shade of pink?

Dannyscotland, I hope you and your daughter like it! It was fun for me, because the finished dress is quite different from the original, but it does some fun things in and of itself. The blue of the ruffle actually complements the forget-me-nots, and with the lavender background, you can see that there is a very subtle swirl pattern on the fabric, which was pretty hard to see on the earlier version.

The top part of a blue gown with a delicate darker blue vine and white flower pattern and puffed sleeves. There are a line of pearls at the neckline and a wide gold belt with pearls.But wait – that’s not all there is today! RLC of Paper Thin Personas has been doing interviews with paper doll bloggers lately, and for this month, she interviewed me! Check out the interview for my thoughts on why I love paper dolls, how I created the pose for the new doll series and whether I prefer sparkly things with some shine or shiny things with some sparkle. Plus, I did a blue princess gown exclusively for RLC’s site! If you’d like to see and download the full dress, you’ll have to check out the interview.

Come back next week for the 1912 gown with colors and patterns chosen by my husband! (I’ll give you a hint: Beetles.) I’ll do the poll next week, too. Follow me on Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest for site updates, paperdoll thoughts and very pretty opals. If you enjoy my work, I’d also appreciate your support through Patreon.

1912 Dress Contest

A dress with a lace overskirt and bodice over an embroidered underdress. It is gathered slightly above the waist with a wide sash and a large rose at the front.The bad news is that I put off this Friday’s dress too long, intending to work on it on Thursday, and then didn’t have the time on Thursday that I thought I would. I should be able to post it tomorrow, and I’m sorry for the wait.

The good news is that I’m going to start the contest anyway! In my poll earlier this month, 1910s dresses trounced the competition. Since I added the detail that these were Titanic-era dresses, I looked to 1912 fashions for inspiration. As always, the winner of this contest will get to tell me how to color this gown. This is just a sketch, meaning that the decorations are just placeholders: my intention is that the part bordered with the scalloped edge will be a very detailed lace pattern, and the scroll designs are also subject to change. If the contest winner likes, I’m open to suggestions for what the patterns and lace should look like.

The contest will run until noon on Thursday, March 27, and the winner will be picked by a random number generator. If you’ve won one of my contests this year, please don’t enter this one.

To enter, please post one comment answering this question: Between the cast of Titanic and the cast of Downton Abbey, who would win in a fight? You can define “fight” however you like, if you’re so inclined: the old-fashioned criteria of “no weapons, knee deep in mud, last one standing,” or perhaps the battles would involve snarky quips, salad forks, dance prowess, making the other side cry with tragic love stories — you tell me which story set in 1912 reigns supreme and, if you like, why.