The Good Queen’s Ghost’s Dress, in Gold, Black and Burgundy with Silver Ribbons

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I drew a Halloween costume one year called The Good Queen’s Ghost, a bloody blue and white gown, and ever since I put it up there have been complaints – mostly from my mom – that there’s no clean version. I don’t really like redrawing things, but I thought for this case, I would consider making an exception, and I put up a poll for guidance; the winning option was to redraw it with no blood – but in the colors it was when she was alive, not in the ghostly blue and white. For apparently it is a rule of the paperdollverse that a ghost’s clothes can change after death; the blue and white is not a color combination that she was particularly fond of in life. (I have enough of a morbid streak that I was rather hoping that another bloody dress would win, but now I am quite glad that the winner didn’t call for liberal application of Crimson Red.)

Now, the Good Queen never did have the slightest bit of restraint. I imagine most of you can think of times you have choked back biting, hurtful, self-evidently true words out of prudence, kindness or fear; there was never any such check on her tongue. Perhaps, too, there have been times where you have hidden your most vulnerable or outrageous feelings, times when you’ve wanted to share the very depths of your precious heart with someone and didn’t, or couldn’t. The Good Queen would not have understood such hesitation, and her passionate nature meant that you always knew precisely where you stood with her, whether she loved you, felt entirely indifferent to your very existence or was wondering why you hadn’t done anything useful with your wretched life, like feeding vultures. In turn, where she stood with other people was never of much concern to her: it was not so much that she had no feelings to hurt, for she was a creature of exquisite emotions, but rather that she valued her own feelings too highly to allow them to be affected by any of the ridiculous creatures surrounding her.

You might say it was due to her great power that she felt so free to dispense with the filter that, for most of us, prevents our every thought from being made public, but no: her brother would claim, later, that she was just always like that. You might suspect that it was an act to conceal a deep vulnerability, but I am quite sure that it was not; I think her vulnerabilities lied elsewhere. And in her own way, she was fair: she treasured the advisors and lovers who stood up to her, she never once took her anger out on unfortunate underlings who just happened to be in the way or messengers delivering bad news, and she only told one lie over the whole course of her life. For many people, she inspired confidence as much as she inspired fear or offense, for although she had zero tact, she was never capricious. (In this way, she was rather the opposite of the Twisted Queen, who was by the way a contemporary and not a relative.)

In dress, too, she always did go in for opulence. That she could exist in a world where the rich gold cloth of this dress would turn thin white shows the depth of whatever pain or curse keeps her here; she never would have put up with it in life. Don’t try telling her you think it’s beautiful in its own way – she would have some choice words for you.

Prismacolors used: Cool Grey 20%, 50%, 70%, Black Grape, Imperial Violet, Greyed Lavender, Henna, Black Raspberry, Goldenrod, Bronze, Light Umber, Dark Umber, Jasmine, Cream, Black, Colorless Blender

Halloween ’10 Day 5: Queen of the Seas

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As you know I generally have a soft spot for anything flowing and cool-colored, so I wanted to do a generic Queen of the Seas costume this month. If you were wearing this to a party with no particularly picky mythology or history geeks in attendance, you could perhaps call yourself the Queen of Atlantis, but I can’t just go blithely saying something like that somehow.

Lindsey commented on my blue and gold princess gown and said that she’d seen a similar one on Zwinky, but I can’t check it out because I use a Mac; can someone take a screenshot of it and send it to me, please?

The verdict is still out on the Good Queen…

Prismacolors used: Cool Grey 30%, 70%, 90%, Black, White, Indigo Blue, Denim Blue, Light Cerulean Blue, Sky Blue Light, Marine Green, Jade Green, Tuscan Red, Poppy Red, Pale Vermillion; Verithin Black and Cool Grey 70%; Sakura Soufflé White.

Halloween ‘10 Day 3: The Twisted Queen’s Black, Green and Red Gown

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Now this is more like it, isn’t it, for proper life as an evil queen? This is the kind of thing our sorceress from yesterday generally prefers, so you can see why her inexplicable attachment to yesterday’s dress embarrasses her. (Well, it’s inexplicable to her: I know for a fact that her sister loved shiny ribbons and that particular neckline. But she doesn’t remember her sister anymore.)

She abandoned her flowery princess name shortly after awakening her powers, and she went by quite a few others over the years, but mostly she was called the Twisted Queen, even during the times she wasn’t really ruling much of anything. She liked that nickname, and although she made a point of removing the lips of anyone stupid enough to use it in front of her, she would reflect it in her gowns, her crown, her banner and so on. For it amused her to force the world to find patterns of entrails, of snakes, of ropes in the very hems of her skirts, and to cause every soul who saw her to recall her forbidden nickname.

She wore this gown to a summit held in a distant empire, but in truth she could have gone wearing a clown suit and it wouldn’t have harmed her reputation one bit, for things went wrong — as they so often do around her, on her most unstable days — and she was the only one to survive the meeting. But it’s a shame for no one to appreciate this dress, so she is graciously letting me share it with all of you. You may not actually appreciate it, and even for me, it is just a little too creepy to like… but if I was you I would at least nod and smile.

If you have been following me for a while, you might be wondering if the Twisted Queen was acquainted with the Good Queen. I wonder myself, come to think of it.

Prismacolors used: Black, French Grey 10%, 50%, 70%, 90%, Olive Green, Chartreuse, Yellow Chartreuse, Limepeel, Scarlet Lake, Sunburst Yellow, colorless blender. To be fair, French Grey was the entirely wrong color to use for the armband, and the color was corrected to be more similar to the crown in Photoshop.

Halloween Costume Series Day 18: Evil Queen in Purple, Green and Silver Gown with Ruby Necklace

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Apologies for not putting up one yesterday, our internet connection gave out…

So I sketched this one out thinking “evil queen.” I drew it thinking “evil queen.” I was filling in the pattern on the poison-green dress with glee thinking “totally evil queen, heh heh heh.” And then my husband comes along and says, “ooh, it’s very oceany.”

No, I say, it’s “evil-y.”

“Oceany,” he says. “Like an ocean queen or something.”

So I put the vote to you, paperdoll fans. Who’s right?

By the way, cut a line right down the middle of the collar to make it fit the doll. I didn’t add something indicating that on the doll, sorry!