Aqua and Peach Elf Gown with Silver Beading

An aqua-colored gown with three-quarter sleeves and a low boat neckline. It has princess seams and is covered all over with a delicate scroll pattern. At the base of the skirt, the color changes to light peach, and there's a silver beaded vine pattern along the hem. There's an peach underdress that shows at the neckline, extending a few inches above the top of the gown. The light peach scroll pattern on it shimmers subtly, and there's a row of beading along the neckline. There's silver lacing along the collar of the aqua gown, and the dress is open over the bust, showing the underdress. The lacing crosses three times over the opening and is fastened under the bust with a brooch of silver and a coral-colored gem, then the laces hang down nearly to the bottom of the gown. The sleeves have long, delicate lengths of semi-transparent scroll-patterned peach fabric that hang down nearly to the base of the dress at each cuff.This gown is the product of my last contest, in which my readers first chose for me to draw an elf dress, then the contest winner Lorie Harding wrote:

Here is how I would like the dress colored. I picture the sleeves sheer and the dress done in soft pastel colors. My favorites would be peach and aqua. A delicate pattern of your choice would run through the dress. Thanks!

I like doing these contests just for their own sake, but also because I think that it’s easy for me to stick to what I’m good at, and other people’s suggestions help me improve. For example, I don’t think I really do a lot of dresses with this kind of light coloring, and I struggled to get the shading looking right. I still think I could have done better, but Friday is already upon me, and anyways I am pretty happy with this one overall!

Let’s get started with the next reader’s choice contest…

Next week will be a princess gown and some thoughts on princess culture. Don’t forget that you can now download combined color and black and white PDFs of all of my 2014 dolls and outfits for free! Also follow me on Facebook, Twitter or Pinterest for sneak previews, paperdoll thoughts and pretty illustrations. If you enjoy my work, I’d also appreciate your support through Patreon.

Kaylee’s Pink Shindig Dress from Firefly

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Happy Valentine’s Day, paperdoll fans, and you’ve got to admit that even if it looks like it was bought in a store, this is a delightful Valentine’s dress. Brian and I have been into watching Firefly lately, and we’re almost through the series. (So please don’t spoil anything from the movie or the last few episodes just yet; I know River Tam beats up everyone but I don’t want to know any more.) Kaylee, the ship’s mechanic, falls in love with this dress and gets to wear it to a party. In this very same episode Inara wears what may be the most gorgeous dress ever, but there’s just something about this dress that’s so very Kaylee, and probably instantly recognizable to every Firefly fan.

Don’t be surprised if you see an Inara outfit here too, or two or twenty, because I swear every episode she wears something new that just bowls me over… but for now it’s all about the layer cake dress. Until I revisit the ‘verse, then, do enjoy these Firefly paper dolls. Holly also did two Kaylee outfits for one of her dolls, which you can find here and here. Thanks also to Can’t Take The Sky, a Firefly fan site with great screen captures.

White Gown and Corset with Peach Embroidered Inset from Taylor Swift’s Love Story

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Now I don’t really listen to country music, possibly because I fear being disowned by my dad, who says if he starts to listen to it of his own volition, we will all know he’s gone senile. Still, when Janel wrote about a beautiful dress that she was helping a young friend reproduce, it was almost a foregone conclusion that it’d end up on my blog, even if it did come from a country music song. It’s called Love Story by Taylor Swift, and I think it’s a lovely music video even if I am getting teased by Brian about it.

Since she spends almost all her time in this dress standing behind a balcony, and because I’m watching the video on YouTube, I can’t really tell how the skirt looks; the corset should be about right, but the skirt is more of a guess. From this photo it seems to have some interesting construction going on, but that’s just about the only picture I can find with the full skirt. (The arial view in the video doesn’t count, but it does give away that there is a longer train on the real thing than on the paperdoll. Unfortunately, while her costume designers likely have access to yards and yards of fabric, a proper train would have run off the side of my paper. Paper Dolls 1, Real Life 1.) Should anyone else wish to reference it, I used these two pictures when drawing the corset.

There’s been a tremendous amount of interest in this dress, so I wanted to add two things: One, I’m definitely not the designer — that would be Sandi Spika. Two, Janel wrote a FAQ on the Love Story dress that answers questions about the dress and is very helpful to anyone wanting one for themselves.

I’m glad there’s no clear winner in the poll yet, it makes the Grand Halloween Showdown so much more fun…