Many of us enjoyed the fascination of paper dolls when we were young, they’re a wonderful toy that provided us with a cute creative outlet. I loved them so much as a child that I’ve decided to devote a post to them, including some history curtesy of Wikipedia. Not only do they inspire fashion design and creativity but they’re easy as pie to make!

Apparently paper dolls have been around for a long time, too, as long as there’s been paper. Centuries ago, in Asia, faces were applied to paper and used in religious rituals and ceremonies. The dolls at that time, however, did not have clothes. The earliest account of the paper dolls we’re more familiar with is in France during the mid-eighteenth century. They created puppets, called pantins, with hand-drawn and hand-painted fashions.

In America the biggest producer of paper dolls was McLoughlin Brothers, founded in the early 1800s. They sold out to Milton Bradley in the 1920s which is around the time paper dolls became popular.

These days it seems there are more digital dolls released than paper dolls, but they have have a lot in common. Digital dolls can have thousands of fashion and accessories for you to decorate your doll — tons of possibilities. However with paper dolls you can decorate with paper, fabric and other supplies which makes each creation much more unique.

Now let’s enjoy some of the lovely paper dolls our world has been graced with through the years (like these super cute vintage Japanese paper dolls)…

Thanks expo 67 lounge, Teri’s Paper Dolls and peppermint kiss kiss for the vintage paper dolls and Rushita for the Sailor Moon paper dolls!

Download Kisekae Dolls (Digital Paper Dolls)

My favorite Kisekae doll artist was always Kimiki, you can find her dolls here.

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About Amber Renée

Artist & designer that has a madmad obsession with whimsy and color.

11 Thoughts on “I Love Paper Dolls

  1. Omg! I used to love these.

  2. I used to love paper dolls when I was a kid in fact I used to have the Sailor Moon ones and I remember I used to design some of my own dolls to xoxo
    Cate recently blogged Eat, Drink & Be Merry: Liverpool Food Festival

  3. Crystal on 09/12/2011 at 9:35 pm said:

    I have a book of Rainbow Brite paper dolls!

    I used to love playing with them when I was little, but I used to get mad when the folded part of the clothes ripped off.

  4. OMG, I loved paperdolls! Pretty sure I had more than a couple of the ones you have up there. Thanks for the memories, Amber!

  5. You guys! I’m so happy to hear that you all loved paper dolls as I did! Eeee!

    Also, Crystal, RAINBOW BRITE PAPER DOLLS! Wow! I have to find some now for Colette when she gets old enough! Thank you so much! haha

  6. Charisma on 09/20/2011 at 10:26 am said:

    Those are cute and adorable, I remember when I was a little girl I really love making my own paper dolls and play with it.
    Charisma recently blogged Unable To Get Pregnant

  7. I seem to recall paper dolls being in one of the Little House books. I think Laura and Mary had a small treasure of paper dolls that they cherished. I remember being surprised that there were paper dolls back then
    Abs recently blogged Buy Nettle Leaf

  8. Thank you so much for posting this! You brought back a flood of wonderful memories from my childhood! I use to own the Barbie Paper dolls mags you have above! Lol ;-)
    Kupkakeqt recently blogged Hair Bow Tutorial Hairstyle for Short and Long Hair

  9. Nancy on 09/26/2011 at 3:59 am said:

    This bring backs memories. I love playing and making paper dolls when I was kid. I noticed a lot of digital dolls online but I am still more appreciative of paper dolls. I am curious about the material and how it feels like. I think they would also be great decorative or collectibles.
    Nancy recently blogged online dating book

  10. Kaitlyn on 10/04/2011 at 12:05 am said:

    I remember I enjoy making my own paper dolls. Now that I am a mom, I am also sharing it with my daughter. And those paper dolls were cute.

  11. Yvonne on 10/06/2011 at 1:20 pm said:

    Those paper dolls were cute. Thanks that I can download some of this paper dolls. Surely my kids will love it.

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