1950’s Chic Paper Doll Costume

I knew I wanted to be a doll. I love looking pretty, fabulous, and of course girly. I played around with being barbie and even a sexy blow up doll, but it seemed to have all been done, so I had to think of something different. So the paper doll theme came to my mind! I loved the idea because I could choose any look I wanted and I knew I wanted a vintage look. I looked online for ideas and there weren’t many to choose from. Most were designed for kids or had an 80’s prom theme to it. Plus I didn’t see too many plus size looks and I wanted my doll outfit to really be something that I would wear in real life. It had to represent me.

Originally I intended to use poster paper but quickly realized that would be too easy to rip, so I settled on foam board. Most online instructions had someone tracing the body of the wearer, but I didn’t have that option, besides the foam board pieces I had wasn’t long enough. In addition I wanted my outfit to have curves like my natural body. I didn’t want a “square” paper doll look. Another issue was how was I going to attach it me and still be able to get around to the bathroom if I needed to.

Here are my instructions:

  • 2 white foam boards.
  • Black Acrylic Paint.
  • Ribbon.
  • Black Headband.
  • Printed Ducktape.
  • Exacto Knife.
  • Masking Tape.
  • Hot glue/glue gun.
  • Your favorite dress our outfit to trace.

I took the foam board and an aline dress I loved and traced it out. The board wasn’t as long as I wanted so I had to extend part of the skirt into the second piece of board. The top of my dress had straps and I knew I wanted a blouse with lapel look. So I picked up a shirt and traced around that, but I was hating how the outfit looked. It wasn’t me.

The hardest part came into play. I had to hand draw my outfit. I used the traced outfit as my foundation, but did some free handing drawing. I love peplum tops so i drew that with lapels and button details and I had to make it so that it blended with the two pieces of my A line skirt. I didn’t want my skirt to go straight across I wanted some movement so I had to draw the hemline with movement and I knew I didnt want it to be all black so I drew in trim at the bottom of the skirt that would match the pattern of my lapels and buttons.

Once I finished drawing my outfit I came upon my theme. I was a 1950’s doll! I needed my accessories. I wanted a turban so i printed out a template and did the same thing used it as my foundation and did some freehand drawing to tailor it to my face and head. I wanted a purse to so I traced out a clutch I had. On all the pieces I had to draw in my paper tabs. After that I did the most painful part. Cutting out the outfit and accessories with an exacto knife.

I chose leopard print duck tape and used the width as the size of my trim to make it easier. I covered my turban in all leopard print ducktape and part of my purse, jacket, and skirt as well. After that I took black acrylic paint and painted everything around my trim. Now I had to figure out how I would attach this to myself and still be able to remove it. I glued my two pieces of skirt together so that it became one piece and used masking tape to attach ribbon. I did the same for my top and played around with the ribbon length so that it sat where I wanted it all to sit. After it was exactly where I wanted it I glued the ribbon to the board and then followed with masking tape to secure.

I had to figure out how I was going to wear the turban. I attached it to a black headband using glue and masking tape. And attached ribbon to my purse as well. I used a black marker for the tabs and simply added a pair of black gloves, sunglasses, a fake cigarette and cigarette holder and some pearl earrings and red lipstick. I wore all black underneath so that it would look like my actual outfit.

It was a huge hit. It was akward to walk in. I had to put the skirt on once I got out of the car. But as soon as it was on I got compliements and people looked amazed. A guy asked did you make that? I was told it was the most creative outfit they have seen. That I should have gone to the village and walked in the parade. The funniest part was trying to dance in it and then I actually got on a crowded train with it. The smiles, stares, and looks of awe were fun and awkward. All in all it was a great night but I was fabulously chic on the sidelines, there isn’t much opportunity to dance in this.

1950's Chic Paper Doll Costume

1950's Chic Paper Doll Costume

1950's Chic Paper Doll Costume

1950's Chic Paper Doll Costume

1950's Chic Paper Doll Costume

1950's Chic Paper Doll Costume