Ahhhh yes. Another year's end, another paper doll gift to give. I love a paper doll. I love two paper dolls twice as much. And this is a two for one deal, so bargain! This year I chose the really beautiful Vionnet from Danielle Meder's amazing troupe of fashion dolls at Final Fashion. The perfect lady-gift. If a last minute gift is required and if it's required immediately, these print out PDF's are just perfect and at $12USD , theres some proper value here. Two dolls and twenty outfits! My golly.
But of course, it wasn't enough for me that Danielle must have spent countless hours researching and developing these dolls (and she really must have, figuring out how a couture gown should fall & drawing it is no small feat), I had to spend a similar amount of time kitting these ladies up in a fancy gift package. The Vionnet dolls and garments are something special, very inspiring, so I went all classy looking in the presentation
If one has more than a passing interest in fashion, as I do, the name "Vionnet" would ring some bells but not much beyond 'last-century-couture-fashion-designer' or similar maybe, and if that is the case, get some fascinating reading in here. Danielle has a sharp eye for fashion research and the comparisons between Chanel & Vionnet in both style, attitude, legacy and commercial successes makes for some really good reading.
I love Danielle's blog even though she's declared it dead (much clever observational deduction at Final Fashion) and really, the paper dolls will live forever. So it's the gift of choice for the discerning aesthete lady,..like my sister! I'm so excited to give this to her, clothes and fashion are the bedrock of sisterly petty jealousies but I think we'll be agreed on Vionnet. And the lilac gown on the cover reminds me so much of a dress, a homemade dress, that she wore once to a Uni ball, she was SO beautiful, still is.
For much more detail on making a gift folder similar to this, see my previous posts here, where I made two folders from the "London & Milan SS13" collection. A few progress shots of this time around:
I did a few things differently this time, I wanted to make more substantial stands; the last two were made for shipping to London & therefor had to be lightweight and non bulky, hence the folding stands & the all-in-one folders. I again used the base shape design as shown on the PDF, in this case a rounded edge rectangle which easily lent itself to a sturdy wedged setup, cut from some scrap pine planking. I did spray paint these white but in the end decided I liked the look of the paper card with the dolls fixed on top; this fixed up any defects in the rough pine, as well as covering over the cut wedge channel. Neat-o. Keeping the shape's hand drawn outline - not a sharp square edge - was deliberate. Heh. No, it really was, this is handmade love.
The triangular wedges just, well, wedged in, so the whole package wasn't bulky & still slimline flat enough for mailing. For the dolls themselves, quick plain paper prints were spray adhesived to 3mm MDF which I cut out with my handy scroll saw. I love that thing and it has been SO handy to have around; the last dolls were printed onto stiff card, pre scroll saw days. The more substantial depth & weight of these dolls looks a lot better. The MDF does need a little filing & sanding - I hate juggered cut edges - which was then painted with black acrylic to the back & sides & THEN I cut out a good print of the doll on lightweight card & glued this onto the wooden shape. The edges of the cut card need blacking out too. See?? I told you this was time consuming. Looks better this way though, trust me those white edges have gotta go.
Lastly, I drilled a 2mm hole into the front top of the rectangular base, against the doll, big enough for a bamboo skewer to stick into, which I then spot glued up against the back of the figure, just for extra support so it wont lean or tilt but stay uppity vertically nicely. Smiley :)
As for the folder, this was quick as I had made a couple of extra folders last time around, here, and this time I covered it with a gorgeous chocolate bronze silk satin, soooo classy I tell you. I used spray adhesive but next time I'll try a Vellum spray, the tack on that regular Super77 is SO grabby, very stressful getting the fabric grain squared. The "Vionett" label is the brand's own logo with the oh-so-lovely back view doll over, mounted on foam adhesive so she sits out a little from the cover & there's a bit of a shadow line around her. I had to trim all the costume pages to fit within the narrow folder & wish now I'd fixed some lingerie elastic across one leaf, under the black card window mount, to keep them all in place but never mind, I made a large circular band of elastic to go around the whole lot & I must say, this looks mighty fine against the white label.
My diorama has been terribly useful to have around. It now has two flooring options, art gallery warm timber effect or art gallery edgy concrete effect. See dioramas here. I've used this little set-up for a photographing a few things now, must make a slightly larger one too. I love the stage like presentation.
So now all that remains is for my sister to open her present, excited to give this to her! And dont forget, get paper dolls from here. Instant gift, unless you're into over producing the whole thing like this: