Tuesday, August 28, 2012

3 More Antique French "Pantine" Paper Dolls

I'm back with 3 more antique "Pantin" paper dolls, I've restored and turned 
into digital downloads for your crafting pleasure.

 As with all my EKDuncan designs you are more than welcome to: craft, share and even create handmade items to sell using my images.  I just ask that you do not claim these items as yours nor try sell any of my images.  Yes, in many case I start with a vintage image; however an extensive amount of digital work goes into altering each image so it becomes unique and not just a posted copy of the original.  My Muse has put a lot of love into bringing these images back to life so a new generation can enjoy them at no charge.  I choose not to try and make a buck off my hard work and
I respectfully request others not to try and profit off my efforts.
I thank you and my Muse thanks you!

Now on to the new "Pantin" dolls for today!

Pantin - French for Jumping-Jack Puppet. Pantins were all the rage in mid 1700s French courts and high society.   The jointed dancing figure was a cross between puppet and paper doll and its popularity continued through the 1800's and into the early 1900's as a common child's play toy.
These figures were made of wood, heavy cardboard and even the more recent paper variety. 

 The Harlequin

The Harlequin - My updated version of a vintage French "Pantin" Dancing Paper Doll
The Harlequin - is a comic servant character from the Italian "Commedia dell'Arte".
d'Epinal a well known paper toy printer in France during the 1800's made several version of this character as they did with many others and he is most easily spotted by the diamond pattern on his outfits and usually wears a mask.  The Columbine character is his mistress.
This is the original vintage image I started with - from pilllpat at flickr
 Pilllpat at flickr has been generous enough to post an amazing assortment of vintage French paper products printed by d'Epinal in the1800's.  Among them is a nice assortment of "Jumping Jacks", including this fun harlequin figure.

I've reworked the original so that the outlines are sharper and the colors are brighter.  I've also cleaned up the runny colors that were overlapping into the inappropriate areas as well as adding in two more arms in reverse directions so he has more "posing" options without having to print a duplicate or reverse page.

He is such a fun character and can be assembled in a variety of ways depending on what you like.  
Cut and paste is a quick and easy method to putting him together but by attaching his limbs with brads or eyelets you then have a "movable" character.

You can take it one step further and create a "jumping-jack" figure just as this "pantin" was originally intended.
An example of a large "Jumping-Jack" with string can be seen  - HERE
See more about Jumping-Jacks HERE and on string assembly HERE
 I created a few digital png's of my harlequin to use in digital projects 
and thought I'd share those with you as well.
 For additional variety print "reverse" images so he can look off 
in a different direction as the first character shows.


My updated version on a vintage Pierrette "Pantin" paper doll
The Pierrot is a standard French pantomime character in the appearance of a clown or mime. 
You can see a few different examples of a Pierrot on my original "Pantin" post - HERE
The Pierrette is the female version and I find them much less creepy in appearance but I still can't say its one of my favorite characters in the "pantine" assortment; however I know may of you do like clowns and thought she would be a good one to update.

I started with another pilllipat image from flickr (the brighter image on the right). She has it listed as a harlequin, but as you can see by the first image on the left it is really a Pierrette and not a harlequin. Yes, believe it or not there is a difference in the parts the theatrical characters of harlequin and pierrot/pierrett play.  

Due to the way this character was created there really is not a lot of posing options for her, so I've only created the one png image just so you can see what she would look like put together.
She was put together "digitally" but this gives you an idea of what the doll would look like assembled.  Attaching her with brads or eyelets would articulate her so she could be moved or posed; and if you go the extra step to attach string to her jointed limbs you can have a true "jumping jack" doll.  If you go this route I strongly suggest you back all the parts with cardboard for durability.

Dover made a book many years ago with 11 Antique French Jumping Jack dolls and the front cover shows dolls similar to two of the pantins I have on this post, so I thought you might like to see it for caparison. You can still find this out of print book on sites like eBay and Etsy. 

out of print Dover publication
This cover shows what "string assembled" jumping jacks would look like.
I don't own the book so I'm unable to give you their assembly instructions; however,
my pantin paper doll assembly instruction sheet on how to make them dance can be found HERE 
An example of a large "Jumping-Jack" with string can be seen  - HERE
And some info on string assembly of a Jumping Jack can be seen -  HERE

My updated version of Polichinelle -  The original image I started with can be seen on Flickr HERE

Polichinelle - French for the Commedia dell'Arte character Pulcinella aka "Punch"
He is a popular character in French theater -  a mocking and comical hunchback; 
 that is easily spotted by his big hooked nose and his protruding belly.
The Pantins I've seen of him, usually show him playing an instrument of some kind.
You can see a different version of him along with his wife on a previous post - HERE

I've created two png images of him but due to how he was created there are not many posing 
options for him.  Below I have him posed just slightly different and in reverse directions.
You could also opt when cutting him out to eliminate his "hunchback" and if you print him as is and in reverse you would have the option of giving him feet that would point in the same direction if you wanted that posing option.

There are a variety of colorful "Pantin" characters made by Images d'Epinal.
This leads me to believe that the line was quite popular and that many years of enjoyment 
was had by those who collected, assembled and played with these figures.  
I hope that these revised images will continue to be enjoyed for many more years to come.

I'll bring you another set in the near future.

Till Next Time...


  1. Hello!
    Very colorful!
    I like so much the Pierette Pantin!
    Have a good week!

    1. Hi Sylvie - I can't say that these images are among my favorites but they are very traditional French Pantin figures; so I chose to include them in the series so others would have access to them.

      I figured between these and the other Pantins I've posted; crafters would have a nice selection of these dolls to choose from.

      I'm glad you are enjoying the posts and thanks so much for letting me know which items are your top picks.