Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Articulated Paper Dolls - Vintage and New

I hope everyone who joined me for my series on Vintage French "Pantin" Paper Dolls made by d'Epinal, enjoyed the fun images and the updated versions I've created.  For this post, I wanted to show some other vintage paper dolls of a similar fashion as well as some more modern versions so you can get a sampling of what other treasures are out there for you crafting pleasure.

I actually started my blog due to my fascination with articulated paper dolls and my new found love of collecting vintage ones.  I had a driving passion to share some of my great finds and to find a creative outlet for creativity and thus EKDuncan - My Fanciful Muse was born. My very fist post "New Quest" showed a few of my vintage jointed dolls and then a few I created. 

So I begin today's post with the vintage paper doll that inspired me to start a blog.

Late 1800's Articulated Embossed Paper Doll from Germany - L&B (Littauer & Boysen)
I've been told she represents Alexandra of Denmark who became 
Queen-Consort of England by marriage to King Edward VII.
Alexandra was known for her trademark tall collar of pearls she always wore, 
presumed to conceal a scar she had on her neck due to a childhood operation.

*** Some also list this doll as actress Lillie Langtry***
Ironically Lillie Langtry was King Edward VII's Mistress

So is this doll the King wife or his Mistress????
 I believe her to be Alexandra since I have another doll in the series who 
I believe is Lillie; either way she is a very pretty paper doll.

L&B (Littauer & Boysen) was a German company who produce high quality embossed, lithography dolls and "paper scraps".  They sold products under their L&B logo as well producing items for sale for distributors such as the Dennison Co here in the USA.  These dolls are beautiful in person due to their glossy and slightly embossed surface.  Sadly the material they are made of is a heavy pressed paper that possibly contains a clay like product in it; and over time these pieces become very fragile, brittle and crumbly so you have to handle them with care and be careful as to how they are stored to reduce the chance of damage.

I'm going to do a new series on my L&B collection in the near future since I've purchased
 some new dolls recently and I've gotten a bit creative with my existing collection.

There are lots of Victorian articulated paper dolls out there and from time to time you can find them on web auctions or posted in places like flickr or Pinterest.  Several of my older posts show other L&B or similar articulated dolls. To re-visit those posts click - HERE


Pantins were the French "Jumping-Jack" puppet dolls that were the rave in Europe during the 1700-1800's and they are probably the base design for all articulated paper dolls that followed.

You could purchase very nice quality versions of many of the dolls from print shops however the images that seem to have survived in greatest quantity were the ones of lesser quality that were mass produced on a newsprint type paper and looked like the image below.
French Pantin paper dolls from the late 1800's
 You can see a variety of other Pantins by re-visiting my French Paper Doll "Pantin" series 
showing vintage and reworked versions of d'Epinal jointed dolls - HERE

d'Epinal may have been one of the major producers of French "Pantins" but not the only ones.
Here is an example of a beautiful doll produced by Poupee Modele in the 1800's
Late 1800's Paper Doll from the Doll Magazine Poupee Modele
 Poupee Modele was a well known 1800's French Publication dedicated to dolls.  They had all kinds of clothing patterns for real dolls and then there were lots of paper doll related items as well.  This corset doll is such a sweet lady and I currently only have the web version of the image you see here. If I'm a luck girl I'll one day own an original or a very good resolution version of her;
 but for now I at least know how pretty she is and that I want one.


A Fun Variety of Vintage Dolls

Below are a selection of interesting Vintage jointed paper dolls that I've spotted over the years while doing web searches.  Sadly in most cases I do not know where they were originally found and the resolution on them is low.  I used these images only as reference while searching out vintage articulated dolls to purchase. These will help give you some idea of the variety of vintage paper doll sheets that were made and may still be available to collectors.

C1880 Germany - from

1896 The Boston Sunday Globe from
Two assembled from the above sheet -

The Assembled American Acrobat below was added to this post on  01/02/2013
American Acrobat - I just won it on eBay!!!!
  update 01/02/2013 - I just won this doll on eBay and I'm thrilled!!!!
I still hope to one day get the full uncut sheet but for now 
I'll have this great original doll in my collection.

Just in case you are wondering why this acrobat looks a bit odd???
The person that originally assembled him a long time ago, has his thighs upside down.

When I get him in I'll post about him.
I'll probably disassemble him, scan his parts and then re-assemble him correctly.
I'll also post the parts for you so you guys can create one of your very own.

If I'm lucky, I'll one day have a full set of assembled acrobats and an 
original uncut sheet but so far I've had a very nice start to 2013!!!



1950 Denmark from -


The Modern Approach

Jointed Paper Dolls still being made today; however for the most part they are part of the 
"Art Doll" world being made by artists and given/sold directly by them on the Internet.
You can even find free templates and ideas on how to make jointed dolls of your own.
I also own several rubber stamp versions of jointed dolls for some added interest in my collection.

You can create your own jointed doll by using a variety of templates, stamps and images.

This is an "Art Doll" I created using a jointed doll plastic template I had in my stash of stuff and various rubber stamp images from 100 Proof Press Rubber Stamps.  I love to make skirts from odd items and her skirt is made from 7 images of  the Leaning Tower of Pisa. I've done the same with all sorts of images from buildings to fans to even butterfly wings

Jointed Art Doll created using a digital copy of vintage L&B doll parts and butterfly wings
 For a while I was creating a nice collection of folding ATC cards using jointed paper dolls and other items to dress them up.  The above folding doll was made with digitally printed items and the doll assembled with brads so that she could be easily stored in the ATC background she was attached to.

This ATC folding Art Doll was created using the doll template I posted a 
few images up and then multiple rubber stamps from Blockhead Rubber Stamps.

Mad Rat Rubber has great doll part rubber stamp images and accessories.
They have converted several vintage Pantins into rubber stamp form
so you can stamp and color them any way you want.
below is a link to one of the rubber stamps they make that I own.

The Enchanted Gallery
 has several free doll templates available for download and a variety of 
rubber stamp images to help give your new creation character.
These can be found on their site at

Now if stamping is not your thing there are thousands of images you can find on the Internet.
It does require a bit of effort to find them and size them correctly for your project; however,
 you can be assured of a truly one of a kind creation when you are finished.

It is also very nice to have some ready to go supplies to augment 
you collection of doll parts for variety and ease of use.

Some of my favorite finds have come off Etsy and the great artists and crafters who post there creations for reasonable prices. The best part is that many of the items are available for instant download to your computer.  I love a well put together set of doll parts - grins

 I purchased this set from Cemerony a while back and loved it so much that 
I went back and purchased several other of her sheets.

These types of doll sheets allow you a bit of variety in how you build 
your doll like the two different examples seen on the right.


Then there are other jointed doll download sheets that can be purchased
so that you get a very exact looking doll.

AlteredArtifacts has some fun dolls like the Marie Antoinette and Louis dolls on the left or the Witchy version of Marie Antoinette on the right - She can be found on Etsy
by clicking HERE should you decide you just have to have her.


YourPaperEphemera offers the doll on the left  and  RhondasOriginals the one on the right

I have way to many favorites to post here but if you want to see more...
 go to my Pinterest boards at the following links to see them all.
Interesting Projects (includes many jointed paper dolls)
Cool Image Downloads (paper doll and fun paper projects from downloads)
Victorian Paper Scraps (vintage paper dolls and other vintage paper downloads)

And if you are just not the crafty type or want a doll that has a high end quality look...
Then there are other jointed dolls that can be purchased assembled, many of which are so 
amazingly wonderful that you don't mind paying a bit more to own one of your very own. 
In many cases they are limited editions and or signed by the artist.

FreakyLittleThings offers a Vamp line or dolls while CrankBunny has a set of Tattoo dolls

JDavidMcKenny offers his fantastical mermaids and CathyandtheCat her Grand Ladies

There are just so many great artist offering spectacular Art Dolls that are quite affordable, 
you just have to browse around a bit to discover all the treasures that are available.

I never tire of looking for articulated paper dolls and look forward to adding some of the above shown beauties to my growing collection in the near future.

I hope you have enjoyed seeing just a sampling of  articulated doll styles; and if you 
have a favorite leave a comment.  I'd love to know which is your favorite pick.

Till Next Time...


  1. What a fantastic collection! I've seen some of these before, but not all of them. I am making up miniature versions for a miniature (1/12 scale setting) and look forward to including some of these. Now, if I could just find a krampus...

    1. Hey Sharon - I'm so glad you've enjoyed seeing them. Sounds like you have an exciting project going on with your miniature. I know they can be tedious but aren't the end results well worth the aggravation!!!

      I can't say that I've ever run across a jointed Krampus but then I've never really searched for one before. This Pantalone might fill in in a pinch for you or maybe you could use this Krampus head by L&B on another body I know L&B in Germany made several Victorian paper scraps of him so you might be able to make one of those work for you if you find a nice image on the net.

      Good luck in your hunt,

  2. I love them very much!
    Thank you dear Evelyn! :)

    1. I'm so glad you enjoyed seeing them Sim.
      Thanks for letting me know.


  3. I love your paper dolls. I have used the paper dolls in my art journal page, thank you very much. :)

    1. Hi Selma - They are fun bits from the past and I'm glad you were able to use some of them in your art journal.


  4. Thank you so very much for such lovely images. I love them. You have a generous True Artist's Heart! Dottie Bassett

    1. Thanks Dottie - I hope you have found some vintage treasures to play with and been inspired by some of the artistic offerings that are currently available on places like Etsy.

      I'll be adding some more vintage lady dolls from my personal collection in the near future, so please check back and see what gems will be on display next.


  5. Hello!
    Wonderful post!!!
    I remember the first doll that you put in your first post, she's gorgeous!!! It is true that we can make so beautiful crafts with these lovely pantins.
    Many many many thanks!!!

    1. Hey Sylvie - I'm so glad you like the post and that you will be crafting with the Pantins. I think they make fun Christmas ornaments and are great fun for children and adults of all ages.

      Yes, I have a special love for my first L&B paper doll which is the fully intact Queen Alexandra doll and she inspired me to start my blog. I've recently had a bit of fun digitally reworking my doll collection including her so there are now many color options. I will be posting the new updates soon so check back in and collect them all.


  6. Hi there! Oh my gosh! I found your glorious paper dolls through Pinterest and I came here to have a look and wow, such glorious things in this first post. So I join as a follower and start to have a look at your amazing collection...and I find my blog button on your sidebar! You could have knocked me over with a paper doll! It was just like being famous! This is a fabulous blog you have here and has opened up all kinds of creative possibilities. Thank you, thank you!

    1. Hey Rhissanna - I'm so glad you are enjoying the posts and especially the dolls, they are so much fun to craft with. I've recently purchased some more of these vintage beauties and have been cleaning them up, colorizing them and getting them ready to post; so check back in to see all the new lovelies.

      I love "Steampunk" so yes, I'm a fan of your sites Gaslight & Gilt and also the Steam Tea Travels blog. As a matter of fact I just thinking the other day how fun it would be to "Steampunk" some the new Victorian lady dolls I'm getting ready to post and then you send me this wonderful note. Must be kismet!


  7. Do you sell copys of these dolls? There are several I like ♥

    1. Hey Jackie - Thanks for you interest in these great dolls; however none of the items listed are for sale by me.

      Many of the Vintage images posted were internet finds and are just examples of some of the cool old dolls that use to be made. I only have them in the same resolution that the original poster placed them on the internet.

      I own a few of them and those images like the Ballerina up top, which can be downloaded at the larger resolution by following my download instructions found on the right side blog info strip - just above the email me button or go to

      The modern dolls towards the bottom of the post are being sold by various artists on Etsy or through their websites. There should be a clickable link posted under each - just click the artist name under each example and it should take you to their store.

      Hope this helps.