Move Over Coloring Books, Paper Dolls for Adults Is The New Thing.

paper dolls for adults

If It’s Hip, It’s Here pride ourselves on having the largest and most up-to-date database of cool Coloring Books for Grown-Ups on Pinterest with over 500. But that’s soooo 2017. Now it’s Paper Dolls for Adults that are the hottest new activity.

Paper Dolls for Adults

Detail of the Ryan Gosling Paper Doll

Once for little chubby fingers with safety scissors, the Paper Doll has grown up. Into Drag Queens, Goth Girls, Politicians and even Ryan Gosling. Yes, sigh…The Gos. Between the large publishing houses and independent publishers, there are more types of paper dolls than you can imagine. Technological advances in printing brought us sticker dolls and magnetic dress-up dolls, but for the purposes of this post, I am not including those, but instead focusing on the good ol’ fashioned paper craft.

From Politics to Pope Francis, no one is immune.

Buy the Hillary Rodham Clinton Presidential Playset here

• Buy the Political Circus Inaction Figures paper dolls here
Shop other Political Paper Dolls here.
Buy the Pope Francis paper doll here.

The classic female paper doll has evolved a long way. Now you can dress up Authors, Artists, Animals, Faeries and Actors in Drag.

Buy the Life’s A Drag paper dolls book here

Current TV Shows such as Rupaul’s Drag Race and the BBC’s Doctor Who have new paper doll books out.

Buy RuPaul’s Drag Race Paper Doll Book here

Buy The Doctor Who Paper Dolls Book here

Even Project Runway has gotten in the game with their extraordinary set of 10 paper dolls whose fashions you can design and a book of Fashion Through The Ages Paper Dolls.

Buy the Project Runway Models to The Runway kit here.
Buy the Project Runway Fashion Through The Ages Paper Dolls here.

There are Paper Dolls books that show you how to  “Dress The Yeezy Way” or more like Tom’s of Finland with Thom Magister’s Leathermen Paper Dudes.

• Buy the Kanye Paper Doll book here.
• Buy the Leathermen Paper Doll Book here.

Explore your Goth side with Little Girl Lost Paper Dolls by contemporary artist  Mab Graves or the Grav3Yard Paper Dolls

• Buy Mab Graves Little Girls Lost paper doll book here.
• Buy the Grav3Yard Paper Dolls book here

Baby Boomers and Gen-Xers will love the nostalgic paper dolls like Classic TV Moms and Soap Opera Divas.

Buy the Classic TV Moms Paper Dolls book here
Buy the Soap Opera Divas Paper Dolls Book here

It’s hard to beat illustrator Kyle Hilton when it comes to hip Paper Dolls. He is one of the most prolific. His pop culture paper dolls of TV and movie characters for NY Magazine’s Vulture from 2010-2015 are fabulous. But those have to be printed out.

Below are just a few examples of Kyle’s great work:
new girl paper doll

vulture paper dolls

dowager countess paper doll

lena dunham paper doll

pulp fiction paper doll

parks and recreation

ryan gosling drive paper doll

However, his Literary and Artist History Paper Dolls have been published. Each features 16 characters and fashions. Once available in hardcover, they are now for sale in paperback versions. They are really terrific.

art history paper dolls
Buy the Art History Paper Dolls here

• Buy the Literary Paper Dolls here

When it comes to hip celebs, Mel Elliott has them covered with her Film, Music and Fashion Pop Icon paper dolls. From Simon & Garfunkel to Beyoncé.

Shop Mel Elliott’s paper Doll books here.

You certainly can’t talk Paper Dolls without talking fashion. From Historical Fashions to Avant Garde, Steampunk, Manga, Red Carpet and even Thrift Store Fashions have Paper doll books.

Buy The Avant Garde Fashions Paper Doll book here
Buy David Wolfe’s Red Carpet Fashions Paper Doll Book here
Buy the Lisa Frank Paper Dolls Book here
Buy The History of Denim Paper Doll Book here
Buy The Thrift Store Diva Paper Doll Book here
Buy Fashion illustrator Jim Howard’s Couture Paper Doll Books here

Why stop at fashions for people? Party Animals are Pony and Kitten paper dolls

Buy the Pony Paper Doll book here.
Buy the Kitten Paper Doll book here

The world of Paper Dolls is largely dominated by Dover Publications. With several divisions within their company (Presidential, Celebrity, Historical, etc) they stay atop of what’s going on – there’s even a new Prince Harry and Meghan Markle Paper Doll book that is already available for Pre-order).

Over the decades, Dover has employed a stable of talented artists for their paper doll books such as Tom Tierney, Ted Menten, Charlotte Whatley, David Wolfe, and Eileen Rudisill Miller whose styles are very recognizable and distinct from one another. These range from the Golden Era of Hollywood Actresses to Tattooed Paper Dolls.
Shop David Wolfe Paper Dolls
Shop Ted Menten Paper Dolls
Shop Tom Tierney Paper Dolls
Shop Charlotte Whatley Paper Dolls
• Dover artist Eileen Rudisill Miller also sells several of her Paper Dolls at her etsy store here

Part of the fun of Paper Dolls is the nostalgia as well as the randomness such as the examples shown below:

Buy the Phyllis Diller paper Doll book here
Buy the John Wayne Paper doll book here
Buy the Nancy Drew and Friends Paper Doll book here
Buy The Supreme Court Paper Dolls book here
Buy the Carol Channing Paper Doll book here
Buy The Chinatown Paper Dolls book here

Artist Julie Allen Matthews, who had a popular paperdoll blog, now has a series of self-published Paper Doll books worth checking out.

Shop Julie Matthews Paper Doll Books here

There are so many that we’ve now got an enormous Paper Doll Pinterest Board with over 240.

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