One of our readers, Cordelia, has a special guest post for us today. Make sure you read to the end for a fun little surprise from days gone by.

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Ever since I saw the pictures of Saige’s art supplies, I have wanted to create an art studio for my dolls. With the help of many ideas from Doll Diaries, I was able to create a place for my dolls to have fun and be creative.

Creating Doll Sized Art Studio for Saige

Overview of the studio. I found the large easel in a discontinued bin at a small hardware store. It is actually a chalkboard, but the ledge is perfect for holding painting supplies and I will be able to use it in the schoolroom as well. Char gave me the idea of buying small canvases at Michael’s and creating artwork myself or using cards, etc. She also introduced me to Jen’s American Girl Doll Play site on a Doll Diaries post and it was there that Amanda gave me the idea for the banner, putting inspirational art on the walls and making little art books for the dolls.

Create art studio for Saige

A closer look at the dollar store easel and canvas that I learned about from one of Karen’s posts on Doll Diaries and also one of the two palettes that I made from Char’s printable on Doll Diaries. The little paint pots are from a Melissa and Doug craft set, as are the brushes that I cut down to the right size.

Create art studio for Saige

I made this paintbox from a container that a wristwatch had come in. The mini tubes of oil paint are from a Compact Art Set and I attached the ribbon to the inside of the lid to hold paintbrushes and a palette.

Art studio for dolls

In this next picture, Rose is busy painting. She is using images from the same printable in which Char provided the pattern for the palettes. I made her art apron from felt, ribbon and glue.

Art studio for dolls

Katherine is putting some finishing touches to her sketch, also using materials from a Compact Art Set.

Now, the next three photos are the surprise. Looking at the pictures of Saige in her painting outfit triggered a memory that I couldn’t quite place. Then I remembered, so up to the attic I went, rummaged around, and found someone who had been packed away for a long time.

vintage paper doll

Who is this visitor to Katherine and Rose’s art studio? Her name is Isabel and she is a 15 inch tall paper doll. I can’t tell you exactly when she was manufactured, but I do know for certain that it was no later than 1957!

vintage paper doll

A closer look at Isabel who, I think, has weathered rather well. When I saw Saige’s lovely eyes and colourful, loose-fitting painting sweater, I remembered Isabel. And if you look closely at Isabel’s hand, you will see something else that we were all very excited about when we first learned about Saige.

vintage paper doll

The last picture shows a close-up of Isabel’s ring.

It makes me feel happy to know that both a paper doll from 1957 and the 2013 GOTY provide opportunity for creative doll play and fun with art.

With all good wishes,

Cordelia

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What a special way to connect the love of dolls, art and creativity across generations! Thank you so much Cordelia for this wonderful look at your doll’s art studio and your very well preserved time capsule in the form of Isabel!