So, on the 12th of March, everyone’s life in Ireland began to change, change because of the Corona Virus (or Covid-19). This pandemic has literally stopped the world in it’s tracks. We’re in lockdown, people are dying, economies have come to a stand still and we have no idea how we are ever going to get out of this and get back to ‘normal’, whatever the new normal will be.

I, like many people, found the first week overwhelming. It was a lot to take in. One day I was happily going on as normal, running to the printers collecting my prints and preparing them for customers, and the next day schools, creches and universities were closed! Work virtually stopped. Customers who spent years planning their summer 2020 weddings had to cancel and everything was turned upside down.

I began to draw more to distract myself, not just with may Wacom tablet into a PC but in my art pad. Drawing is therapeutic and exactly what I need right now. Talking to friends and family worldwide via Viber, Zoom and WhatsApp, we were all feeling the same emotions. I created this simple drawing ‘the World is Healing’.

save the world drawing by Carmel Grant

Parents began sharing images of their kids drawing, colouring and making crafts at home, trying to keep them entertained and I wanted to create something fun that might help as a distraction for all ages through these strange times. This is where I got the idea for the Caricatures by Carmel Paper Dolls ! I decided as a fun and creative distraction for me, and everyone else, that I will design a different paper dolls with fun outfits and add a new one to my website every week during our lockdown.

Each of these paper dolls are free to download, but I can also create customised ones too! If you would like to have a doll created to look like you, or give a gift of one to someone else, you can order a printable customised paper doll pattern for only €50. Just click on this link caricaturesbycarmel.com/product/customised-paper-doll/ to purchase the customised doll. I will request a photograph, draw the doll pattern and email a PDF of your design to you in a few days. Social distancing at it’s best!

The first Paper Doll I created was based on American singer and song writer, Billie Eilish. I thought it would be fun to draw a paper doll based on a celebrity and create three or four different outfits to dress her up in. The idea is you download the pattern directly from the website, it’s free. Then print the two pages out, colour in the doll and the outfits, cut them out, bend the tabs and dress Billie! Dress Billie as a Super Hero, in a business suit, a ball gown or a cute tea dress. Why not, use your imagination. Billie is available to download here.

Billie Paper Doll created by Caricatures by Carmel

The next celebrity I thought I would have fun with is the wonderful talented Scottish singer Lewis Capaldi. I decided to create 3 fun outfits for the Lewis Paper Doll. A Super Hero costume with a cape, another with tights and a cool mask and a third as a school boy in a uniform with shorts. I received feedback from parents saying their kids were really enjoying them and were even bringing Lewis for a jump on their trampoline in the back garden. Sure, how could you not have fun with him, just look at those muscles!! 🙂 The Lewis Capaldi Paper Doll Pattern can be downloaded for free here.

Lewis Paper Doll created by Caricatures by Carmel

The paper dolls were starting to get a great reaction on social media and I was enjoying the creative challenge. Samantha from Pretty Bowtique contacted me to see if I could create a paper doll pattern for her business. Pretty Bowtique is a beautiful Irish handcrafted hair accessories business for children, based in Carrick- On-Suir in County Tipperary. All Samantha’s creations are hand crafted and she wanted to create a paper doll with different hair accessories.

I designed caricatures based on Samantha’s 3 children, for the Pretty Bowtique logo a few years ago, so I used one of her daughters for the paper doll. I created 5 different hair bows and one flower hair band. All can be coloured in and added to the paper dolls head after you cut them all out. The Pretty Bowtique Paper Doll pattern is available to download for free here and on Pretty Bowtique’s website.

Pretty Bowtique Paper Doll

For the following paper doll I thought I would do something a little different. Meet Gerry the Giraffe. Colour Gerry and his spots in and then his fun outfits which include a jumper, a super hero and a suit! Don’t forget his shoes! Who doesn’t want to see a giraffe in clothes!! Download Gerry the Giraffe pattern here.

Someone suggested a paper doll based on the animated film Frozen. I decided to create a caricature based on Idina Menzel, the beautiful voice behind Elsa in the film. Have fun colouring in Idina and three outfits, a Elsa inspired dress, a super hero and a ball gown. And don’t forget her crowns! The Idina Paper Doll is available to download here for a few hours of fun.

Idina Paper Doll Pattern free to download
Idina Paper doll coloured in
Idina Paper Doll dressed up

So, as I write this blog post, we have another two weeks in lockdown (and that could change). That mean’s another two paper dolls! If there is a celebrity that you would like to see made into a doll, let me know and I would love to see your paper doll creations and hear your comments. Tag me on social media @caricaturesbycarmel and contact me by email to info@caricaturesbycarmel.com.

Thanks for reading!!

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Caricature guest signing board for a retirement