Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Stars Galore!

The last few weeks have been a whirlwind of proposals and contracts, and I'm thrilled to say that I have signed deals to produce paper dolls of silver screen icons Greta Garbo and Marlene Dietrich; classic Hollywood's flame haired beauty Rhonda Fleming (shown here); Phyllis McGuire of the legendary singing sister trio, and legendary funny lady Phyllis Diller. These paper doll books will be produced in 2009 along with the new Jane Powell and Esther Williams paper dolls.

I'm very proud to announce that I've signed a deal with Paramount Pictures to produce a paper doll of the movie Grease! Sandy and the Pink Ladies will be featured in this set illustrated by David Wolfe, and we expect to have it available by summer 2009.

There are other projects in the works with more stars and fabulous new artists, so there will be more to report in the months ahead.

Grease™ & © 2008 Paramount Pictures. All Rights Reserved.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Back from LA

I recently returned from a fabulous trip to LA for the Fall Frolic paper doll party hosted by Gene Maiden and Deanna Williams. It was a lovely day with special star guests -- Marsha Hunt, Ann Rutherford, Jane Withers, Peggy Lennon and guest of honor, Rhonda Fleming. It was a delight to meet the stars that were new to me and enjoy nice visits with Marsha and Jane. One of the highlights of the weekend was spending time with Mel Odom, creator of the Gene® Doll Collection and his partner, Charlie. I love the Gene Dolls and have one of my own overlooking my office.

My trip was extended a couple of extra days with a stay at the home of Deanna Williams who very kindly drove me to me to meetings in Hollywood. I came away with lots of paper doll possibilities, but I can't announce them quite yet. Since returning home I've been preparing contracts and proposals for numerous new paper doll books. My to-do list these day is looking more like a who's who list! As the new projects are confirmed, I will happily announce them on my blog.

My husband points out that I tend to come back from a trip with a ridiculous purchase, and this trip was no exception. This time I returned with a suitcase from Oilily. Although it was designed for a child, it was so fabulous I couldn't resist buying it for myself. I'm not sure if I'll actually wheel it through the airports, but it will be fun for car trips to visit family and friends

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

A New Jane Powell Paper Doll to be Produced by Paper Studio Press

Celebrating the talented actress, singer and dancer, Paper Studio Press will produce a new paper doll book of Jane Powell featuring clothes from her musical movie roles including A Date With Judy, Seven Brides for Seven Brothers, Nancy Goes to Rio and Royal Wedding.

It was a delight to meet the lovely Jane Powell and her charming husband Dick Moore at the paper doll convention in New Jersey last August, and I'm so pleased to be working with them personally on this very special project. Illustrated by Marilyn Henry, we plan to have the book, Jane Powell in the Movies Paper Dolls, out by summer 2009. Shown here is the preliminary cover design.

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Paper Studio Press to produce a new Esther Williams Paper Doll featuring her movie clothes and swimwear!

We just signed an agreement to do a fabulous new paper doll of Hollywood's swimming sensation, Esther Williams. Her beauty an talent was showcased in more than 25 films during the 1940s and ‘50s, beginning with 1942's "Andy Hardy’s Double Life” with Micky Rooney, and continuing with the many "aqua-musicals" such as "Million Dollar Mermaid," "Dangerous When Wet" and "Jupiter's Darling." A boxed set of these films is available from Amazon.com.

Whether dressed for performances in the pool or attending posh parties, Esther was a model of perfection for MGM's wardrobe department. Many of her memorable costumes will be featured in the new paper doll book, illustrated by famed artist Marilyn Henry, who also illustrated the Marilyn Monroe and Ginger Rogers paper doll books for Paper Studio Press.

Some of the swimwear costumes featured in our new paper doll book have been reproduced by Esther Williams' own swimwear company and are available at boutiques and on the Esther Williams Swimwear Website. We expect to have the new book, Esther Williams Movie Clothes and Swimwear Paper Dolls, ready for summer 2009.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Paperdoll Review Issue 43 is at the Printer

Time sure does go by quickly between issues of the Paperdoll Review magazine. But for subscribers, it must seem like an eternity! There are just two of us (Marilyn Henry and myself) putting these issues together, so we do our best to put out a top-notch publication between our many other paper doll projects.

Marilyn went all out for Paperdoll Review Issue 43 with gorgeous cover art and a full color paper doll. David Wolfe provides a fantastic look at fashions of the 1960s with lots of great photos and paper doll examples. Also, Gina Bridges Clarke talks about her childhood paper doll memories of the 60s and 70s.

We have feature on Quirky Paper Dolls, ones with roll-around eyes, "real" hair, cling-on clothes and other unusual features. Our featured artist is Barbara Bradley who had a talent for drawing children for both the advertising and paper doll world. For Merrill Publishing, she illustrated several paper dolls including Heavenly Blue Wedding, B is for Betsy and Pink Prom Twins.

We also have a short biography of Suzy Parker, our In the Kitchen segment, The Readers Page (including the 2008 New Jersey Paper Doll Convention Report), New Book Reviews, and more!

Ginger Rogers Paper Doll Coming Soon

I'm delighted to report that Marilyn Henry is busy working on the long-awaited Ginger Rogers Paper Dolls & Movie Clothes book. Over the past year, Marilyn has been studying Ginger Rogers’ films (an enjoyable task for her!) to fill the eight clothing pages with glamorous, memorable costumes from films such as Top Hat, Swing Time, Carefree, Fifth Ave. Girl, Kitty Foyle, Flying Down to Rio, Lady In The Dark, Follow The Fleet, In Person, and Roberta.

Ginger's beauty and grace delighted us on the silver screen, and this paper doll book is sure to delight fans of Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers, as well as those who love classic movies and paper dolls. Although this is a preliminary cover design, I think it looks gorgeous! Thanks to Pierre Halé for his help with the title lettering.

Published by Paper Studio Press, we expect to have the paper dolls ready to ship in December 2008.

Saturday, September 6, 2008

Paper Doll Convention Updates

The 2008 Paper Doll Convention, held August 6-10 in Piscataway, NJ, was fabulous! Convention organizer Linda Ocasio and her team did a fantastic job. The event was filled with paper doll workshops and talks, programs and exhibits, dress-up dinners and everyone's favorite--the sales room! Two side trips were offered, one to the New Jersey Historical Society and one to the Fashion Institute of Technology in New York City.

David Wolfe was our emcee for this year's convention. A highly regarded speaker in the fashion industry, we certainly appreciate David's willingness to volunteer for our paper doll group. Another talented speaker, Mel Odom, creator of the Gene doll collection, treated us to a lovely program on Sunday morning. Our special star guests were Jane Powell and her husband Dick Moore who attended our dinner and program Thursday evening. We all received a special souvenir paper doll by Marilyn Henry of Jane featuring her movie clothes. Artists Tom Tierney and Gregg Nystrom presented Jane with their own Jane Powell paper dolls. Look for Gregg's art in the upcoming issue of Paper Doll Studio featuring Broadway paper dolls.

Next year's convention is scheduled for September 30-October 3, 2009 at the Embassy Suites Hotel in Las Vegas. Details are posted on OPDAG's website. Pre-convention activities will be offered on the 29th, but we don't have details yet. The convention host is Deanna Williams who can be reached by email or phone 626-284-1502.

Paper doll conventions are a great way to connect with other people who love paper dolls and escape into a world of paper doll delights.

Friday, July 25, 2008

Esther, Sonja, Marsha and the Steppers are here!

Our newest paper doll books arrived this week! The advance orders have all been mailed so if you're waiting for one or more of the new books, you should receive your package in 1-2 weeks. All four books are lovely! I'm especially pleased with the Esther Williams book as it was a group effort and came out positively gorgeous! Reproduced from the 1953 paper doll/coloring book, it has eight clothing pages, four of which were hand-colored by Marilyn Henry. She's so skillful at rendering fabrics--her silk looks like silk, taffeta looks like taffeta and so on. David Wolfe wrote the biography for this book, as he did with our other star books. And our newest edition to our paper doll family, Pierre Halé, helped with the page restoration work in Photoshop. He also applied his Photoshop skills to our next three books.

The Sonja Henie book is lovely, with eight pages of clothes for all occasions. A highly sought-after paper doll from 1941, it's nice to offer this as a reproduction. The Six Little Steppers is another group effort with six pages of clothes, digitally restored by Pierre, plus two additional dress-up clothing pages by Judy M Johnson. The cover art by Charlot Byj is too cute too resist! Finally we have the beautiful Marsha Hunt paper doll illustrated by David Wolfe. Filled with costumes from her 1930s and 40s movie roles, this book was created in collaboration with Marsha herself.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Paper Doll Studio Issue 91 has been Mailed

OPDAG's Paper Doll Studio Issue 91, featuring Lingerie, Loungewear and Sleepwear, was mailed on Tuesday, July 9, 2008, so subscribers should receive their issue sometime in the next 1-3 weeks. I'm happy to say this is our very first issue with a full color cover! This issue is filled with lovely theme related paper doll art plus a dress-a-doll. David Wolfe offers a look at "Hollywood Undressed" featuring memorable lingerie and loungewear worn on the big screen. Johana Anderton offers some drawing tips and Sylvia Kleindist provides a photo review of undergarments through the decades. Our featured artist (and cover artist) is Charlotte Krause.

Saturday, July 5, 2008

New Logo for Paper Studio Press

I'm delighted to finally have an honest-to-goodness logo for my publishing house, Paper Studio Press. The design is courtesy of David Wolfe. While vacationing in Palm Springs, David cut the accordion of paper dolls, which was later scanned into Adobe Illustrator by our computer guru, Pierre Halé. Next Pierre, prepared a page of different logo ideas, each using the row of dolls but with different typestyles and layouts. Some of the designs were contained inside a frame, but I chose a logo with a more open format, giving me the opportunity to show the logo rather large on our letterhead. Although Pierre had some great font ideas, none of them seemed quite right. I didn't want anything too modern, as my product line is filled with nostalgic paper dolls. But I didn't want anything too decorative either. In the end, I found a font in my own font library and set it in place. So the final logo is a group creation and I'm very thankful to David and Pierre for all their help.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

OPDAG's Lingerie Issue is under way

We've received lots of great submissions for our dress-a-doll as well as some nice paper dolls for our lingerie/loungewear/sleepwear theme. I'm currently in the scanning/typing stage with takes a loooong time.

To my surprise, our featured artist, Charlotte Krause, sent her cover art in color. Not only is she the first artist to send her cover art in color, she did so being completely unaware of our plans to add the extra color pages. In the past, we would have half-toned the art so it would appear in shades of grey, but now her lovely art can be shown in full color. The two additional color pages will appear on the inside front and back cover to show off some of our colorful theme art submissions.

Dress-a-doll issues are usually extra large, and it will be a challenge to keep this issue at 36 pages. It's an extra expense to add the color pages, so it helps a great deal to keep the page count down. Although, with this issue, it may not be possible.

I'm hoping to go to press in by the end of the month so the issues can get out in the mail early to mid July. Shown here: a dress-a-doll outfit by Laura Snow.

Friday, May 30, 2008

1944 Girlfriends Paper Doll

Since the lovely Girlfriends paper doll appeared in Issue 42 of our Paperdoll Review magazine, several readers have asked if a reproduction is available. Nothing is available now, but we plan to do a reproduction book through Paper Studio Press sometime in 2009.

The wardrobe in this book is filled with great examples of World War II era fashions. The five girlfriends have clothes for practically every occasion in a girl's life from Victory gardening to dancing at the USO. There are plaids, prints, polka dots, military wear, beach wear and Latin style outfits. An all around great book! Check out the Paperdoll Review website sometime in 2009 for ordering information.

Saturday, May 24, 2008

New Betty Hutton Paper Doll in Progress

Her effervescent personality, quirky character roles and lovely singing voice makes Betty Hutton one of my most favorite 1940s stars, and I'm delighted to be publishing a new, glamorous paper doll of Betty.

Produced with permission from her estate, the paper doll book will feature movie clothes from Annie Get Your Gun, The Greatest Show on Earth, Let's Dance, The Stork Club and others.

Betty's exuberance is infectious and I can't help but be happy when I watch one of her movies. My mom, Judy M Johnson, is an even bigger Betty Hutton fan, and is especially pleased to be illustrating this special, commemorative paper doll.

Published through Paper Studio Press, the books will be available sometime in November or December 2008. We're not ready to take advance orders yet, but as soon as we are I'll add the product information to the Paperdoll Review website.

Meanwhile, here is a sneak preview of the artwork. This is a preliminary back cover, showing the pretty Betty doll dressed in a costume from Annie Get Your Gun along with a pretty gown from Here Come the Waves.

Friday, May 23, 2008

Awesome New E-newsletter Service

I'm elated to announce that I've signed up with an Email marketing service so I can now send out decent looking newsletters on a regular basis. Prior to this, I was using my Microsoft email program, but there were many compatibility issues resulting in a lot of bounced messages. The new service, called Constant Contact, is perfect for small business needs. I can manage my list securely, prepare newsletters with easy-to-use, attractive templates, and they have a very strict policy on keeping spammers out of their service. This was a big concern of mine, as I didn't want to arbitrarily choose an email service that may not be reputable.

Last week I spoke to a web design person who is taking over a client's website. The topic of emailing clients came up and I asked if he had any recommendations for a service that can handle bulk e-mailing. And sure enough he did! The weird thing is, I had been trying to get out of doing my client's website for a year, and after all this time, they finally got a new webmaster. It was a fluke that the topic of e-newsletters came up, and I was able to get the information just when I needed it most.

If you want to join the mailing list, there's a box in the lower right section of this page. And if you're interested in using Constant Contact for your own e-newsletters, let me know and I can set you up with a referral and we can each get a $30 credit to our Constant Contact accounts. I love the service and would promote it anyway, but $30 is $30!

Shown here, In Our Back Yard, a super cute reproduction of Pelagie Doan's 1941 paper doll. This is one of our new folio format paper dolls, digitally restored by Judy M Johnson.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

New Catalog and New Paper Dolls

Our new catalog No. 14 is at the printer. We've added several new folio sets of children and baby paper dolls including Pelagie Doane's In Our Backyard, Betty Campbell's Down on the Farm and Fern Bisel Peat's Mary Ann Grows Up. We also have a nice reproduction set of Hilda Miloche magazine paper dolls. These are color laser sets that have been digitally restored by Judy M Johnson.

I've included more Dover books this time. There are a few new titles such as Soap Opera Divas and Famous Movie Wedding Gowns, and many feature historical figures and fashions including Marie Antoinette and Fashions Through the Ages. There are a couple brand new paper dolls by Tom Tierney, published by Schiffer Books -- Famous Texas Men and Famous Texas Women.

Typically, I'm behind in getting new products added to our website, but this time I'm happy to report that Pierre Halé has taken care of our web updates. He's David Wolfe's son-in-law and has done David's new Paperdollywood website. If interested in Pierre's web design services contact him at Pierrehale@gmail.com.

Saturday, May 10, 2008

A New Doris Day Paper Doll in the Works

I've been working with Doris Day biographer, Pierre Patrick, to get permission to do a new Doris Day paper doll based on her TV series and movies. He's been in touch with the company who produces the Doris Day TV Show DVD sets and we're hoping to do a cross promotion. Pierre has been marvelous to work with and I hope we'll get things finalized soon! Shown here, Que Sera Sera, the Magic of Doris Day Through Television by Pierre Patrick and Garry McGee. It's filled with fabulous photos from her TV show. I hope to post again soon with more news about this exciting project. Meanwhile, our Doris Day reproduction paper doll has been selling so well that we had to do a second printing!

Friday, April 18, 2008

Tips on Living the Vintage Lifestyle

The 1940s brought us some of the most fabulous paper dolls, and now we can capture the glamour and style of that era with the help of Amanda Hallay's how-to videos on YouTube. To get that classic 1940s victory roll hairstyle, check out Amanda's 1940s Hair in Under 5 Minutes video. Once your hair is styled to perfection and you're dressed in your heavily shoulder-padded floral print dress you can learn to prepare a perfect cocktail in Amanda's 1940s Classic Cocktail in Under 1 Minute video.

Daughter of paper doll artist and fashion expert, David Wolfe, Amanda works in the fashion industry as an editor and forecaster. She also lectures on the topics of fashion and culture.

Shown here, Betty Grable with her signature victory roll hairstyle in the 1943 reproduction paper doll known as the Victory set.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Paper doll paperwork

Now that Paperdoll Review Issue 42 is at the printer, I'm focusing on those to-do items I've been avoiding for weeks, and in some cases, months! In preparation for the four new books scheduled for August 2008, I've prepared new book forms and other marketing material for my distributor, Greenleaf Book Group. Another big project was to officially assign ISBN numbers to the book through Bowker, an online service for authors and publishers.

An even bigger project has been tackling the basement. To make space for future paper doll books, I cleared out a tall shelving unit filled with over-runs of full color paper doll inserts from OPDAG's Paper Doll Studio and Paperdoll Review covers. And what better way to get rid of the covers than give them to our customers! So while supplies last, we'll include a sampling of paper doll inserts and covers with each paper doll order.

Shown here, a lovely paper doll by Ralph Hodgdon for our hat-themed issue of Paper Doll Studio, summer 2002.

Friday, April 11, 2008

Paperdoll Review 42 at the Printer

The proof for Issue 42 just arrived from the printer and it's gorgeous! David Wolfe's pretty Andrew's Sisters cover art sets the tone for our informative feature article on World War II era fashions. I won't show the back cover yet... you'll have to wait for your issue to arrive to see the six outfits for the girls. The issues should be in the mail April 21, so subscribers will receive issues sometime late April-Early May. Enjoy!

Thursday, April 3, 2008

Doris Day's Birthday

Today, from noon to 9 pm EST, Magic93.com will be have an all Doris Day to celebrate her birthday. Doris herself is listening and will call in along with many of her friends. You can listen on-line: http://magic63.com/home.php It's just wonderful to hear those great Doris Day tunes and the nice messages from her friends and fans. Shown here, the 1952 paper doll reproduction from Paper Studio Press.

Saturday, March 29, 2008

New hotel for August 2008 Convention

The paper doll convention venue has been moved to the Embassy Suites in Piscataway, NJ. If you've already made a hotel reservation, you don't need to do a thing. Convention host, Linda Ocasio, has arranged to have all reservations moved from Parsippany to Piscataway. The early registration response has been very good, and we simply outgrew the Parsippany hotel. So in Piscataway, we'll have much more room for our sales room, special exhibits, banquet, and other paper doll activities. There's still lots of time to register. Visit the Paper Doll Convention Blog for more information.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

OPDAG Issue 90 Mailing Woes

It's a woe for some, but a bonus for others. Our mailing house sent part of the mailing first class, which means many OPDAG subscribers will receive Issue 90 right away will others will have to wait a few weeks. It's a woe for me because first class mail is substantially higher than bulk rate, but at least the first class issues went to subscribers who need to renew! So I hope those who receive their issues early won't flaunt it too much to their friends who are still waiting. Paper dolls shown here are by Carol Peters and Larry Bassin.

Monday, March 17, 2008

Paperdoll Review Issue 42 is under way

Marilyn Henry has done a marvelous job so far with the next issue of Paperdoll Review. I recently received her Quark document with the layouts for several of the articles. Our lead article, written by David Wolfe, features WWII era fashions and the many paper dolls representing that style. The whole issue is lovely, and Marilyn did a great job with the articles and layouts. Now comes my part of fine tuning the visuals and doing the filler pages such as Letters, Reader's Page, New Books, Ad Page, etc. I hope to get the issue to the printer sometime in the next couple of weeks, so we can have a mid-April mailing. I'll post again when the issue has gone to press. Shown here, a page from the 1944 Girlfriends paper doll featuring typical fashions of the day.

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

OPDAG Mailing and Deadlines

Our Comic Book Character issue (#90) is at the printer and will be mailed soon. Subscribers should receive their copy sometime in the next 2-4 weeks. The deadline for the Lingerie/Loungewear/Sleepwear issue has been extended to April 30, 2008. Brenda’s dress-a-doll for this theme appears in issues 89 and 90. OPDAG members are welcome to submit theme art in addition to costumes for the dress-a-doll. The deadline for the following issue, Broadway, is now July 31, 2008.

Saturday, February 23, 2008

OPDAG Comic Book Issue Progress

Our comic book character issue of Paper Doll Studio will be going to press soon. I expect the issues will be mailed by mid-March. Last time I made a huge mistake and sent out several issues without the bulk rate indicia, and although I paid for the mailing, some issues may have been discarded by the postal system. So if you never received Issue 89 featuring Erte, please let me know.

I've enjoyed working with our special guest featured artist, Anne Timmons, a real comic book illustrator! Working with Trina Robbins, she does the illustrations for the GoGirl! comics, featuring a paper doll in each issue. She also illustrates graphic novels for Graphic Classics and other publishers. Visit her website or blog for more information.

Thursday, February 7, 2008

The new paper dolls are here!

Our four new paper dolls arrived yesterday! Well, they actually arrived in Kingfield two days ago, and had been sitting in the warehouse of a nearby welding company. Because the shipment comes on two large palates, the folks at the welding shop have been really nice to allow my paper dolls to be delivered to their loading dock.

Yesterday someone had time to load them on a truck and deliver them to our garage. I'm delighted with the new books! Debbie Reynolds, Ava Gardner, Grace Kelly and TV Moms of the 1950s all look great! Margie was here until 8:30 last night filling advance orders. And there are still more to go! By Friday we should be all caught up. Thanks, everyone, for waiting. I hope you will like them as much as I do!

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

New paper doll pages online

I've just posted the inside pages of the new paper doll books to the Paperdoll Review website. Now visitors can preview the lovely costumes for Ava Gardner, Debbie Reynolds, Grace Kelly and TV Moms of the 1950s. These paper doll books are at the printer and I'll get to see the proofs tomorrow! Shown: Grace Kelly's clothes.

Color pages in Paper Doll Studio Magazine

Starting with the Comic Book Issue (late Feb 2008), we are adding four full color pages in OPDAG's Paper Doll Studio! These pages will appear in the center of the magazine, and I plan to use them as a full color gallery of theme art. Based on what we have for color entries I can show paper dolls full size or an arrangement of two, three or four on a page. This feature will replace the full color insert we've been doing in the past. Shown: paper doll by Alina Kolluri.

More Credit Cards for Paperdoll Review!

This week I've signed up with a new credit card merchant services company so we'll soon be able to accept not only Visa, Mastercard and Paypal, but also Discover and American Express for mail, phone and website orders