For a sometimes-flimsy two-dimensional piece of printed paper, paper dolls can have quite a profound effect on a child’s imagination.
For your child, designing and cutting out paper dolls can be both an entertaining and educating pastime to stimulate their creativity—all the while, possibly saving you money from buying actual toys!
So, we’ve rounded up five popular resources to print free paper doll templates and five recommended paper doll books to give your kids. Read on to find out what makes the cut!
Free Paper Doll Printable Patterns
The idea for such pieces of hands-on artwork has been around since the early 1800s, fascinating both historians and children alike about culture and fashion.
Today, with everything being digital, there are countless websites—including personal blogs by the illustrators themselves—offering free paper doll printable patterns.
Depending on what kind of design your child may enjoy, here are several popular websites that cater to each design:
Doll Body Outlines (The Kitchen Table Classroom)
The Kitchen Table Classroom (KTC) is an online art-learning website managed by Jodi, a passionate art teacher and parent.
You can find many free printable cutouts and worksheets in her Resource Library, including paper doll templates of doll body outlines and their accessories or clothes.
Most of the designs are black and white. It is recommended to add personality to your dolls first by coloring them before cutting. Plus, print on card stock and subscribe first for free before you can access the KTC library!
Princesses (Opening Fairy Doors)
Make it even more special for your little girls, sisters, or nieces with princess-themed paper dolls.
Opening Fairy Doors is a family-owned business that specialize in handcrafted children’s products for safe and imaginative playing.
With their free princess paper doll cutouts to print, you can download a (PDF) template of the paper doll and a template of her wardrobe designs (comes in an assortment of colors).
Coloring is not necessary and instructions are also detailed on the templates. Plus, each “princess gown” has tab stickers to ‘hold the dress on.’ Talk about a unique playtime!
Disney-Themed (Paper Dolls By Cory)
Is your child obsessed with Disney-themed characters? Paper Dolls by Cory Jensen is a Facebook group owned by Jensen himself who has been illustrating paper dolls for over 15 years.
Featured on various personal blogs, his entertaining artwork almost exactly resembles the actual Disney artwork.
From Disney villains to princesses, princes, and even non-Disney characters, you can simply visit his Facebook page. Then, click on the image to print straight from your computer.
Card stock is recommended to print the paper dolls on. There are also colored designs and black and white designs for your child to color in. Go crazy with the printing!
Clothes (Super Coloring)
If you’re seeking more paper doll cutouts that feature a wide variety of clothing options or accessories, Super Coloring offers countless templates for ‘dress up paper dolls.
From male to female characters, different artwork styles, and even templates that include the doll with his or her own home furniture cutouts, your child can choose whether to color in or print out only colored ones.
There are intricate details that may require careful cutting.
Simply click on a template to convert to a printable document and print.
Extend your little one’s paper doll collections or the doll’s wardrobe but chances are you’ll be needing to buy more ink cartridges!
Dresses (Printable Doll Clothes)
Who says you have to print doll clothes for only paper dolls? Printable Doll Clothes is a personal blog by Elizabeth who expresses her love for doll collection.
She also offers printable doll clothes samples to cut out and place the paper ‘dress’ or ‘skirt’ on actual dolls.
So, if you’re looking to expand Barbie’s wardrobe with clothes made of paper, then download the free samples and check out her print instructions, such as how to wrap and tape a skirt onto a doll.
In the end, this may save you some money on buying your daughter’s extra toy accessories for her dolls!
Paper Doll Cutouts Books
For parents who wish to give their child a more formal (and well-bound) set of paper dolls, they can consider ordering an activity book of paper doll cutouts or illustrations. Some include coloring pencils and stickers.
As our top recommendation, the Tiger Tribe paper doll notebook kit is not only affordable but offers high-quality illustrations and is suitable for both boys and girls.
Although there are only two doll-cutouts (male and female) and their clothes and accessories are all rather small—thus making cutting a bit challenging—the children’s handcraft set still can deliver a very unique and creative learning experience for your kids!
Most parents have suggested helping their youngest ones with cutting and so, the DIY kit can be a great gift for toddlers over age five. Not to mention, included inside the nice box are color pencils, over 100 cutout (clothing) pieces (colored and fill-ins), and sticker sets.
You also may have to think a bit on how to fit the ‘clothes’ on the paper dolls as they can easily fall off. Cutting is needed for all clothing designs, which are printed sturdy card stock paper.
Although not necessarily offering the traditional paper-doll cutout style, the Cut It Out! Craft books by author Brian White are still fun and effective in helping your kids develop their creative abilities.
For both boys and girls, they will find countless unique and non-standard ‘projects’ inside, such as bugs, monsters, gnomes, and more.
Also, the art set is most suitable for kids older than age five and perhaps for those who usually handle their artwork with care since the paper cutouts are thin.
They can tear easily and so you can first paste the cutout to sturdier construction paper and then cut them out.
Needless to say, it is a great gift to expose any child to a world beyond doll-like characters and connect-the-dots activity and give them hands-on experience, such as with the included card game inside and humorous illustrations.
Does your little girl maybe want to be a fashion designer one day or simply like anything pretty and pink?
With this Cut Out Paper Dolls booklet of fashionable outfits for two featured paper dolls, she will likely never leave her room!
With two new little best friends to play with, your child can also learn the names of different clothing styles, such as leggings, sweaters, shorts, and more. Albeit, the quality of the artwork is not as interesting as other paper doll cutout books.
Yet, the basic and affordable craft set is the perfect introductory way to teach your daughter about playing with female friends, dressing the female body, and possibly inspire her with ideas to make her own wardrobe more fashionable.
Depending on your parenting style, you may be more conscious than others about empowering your daughter with inspiring role models in her life.
With the Rebel Women Fashion Paper Dolls booklet, you can introduce your little girl to paper doll cutouts featured as historical female figures.
Through 16 characters, such as Joan of Arc, Catherine the Great, Marilyn Monroe, and many more, your child can have fun while learning about each woman’s stories, making it easier for her to remember the individuals as it is a hands-on activity.
However, don’t expect high quality materials as the cutouts are thin, and the clothes may not attach easily to the paper dolls.
Also, you must cut out all dolls rather than them being a punch-out form. So, the handcraft book is suitable for homeschooling girls over age five.
All for one and one for all! The Once Upon a Paper Doll booklet combines most of the classic fairy tale stories you may have heard growing up and now can pass on to your daughter.
With 18 dolls from 9 classic children tales, such as Cinderella, Little Red Riding Hood, Hansel and Gretel, and much more, she can color inside the book, cut out the heavy-duty paper, and dress them up with 46 outfits.
Even for children new to using scissors, the creative kit can allow them to practice more. Although, younger ones will still require careful supervision. In the end, you’ll not only have had shared bedtime stories with your kids but help to bring the stories to life.
What age are paper dolls for?
Playing with paper dolls is considered most ideal for those ages 3 to 7. However, anyone, even adults, can still enjoy entertaining themselves with the crafty activity!
Are old paper dolls worth anything?
Most antique paper dolls are uncut and can be found online. The vintage collectibles can range anywhere from $10 to $200.
There you have it! Among our recommendations of paper doll cutouts, we included top online resources to download and print free readily-available templates as well as different themed books of cutouts.
Depending on what your child enjoys, he or she will at least be taken back to a simpler time when growing up was less technical, more authentic.