Cute paper pals!

Cute paper pals!

When this summer is over (too soon, I know!), a bunch of us will be headed to college, or to new schools. Some of us will have to part ways—temporarily, of course!—with a few of our pals. Today I’m going to show you how to make cute, pocket-sized paper dolls of your friends. While they might not be able to give sage advice or make you laugh like your actual friends, they will hopefully be able to cheer you up whenever you’re missin’ your crew.

What you’ll need:


  • A printer
  • A pencil
  • A variety of papers, including cardboard or card stock (Sturdy paper works best for the dolls.)
  • Tracing paper
  • Scissors
  • A glue stick
  • Tape
  • Optional: An X-Acto knife

How to do it:

Step One

Paper Doll Templates

To start, print out (or draw) this page of templates. Choose the doll template that looks the most like your pal, then cut it out. It can be easily adjusted by cutting along the different dotted lines.

Step Two


Trace your doll template onto a piece of paper.

Step Three


To make clothes for the doll, place a sheet of tracing paper over the doll. Using the doll as a guide, draw the doll’s clothes and hair to size, one element/garment at a time.

Step Four


Once you’re finished drawing the hair and clothes, place the doll aside, and cut out the drawings that you did on the tracing paper.

Step Five


Place one of the elements that you drew on tracing paper over the colored paper of your choice (I’m making a gold shirt, so I placed the shirt that I drew onto a sheet of gold paper). Tape it down around the edges, and then cut it out. Repeat this for the hair, shoes, and each article of clothing.

Step Six


Glue the hair and each garment onto the doll with a glue stick, and presto! You have a pocket-sized pal to take with ya wherever you go.


TIP: If you want to make your garment patterned (the skirt I made had zig-zags, for example), cut out strips or shapes of other colors of paper. Glue those onto the garment. Trim the edges. You can also opt to draw patterns onto the garment with markers or pencils.


ANOTHER TIP: If you want to make a more complex garment, like something with pockets, rolled-up sleeves, or a collar, trace the outline of that garment (just like we did with basic shirts and pants), cut it out, and then put another sheet of tracing paper on top of it. On the tracing paper, draw a collar, pockets, rolled-up sleeves, or whatever else you can dream up. Then, glue ’em onto the garment you already made.

Final Hanging

To hang your paper dolls, you can clip them onto a string with mini-clothespins, or even put them in a frame with some pretty backing paper. Hey, friends! ♦