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Using Printer Ink to Fashion Unique Paper Dolls

Paper dolls have been enjoyed by generations of young girls. Although simple in design, they provide for hours of creative play. They also allow for creative design if you consider making your very own paper dolls. For this project, the use of printer ink and inkjet friendly magnetic sheet (available lots of different craft and office stores as well as many online retailers) so that these simple toys take on a new function. They can then be used as magnets and thus stored easily as well.

For this project you might also consider the use of headshot photos for a personalized touch. Also have on hand scissors and laminating film. You'll obviously need to cut out your creations, but the laminating film can help keep them safe in the years to come.

You can locate paper doll templates simply. There are plenty available on the internet via a search engine. You may want to type something like "Paper Doll Templates Free," and you're likely to find a multitude of sites offering different choices. You might consider trying a couple different patterns. Most can be used exactly as is, or adjusted slightly using photo editing software to include the headshot photographs. Those like Adobe PhotoShop allow you to crop one photo and lay it directly atop the other, so that it appears as if the face was part of the doll all along. Another option is to draw your own paper dolls. You can then scan them into the computer and proceed in the same manner. You don't have to use a program as detailed as PhotoShop. A simple photo editing program or even a word processing program can help with this part of the task.

Once you've selected an image to use, save it to a location that can easily be found later. Then open your word processing software, locate the "insert" tab, then "picture" "from file." Choose your image and insert it. You may have to resize this image using the adjustment box in order to make it fill the page. Once this is done, you may want to save the file so you can access it again in the future.

Now, you are ready to print. Load the printer with the magnetic sheet, ensuring that it is loaded correctly so that the image is printed on the correct surface and print. You may want to print a test sheet on regular paper so you don't waste a magnetic sheet.

When the images are printed, you can use scissors to cut them out. Finally, carefully apply laminating film to the front and back of each image, leaving enough overhanging to create a proper seal. Trim the rest away. The dolls and clothes are now ready to be played with. Enjoy watching your child dress and redress your creation- or better yet, join in the fun. These make great holiday gifts or ideal teaching tools for your local preschool, as well as fun presents for any occasion for your own children.