A few months ago, I was put in touch with Paper Studio Press by the licensing agents for Simon & Schuster's Nancy Drew properties. PSP was just signing as a licensee for doing Nancy Drew paper dolls.
I offered some suggestions briefly at first and then designs were shared with me--mock ups from artist Darlene Jones like this one for Nancy Drew 1950s Lilac Inn:
I went through the proposed sketches and made some suggestions based on the style of the faces as well as the clothing. There were a few things that needed adjusting to match the books better and other minor corrections. Overall it was a pretty easy process as everything was mostly in order.
Then came the galleys with the layout for the book. One minor issue with some feathers on the Mysterious Letter hat came about but everything looked great!
I was then asked about writing an essay to go inside the back of the paper doll book about Nancy Drew. I decided to include fashionable things to go along with the fashion theme of the book--where Nancy Drew used fashion in her sleuthing. Like lipstick to write an SOS or a skirt being used as a ruler and those sorts of things.
I also wrote up the blurbs in the inside front on the three classic illustrators Russell H. Tandy, Bill Gillies, and Rudy Nappi. PSP added the blurb about paper doll illustrator Darlene Jones.
I was elated to get my set in the mail recently and see how nicely it turned out! The homage to 1930s-1950s Nancy Drew is very well done. What makes this kind of product stand out in my opinion, is the complete tie-in to the books. They could have created outfits that had nothing to do with those shown on the covers reminiscent of the Nancy Drew Cookbook where they just threw in recipes and gave them titles from the mysteries instead of taking specific foods mentioned in the books and creating recipes for a cookbook! I think for a product to be successful, it has to substantially tie in to the books and the character. There are a few extra outfits in the book-- like the swim set and Ned's letter sweater added to the mix which were fun, but 98% are taken off the covers and to me that was what made these so well done. It's the attention to detail that matters most to me.
I am very proud to have been asked to help out with the paper dolls and I heartily recommend them! I am selling signed copies in The Sleuth Shop.