Long before I became a crazy hockey fan – and among sports fans, we are the royalty when it comes to crazy – I was enchanted by a Holiday on Ice performance at the old Nashville rink. For a littlegirl, fantasy came to life as I watched all that glitz and glamour gliding across the frozen stage. I left the show, clutching my glossy souvenir program and gazed at the pages for months to come.

I think my favorite thing about eBay is its treasure chest of childhood memories. I recently did a random search for old Holiday on Ice souvenir programs, and sure enough, there they were. And my creative curiosity was piqued.

In these great old images, I saw elegant paper dolls that would bring curious life to a Christmas tree. The belles, or les patineuses (French for lady ice skaters), were born.

I like the old Dennison paper dolls with movable arms and legs, and the movement captured in the ice belles adapted perfectly. I made two copies of each, on cardstock, providing me with all the parts.

Then came the fun part – creating a new wardrobe for the belles:

• I used German glass glitter, mica snowflakes, bits and pieces of old rhinestone jewelry.
• The tutus were fashioned from old crepe paper, lacy gilded handmade paper and gold tissue that I stamped with a black baroque design.
• Clouds of gathered gold tulle give them a floating quality.
• Tiny gold or silver brads attach each posable limb.

Les patineuses, shimmering in gold and rhinestones, were a natural for holiday décor. But these are just the beginning. I have collected a number of the old ice show programs, and the re-costuming possibilities are numerous.

If you are interested in receiving electronic copies of the belles featured here, drop me a line at atelier.cheri@gmail.com. They’re available as my holiday gift to you for a limited time before I offer them as paper doll kits on Etsy.

See you at the rink!…Tatie

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