She’s a Real Doll

Livening up kids’ lives since 1959!

The Barbie doll was born in 1959 thanks to her creator, Ruth Handler, who was the co-founder of Mattel Inc. with her husband.

Bare Barbie and younger pals

Over the years, designers have turned the popular dolls into an icon, and helped Mattel reap a billion-dollar bonanza of sales. They were bendable and thus posable, had “hair” you could style, and had scores of “occupations” (model, nurse, astronaut, engineer) with corresponding clothes. They’re still a huge seller!

Oodles of outfits

Several years ago my husband and I decided to visit the Barbie exhibition here, in downtown Montreal. It had been shown in many cities and now was our chance to see it close to home. Can I tell you I only lasted half of the exhibit? It was exhausting! It consisted of wall after wall, shelf upon shelf upon showcase of – it seemed – hundreds of Barbies (and Kens!) in a vast variety of outfits. I think there was one wall alone dedicated to wedding dresses. Multiply this case by scores!

Ready-to-wed dolls

I confess that I never owned a Barbie. I was already a teenager when she was “born.” I guess because I never had one, I didn’t buy any for my daughter. She didn’t pine for one. Neither of us regretted her absence in our lives.

Did you have Barbie(s) when you were a kid? Does your child or grandchild have one? Do you think it’s a positive role model for a child to play with? Please feel free to comment below!

8 thoughts on “She’s a Real Doll

  1. About 30 years back, while visiting friends in Taos, N.M., we went to buy her 2 year old some toys. While looking around, I saw a “My Size Barbie”. It was about the size of a 6 year old. I’ve always regretted not buying it for myself. (Just to have, nothing weird!!)

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I did have and play with Barbies when I was a kid and tween. I never care a whit about baby dolls. I was always wanting to be an adult and playing with Barbie was a bit of role playing for the future. I was super excited to get the camper van for Barbie – as excited as I was to get my real one a couple years ago!😄 I don’t think a doll would have impacted my self image – that was more of a peer thing, or maybe television and magazines.

    Liked by 1 person

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