On the 9th of March 1959 barbie made her debut into the world at the American International Toy Fair in New York. Since that time she has entered the homes of countless young children, undergone a number of makeovers, amassed a wardrobe to be the envy of every woman and scored some awesome wheels.
Barbie’s most recent makeover saw her emerge more representative of a diverse range of women. As a mum of a young girl, I think this is only a positive thing to have our daughters playing with dolls of all shapes and sizes so they grow up with realistic ideals of the female body.
But today I’m not getting into the politics or the feminism around Barbie. I just want to celebrate her and her journey through three generations of my family.
My mum has a letter she sent her father while he was travelling in the States for work in the mid 60’s, ever so politely asking him to bring her home one of those new Barbies that has the bendy knees. The result is this divine collection of Barbies which she has treasured for some 50 years.
The detail on the Barbies is amazing. Each with perfect nail polish and makeup with some killer dos. This Barbie in the pink suit even has gloves and stockings to finish her outfit.
Moving into the 90’s and my sister and I were well and truly Barbie girls. My favourite was my business lady Barbie, complete with pink power suit and briefcase. We had a Barbie kitchen, a red Ferrari and pink Corvette, the Barbie and the Rockers full band set and a fabulous collection of oh-so-90’s clothing.
Does anything say 1990’s more than a parachute fabric jacket??
Going through all of our old Barbie stuff at mums this week brought back so many memories. My sister and I would play with them for hours, dressing them up and taking them for drives. But I think the most memorable moment was when my sister and her friend spent an entire evening secretly tying shoelaces to our Barbie’s ankles and then tying the other end to the stair railings before inviting us all up to watch the “bungy jumping Barbies”. As you can see it was quite the show!
And now I have my own Barbie girl. She is slowing building a little collection of Barbies but they look so different to the ones of my generation. Little Miss calls them all her “babies” and loves taking them in the bath and carrying them around at home. It’s such a delight to watch!
Were you a Barbie girl? Are your kids into Barbie?
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