Barbie was born on the March 9, 1959, the day she was officially launched at the American International Toy Fair. Created by businesswoman Ruth Handler to show little girls that they could be anything they wanted to be, that ‘a woman has choices’, Barbie quickly became a global icon. Founded by Ruth Handler—businesswoman, mom, and pioneer of her time—Barbie has been breaking boundaries and sparking imaginations since her debut. Both a white and black version of Oreo Fun Barbie was launched, causing outcry in African-American communities who recognized ‘Oreo’ as a derogatory term. Using similar technology to Apple’s Siri, Mattel launched ‘Hello Barbie’ in 2015, a technologically advanced version of Teen Talk Barbie that has the capacity for two-way conversation. RELATED: … In 1975, Barbie won gold at the Winter Olympics in swimming, skating and skiing categories, a remarkable feat, and in 1976, she and Ken were included in the 1976 America’s Time Capsule, cementing her status as a true American icon. But Barbie’s predecessor, the Swiss Bild Lilli doll, had an image that wasn’t quite as clean cut. The most Barbie families were found in the USA in 1880. In her vlogs. The year 2014 was Barbie’s year as she became ‘Entrepreneur Barbie’, backed by ten real-life entrepreneurs including Reshma Saujani, the founder and CEO of Girls Who Code, and Jennifer Hyman and Jenny Fleiss of Rent the Runway. In 1975, Mattel launched a version of Barbie’s little sister named Growing Up Skipper that was supposed to represent the physical change from girl to woman. It all began in a garage in 1945, as a collaboration between Ruth and Elliot Handler, and Harold “Matt” Matson. Barbie’s evolution has been controversial at times, but before we get into her inspirational triumphs and contentious fails, we need to take a look back at her long and fascinating history. Barbie is the figurehead of a brand of Mattel dolls and accessories, including other family members and collectible dolls. The doll was quickly recalled and is now one of the most sought-after Barbie collector’s items. Handler came across the doll while vacationing in Switzerland in 1956 and immediately recognized the potential market for a doll that could be dressed in the latest fashions and imagined fulfilling adult roles and careers. The Barbie Liberation Organization are a group of feminist “culture jammers” committed to … As cultural critic M.G. Lammily’s proportions are based on the measurements of the average 19-year-old American woman and comes with the tagline ‘average is beautiful’. If Barbie were a real woman, her measurements would be 36-18-38. Unlike other dolls of the time made to resemble babies and infants, Bild Lilli was all woman with long legs, fashionable clothes and glamorous make-up. Always in search of the bigger, better deal, Barbie traded up in the early '60s. Did you know that it's a misconception that Barbie is from Malibu? Her full name is Barbara Millicent Roberts. A decade that opened with JFK in the White House and closed with Nixon, the ’60s were a period of major social and political transformation in America. At first, Barbie embraced 70’s style, proclaiming her allegiance to an alternative lifestyle with long flowing skirts, tasseled jackets and long, flowing hair. Barbie was perfectly primed to ride the wave of the new teen culture, brought screaming into American homes with the launch of MTV, and in 1986, Barbie fronted her own band, wearing leggings, a hairpiece and lots of neon. Modeled on a DC comic character, this Barbie wore black patent leather shorts and jacket with fishnet stockings, an outfit that moved a number of Christian groups to protest against what they deemed to be Mattel’s overt sexualization of Barbie. History. She was named after Ruth's daughter Barbara. The BLO. If fashion is a symbol of societal norms and cultures, then Barbie is a three-dimensional mirror into society. Influenced by the movie stars of the 1950s, the first Barbie doll was fully made up with red lips, black eyeliner and perfectly arched eyebrows. Civil rights activist Rosa Parks is being honored with her own Barbie doll. In 1980, the first black barbie was made with Steffie's (Barbie's friend) face mold. It was the era of the ‘yuppie’ – the new young urban professional who lived in the city, worked a high-powered job and put consumption at the forefront of daily life. Suggested site content and search history menu. American businesswoman Ruth Handler is credited with the creation of the doll using a German doll called Bild Lilli as her inspiration. Barbie Collection, Barbie on Tour, Billyboy Collection, Barbie Doll History, Barbie and The Rockers record, Billy Boy Collection siblingsvintage. In 1961, Barbie began going steady with boyfriend Ken, and in 1962, the pair moved into their very own dream house. Barbie was introduced to the world as a teenage fashion model, full name Barbara Millicent Roberts, from the town of Willows in Wisconsin. The girl was made to feel guilty for who she was, for her intelligence and abilities, and also for not being slim and “beautiful.” She apologized to everyone for not being the person they wanted her to be, but all they could see was her body and how it did not match their idea of what a woman should look like. The first Barbie doll goes on display at the American Toy Fair in New York City. The… While Barbie may seem as American as apple pie, she was modeled after a German doll named Lilli. Ruth Handler, co-founder of Mattel, observed her daughter Barbara playing with paper dolls for hours. In the mid-80s, a New York jewelry designer named BillyBoy* was one of the world’s foremost Barbie doll collectors and had worked with Mattel to design two new dolls. According to an early episode of … Another new range of Barbie dolls, launched with the hashtag #thedollevolves, is attempting to debunk Barbie’s image as an unrealistic portrayal of the female form. Unfortunately, the book was called How to Lose Weight and had only one page of advice, ‘Don’t Eat’. The Fashionista range of Barbie dolls offers seven different skin tones, representing African-American, Asian and mixed race features, 14 different hairstyles and, incredibly, with a range of shoe choices. The paper will first give a brief detail about Barbie’s history, appearance, the motive behind its creation, and some facts about Barbie. Malibu Barbie projected an empowered and relaxed persona in a time when many American citizens felt anything but. ‘Day to Night Barbie’, launched in 1985, could have reasonably been described as ‘yuppie’ Barbie and came complete with office accessories and an evening gown so Barbie could go straight from the office to a swanky city party. From shop siblingsvintage. App Store is a service mark of Apple Inc. Google Play is a trademark of Google Inc. Amazon,Kindle, Fire and all related logos are trademarks of Amazon.com, Inc. or its affiliates.Windows and the Windows logo are trademarks of the Microsoft group of companies. She is not meant to reflect a real woman’s body.’. While she may not have visibly aged over the last five decades, Barbie has constantly reinvented herself, changing her clothes to keep up with the latest fashions and adapting her image in response to wider social and cultural change with varying degrees of success. Haneefah Adam too, a master’s graduate from Nigeria, has taken Barbie’s attempts to diversify to another level by introducing the Hijarbie, a doll with the mission of incorporating fashion with faith. Ruth Handler had watched her own daughter play with paper dolls, often giving them adult character roles while most dolls at the time were infants. No stranger to controversy, Barbie has sought to innovate and stay up to date with technological advances with mixed results. Fandom Apps Take your favorite fandoms with you and never miss a beat. Barbie was named after Barbara Handler, the daughter of Ruth handler, who was the creator of the Matell Company (The Matell Company being the creators of Barbie). Barbie’s official … The most significant change to Malibu Barbie’s appearance was the disappearance of Barbie’s coy, sideways glance and the introduction of forward-looking eyes, a development welcomed by feminists. See her journey over the past six decades. How the toys children play with inform their body image is firmly on the children’s health agenda, and the reaction to Mattel’s attempt to better represent the bodies of real women has largely been met with praise in the mainstream press and on social media. To allow us to provide a better and more tailored experience please click "OK". ... Barbie is born. Off the back of these technological teething problems, Mattel moved its concern away from the internet and back towards Barbie herself, launching two new lines representing different ethnicities and body shapes. The first Barbie doll was introduced by Mattel in 1959. In 1840 there was 1 Barbie family living in Alabama. In the year 2000, the launch of ‘Jewel Girl Barbie’ saw Barbie looking younger and more fashionable than ever before, and in 2004, Barbie jumped on the celebrity bandwagon of the very public breakup, officially ending her relationship with Ken mere weeks after Britney and Justin ended ties. Newly single and now 50 years old, Barbie went for a major image change in 2008 when ‘Black Canary Barbie’ hit toy stores. By rotating Growing Up Skipper’s arm, children could watch her torso lengthen and her breasts protrude, thus, increasing her bra size. Before Barbie became everyone’s BFF there were no teen or grown-up looking dolls in America, only dolls that looked like children. Barbie's New Dream House. Becky’s long hair also had a habit of getting caught up in the wheels of her wheelchair. The history of modern toy industry changed forever when Ruth Handler, wife of a co-founder of the Mattel toy company, came to an idea in 1956 to stop the trend of the infant-like toys that were popular in the 1st half of the 1900s in the United States. If you hadn't spied it yet, Barbie's signature color is pink. You can see how Barbie families moved over time by selecting different census years. Review our. D&D Beyond Unfortunately, Teen Talk Barbie’s 270 programmable phrases included such enlightened statements as ‘I love shopping!’ and ‘Math class is tough!’ Public criticism from the American Association of University Women convinced Mattel to remove the offending phrases from Teen Talk Barbie’s repertoire. But alternative ‘Live Action Barbie’ only lasted a year before being replaced. Barbie, in full Barbara Millicent Roberts, an 11-inch- (29-cm-) tall plastic doll with the figure of an adult woman that was introduced on March 9, 1959, by Mattel, Inc., a southern California toy company. When Andy Warhol, BillyBoy’s friend, begged to paint his portrait, he responded that Warhol should paint Barbie instead because ‘Barbie, c’est moi.’. Mattel, Inc is the American company which manufactures this fashion doll. Mattel responded to these concerns swiftly, but the publicity surrounding Hello Barbie’s security issues damaged the doll’s popularity. This sparked Ruth's vision to create a 3-D doll for girls to play out their dreams. However, an internet security firm expressed concern over the potential for Hello Barbie’s servers to be hacked, meaning hackers could take over the home’s wifi network and access other devices as well as potentially eavesdropping through Barbie’s microphone. (I love this little fun fact since I also grew up in Wisconsin!) Ruth Handler, who cofounded Mattel with her husband, Elliot, spearheaded the introduction of the doll. #1 Ponytail Barbie, as she was known, sold for $3 (the equivalent of $24.55 in 2016), and in the first year of production, over 300,000 Barbie dolls were sold. Barbie is a fashion doll manufactured by the American toy company Mattel, Inc. and launched in March 1959. Born in Germany in 1952, the inspiration for America’s most famous doll was a saucy high-end call girl named Lilli. Sarah Allen, Mattel UK’s representative responded stating, ‘Barbie is a doll. Our History. Barbie is still under fire for her unrealistic proportions though, with the BBC publishing an article that shows that even the new curvy Barbie would have a waist equivalent to a UK size 6-8 if she were scaled up to full size. ‘Slumber Party Barbie’ wore pink silk pajamas with a matching robe and came prepared for her sleepover with toiletries, a mirror, the same diet book and a set of scales permanently set at 110 pounds. In 1997, Mattel launched the misconceived ‘Oreo Fun Barbie’. The first Barbie dolls were manufactured in Japan and their clothes were hand-stitched by Japanese … America prospered in the 90s – the economy grew, the Soviet Empire collapsed and the digital age was born – yet the 90s could reasonably be described as Barbie’s most contentious decade. the first was Christie, Barbie's friend. In the same year, Barbie landed the cover of Sports Illustrated swimsuit edition, wearing a version of her original zebra swimsuit and featuring the tagline ‘the doll who started it all’. Barbie was designed by Ruth Handler, inspired by Bild Lilli - a German doll. Barbie was "born" the day Mattel president and Barbie inventor Ruth Handler debuted the doll at the American International Toy Fair in New York. but wasn't the first. The Barbie family name was found in the USA, Canada, and Scotland between 1840 and 1920. The precursor to the Barbie doll was not meant for children. In the mid-70s, Mattel suffered some severe internal difficulties and almost went bankrupt in 1974, perhaps offering an explanation for the error of judgement that must have occurred for ‘Growing Up Skipper’ to ever make it into toy stores. An Instagram account created in December 2015 featuring a doll wearing the Islamic veil attracted tens of thousands of followers in a matter of months. With a new home and a new man, Barbie also found herself inundated with new friends and family, including lifelong best friend Midge and little sister Skipper. Her birthday is March 9, 1959. Wearing a long pink-striped skirt with ‘babysitter’ emblazoned along the hem and thick-framed glasses, Barbie Baby-Sits came with a number of accessories, including a baby in a crib, a telephone, a few bottles of soda and a book. Both Francie and Christie, who followed just a year later, were manufactured with dark skin, but designers used the same mold as that it used for ‘Caucasian Barbie’, meaning all of the dolls had the exact same facial features. Taking a look back at Barbie history, fun facts, and interesting moments in her history has a lot of lessons to offer our kids. This was a change from the original Dream House in several ways—not only was it significantly bigger, but one could set up the house itself in different ways, not just the furniture inside. For over half a decade, Barbie has negotiated the fickle world of fashion, staying in the best-seller section of the toy store as other toys have come and gone. Barbie Vlogger is an ongoing web-exclusive series where Barbie chats directly with her audiences about everything that is going on in her life. She wore a strapless zebra striped swimsuit and came with either blonde or brunette hair done up in a cute Audrey Hepburn ponytail. It was created by Ruth Handler in the year 1959. A new version of ‘Share a Smile Becky’ was launched with shorter hair, but despite her initial success, she was soon discontinued. Share Share Tweet Email Comment. Founded by Ruth Handler—businesswoman, mom, and pioneer of her time—Barbie has been breaking boundaries and sparking imaginations since her debut. During this period, more women entered the workforce than ever before, the result of both a liberal economic policy that rewarded those who worked and decades of fighting for equal rights. The credit of the Barbie doll inventor is taken by Ruth Handler. According to brand lore, Barbie was officially born on … One year later, Barbie got her first tattoo with the launch of ‘Totally Stylin’ Tattoos Barbie’, which featured a lower back tattoo spelling out K-E-N. In the 1980s, American politics experienced a dramatic swing to the right under the presidency of Ronald Reagan. Unfortunately, Share a Smile Becky endured some of the same accessibility issues people in wheelchairs face in everyday life – Becky’s wheelchair could not navigate Barbie’s Dream House, did not fit into the elevator and could not be put inside any of Barbie’s vehicles. ‘Totally Hair Barbie’ with hair twice as long as her dress, ‘Gymnast Barbie’, ‘Mermaid Barbie’ and, who can forget, ‘Generation Girl Barbie’ were all incredibly popular. Hello Barbie has a microphone and a modicum of artificial intelligence that means the more she is spoken to, the more appropriate her responses are. There is … In July 1992, Mattel released a Barbie doll that could finally talk back to the millions of young girls who had talked to her for the last four decades. Known as the ‘Year of Women’ in American politics, 1992 saw Barbie head her first presidential campaign with the launch of ‘Barbie for President’. Original Barbie - Story Behind the Original Barbie Doll. Barbie was no longer restricted to the role of housewife or eternal surfer girl, as the 80s saw the introduction of ‘Dr. Soon after the Oreo debacle, Mattel found themselves under fire again following the release of ‘Share a Smile Becky’, a doll who used a pink wheelchair. Barbie’s first major controversy came in 1963 with the introduction of ‘Barbie Baby-Sits’. … Barbie is named after the creators' daughter. The Barbie Doll was invented by Ruth Handler in the 1950s and it debuted in New York in 1959, becoming one of the most popular dolls for little girls and eventually adult collectors as well. 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