From The Creator Ruth Handler : “My whole philosophy of Barbie was that through the doll, the little girl could be anything she wanted to be. Barbie always represented the fact that a woman has choices.” An American woman named Ruth Handler spied a Lilli doll in a store while vacationing in Switzerland, she didn't see it as a prurient novelty. Instead, she thought it would be the perfect toy for her daughter, Barbara. Handler had observed Barbara and her girlfriends playing with paper dolls that depicted teenage girls or adult women. To Handler, that was their way of practicing for adulthood. Yet, aside from the two-dimensional paper dolls, no other dolls available in stores portrayed the mature female body. For that reason, she bought two Lilli dolls for Barbara during that Switzerland trip in 1956 -- and one for herself.
The Barbie doll was invented in 1959 by Ruth Handler (co-founder of Mattel), whose own daughter was called Barbara. Barbie was introduced to the world at the American Toy Fair in New York City. Barbie's job was teenage fashion doll. The Ken doll was named after Ruth's son and was introduced two years after Barbie in 1961.
The first Barbie was sold for $3. Additional clothing based on the latest runway trends from Paris were sold, costing from $1 to $5
- Barbie’s real name is Barbara Millicent Roberts
- Barbie is from (fictional) Willows, Wisconsin and went to Willows High School
- The best selling Barbie doll ever was Totally Hair Barbie, with hair from the top of her head to her toes.
- Ruth Handler, co-founder of Mattel, brought her vision of a three-dimensional doll to life with the introduction of Barbie in 1959
- .Barbie doll is currently a $1.5 billion dollar-per-year industry.
- Barbie first appeared in the now-famous black-and-white striped swimsuit and signature ponytail
- Barbie has three sisters Skipper, Stacie, Chelsea
- Barbie’s first pet was a horse named Dancer; since then, she has had more than 50 other pets!
- The first Barbie doll sold for $3.00
- Barbie’s signature color is Barbie Pink (PMS 219)
- Barbie’s first boyfriend, Ken, debuted two years after Barbie in 1961
- The first black and Hispanic Barbie dolls were introduced in 1980.
- Ken was named after the son of Mattel founders Ruth and Elliot Handler
- Ken and Barbie broke up on Valentine’s Day in 2004 after being together more than 43 years
- Ken and Barbie rekindled their romance announcing their reunion after seven years of being apart on Valentine’s Day 2011
- Every second, two Barbie dolls are sold somewhere in the world.
- The best-selling Barbie doll ever was 1992 Totally Hair Barbie, with hair from the top of her head to her toes
- Barbie has collaborated with more than 75 different fashion designers and has served as creative inspiration to more than 150 famous designers
- Barbie has had close to 150 inspirational careers
- Barbie doll represented a candidate for President in 1992 and is running again in 2000 with a platform of opportunities for girls, educational excellence and animal rights.
- The military series of Barbie dolls, Army, Air Force, Navy and Marine Corps went through approvals by the Pentagon to ensure the most realistic costumes
- Barbie Goes to College was introduced in 1964.
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