Saturday, March 14, 2009


From fashion plate to celebrity stand in, to multiple career professionalism to being a big sister for another doll, Barbie has just about literally done it all.
This week, the Mattel Toy Company celebrates the 50th anniversary of the Barbie doll.
Ruth Handler oversaw creation of the doll with toy engineer Jack Ryan after realizing that her daughter often gave her dolls more adult roles to play, despite being designed for younger activities.
But it took a while to convince the then powers that be at Mattel that Barbie would be commercially viable, so she did not make her debut until March 9th, 1959 at the American International Toy Fair.
Her debut date is also considered her birth date (although an official age has never been set for the doll within any of her various incarnations) and is used to mark her anniversary each year.
The original production run once sold for roughly three dollars each, but finding one today in still relatively decent shape for under four figures is considered somewhat miraculous by fans.
Barbie has stood in for a wide range of celebrities from Lucille Ball to Diana Ross, posed as everybody from Lieutenant Uhura of the original Star Trek to Wonder Woman, the only things she needs are a child's imagination and whatever accessories the parents can afford to buy.

For more on Barbie, you can go to Mattel's official website at or the Barbie collectors' website at
And for more Barbie fun, she is the theme of this week's Puzzle Corner too.

No comments: