Happy Birthday Barbie! Homage to an Icon
Before the age of the Instagram model, Barbie was the original influencer, inspiring the masses globally. A muse to Andy Warhol, and a space traveler before man, Barbie has whimsically broken barriers across the board.
62 years ago on March 9th, Barbie was first unveiled to the toy industry in the above iconic black and white stripe swimsuit, making March her birth month. Barbie inspired my below Poshbyv birthday look, as I donned a hot pink feathered two piece, flowing fuchsia duster, and mini crocodile patterned bag to complete theme.
More than just a fashion icon or a mere toy, Barbie is a vehicle for imagination, providing a platform to children everywhere to dream a limitless and vivid future. As a young girl, perpetually in pink (below) Barbie was not only a childhood staple but a symbol of the ability to be whatever you want to be. Journalist, Olympic athlete, and even president are only a few of the roles I and millions of girls across the world were able to envision through our Barbies.
A trendsetter with over 200 careers on her resume, the innovative Barbie brand carries a tradition of putting the doll in spaces where women were still newly emerging, showing girls that the sky's the limit. In 1985, while women were just beginning to break the glass ceiling in business, Barbie took the boardroom as CEO, in a pink and white double breasted suit, matching briefcase, and sharp white and pink polka dot fedora with matching shoes, seen below.
While few women were in the operating room in 1973, Barbie was saving lives as a surgeon in her baby blue hospital haute couture, seen below. A pioneer in science, Barbie has used her influence to encourage girls to explore STEM as everything from a computer engineer to a video game developer.
Always in the perfect outfit for any occasion, Barbie's style, ambition, and ability to transform know no limits. My own take on business Barbie, below, embodies the theme in a cinched waist vest and pant suit, and hot pink Louis Vuitton to top it off both, functionally and visually.
Barbie has re-branded and expanded to represent a diverse spectrum of beauty, more inclusive than the original blonde haired, blue eyed original. The first Black addition to the Barbie collection was Barbie's friend Christy in 1968, followed by the official black Barbie, below, who graced the scene in 1980.
Barbie has not only expanded to include all hues, she represents all body types as of 2016 with the below diverse "Barbies Fashionistas" collection that comes in four body types, seven skin tones, and 22 eye colors. By diversifying the doll's iconic image, Barbie sends the message that girls of all sizes and colors are celebrated.
A pop culture icon, Barbie intercepted airwaves with the 1997 hit "Barbie Girl" by Aqua and has influenced the image and sound of hip hop legends like Nicki Minaj, renown for her Barbie persona. Jeremy Scott's Moschino's 2014 Barbie collection was a major hit, with the Moschino doll selling out in under an hour.
“The thing I love most about Barbie is that she is the ultimate muse, she’s worn every style and design imaginable and at the same time she’s had every possible profession you can dream of,” says Scott on the inspiration behind the collection.
Icons ranging from Amelia Earhart to Diana Ross all have their own dolls, further extending the legacy of great women on to the next generation. While most of us will never have our own Barbie doll made in our likeness, we all embody Barbie energy in our own way. Something as simple as breezing through a regular Miami day in a pink maxi like my Touchdolls dress below generates the feminine fun that Barbie is all about.