Tuesday, March 6, 2012

We are all Barbies

Multiple Disclaimers: *Before you all start getting up in arms at the idea that we are all Barbies, please give me the chance to explain myself and *this is going to get all mushy gushy on you aka Girl Power. I will start from the beginning, where this post idea first came from. I was in Toys R Us the other day, getting a shower gift for a friend. Because I had some time to meander about, I happened upon the aisle where the Barbie dolls spend their time. Guh, have you guys checked the selection these days? I don't ever remember there being SO.MANY.DOLLS. Barbie has done a great job of providing a doll for every race, profession, interest or childhood dream, but this selection also inspired me further than everyone of us being represented racially. We are being represented as women and our best, funnest characteristics.

Photo © Mattel 
We, as women, have a lot to be proud of as we have come a long way in the past few decades. Yada yada yada, long story short, we are awesome. In dissecting the representation of women through Barbie dolls, I found some encouraging viewpoints from me and myself on how different sides of women are being shown. I was refreshed. Anyone who has issues with modern Barbie dolls and their affect on girls of an impressionable age, really just don't have any imagination.

Photo © Mattel
Barbies show: Women are smart. I could rattle off all the women that are currently holding office, run companies, are entrepreneurs and all those pretty awesome things that smart people do. We are smart and saavy in every aspect of our lives, from our careers to our home life. At the risk of sounding a tad too feminist, I have to share a quote from Gloria Steinem :

 "Some of us are becoming the men we wanted to marry."  

While I don't want to say that we all have to be career women to be smart, I am saying that we have more power than ever to decide what is the right path for us. We take charge. We can be smart but domesticated, have a career but be crafty, stay at home but be intellectual. The sky is the limit for us and the decisions we make are ours.

(From Architect Barbie to Reporter Barbie and on to Computer Engineer Barbie, these ladies are being represented as girls with a career and more importantly, a brain in her head!)

Photo © Mattel
Barbies show: Women are encouraging. Women can be batsh!t crazy, this I know but we can also be the most encouraging and supportive people on this planet! When your best friend has a bad break up, aren't we the ones not deterred by her tears, telling her that this is the best thing that could happen to her (whether or not we believe what we are saying)? We will tell you look gorgeous the second we lay eyes on you and will mean it (most times). Women are cheerleaders in the truest sense of the word. 

 "A woman's whole life is a history of the affections." -Washington Irving

(Barbies come in manner of actual cheerleaders, fans as seen here and role models. Barbie and Skipper? I am sure Barbie had some encouraging words for Skipper when she found out she could only wear flats)

Photo © Mattel
Barbies show: Women are entertaining. Women can-can entertain the masses (Hello, Bridesmaids) and also entertain each other... I know I am always trying to make the girls at work laugh and text my sisters funny little quips a lot of the times. I surround myself with women who are just like this. Life is one hell of an entertaining ride, and women are sometimes not given enough credit. Take a look at my Twitter feed on a normal day and you'll change your tune about the humor we exude just talking about every day stuff.

“Women are nothing but machines for producing children.” -Napolean Bonaparte

(Barbie brings us can-can girls, princesses, mermaids, fairies, rock stars and so much more. See? Even little dollies can portray us at our funnest)

Photo © Mattel

Barbies show: Women are adventurous. From extreme sports to bearing children, we sure know how to throw ourselves at adventure, don't we? Even the smallest adventures (like changing plans last minute and getting drinks with friends instead of grocery shopping) are what make us pretty friggin' awesome human beings.

"So celebrate what you've accomplished, but raise the bar a little higher each time you succeed" - Mia Hamm

(Snowboarder Barbie? Harley Davidson Barbie? Flamenco Dancer Barbie? Figure Skating Barbie? Princess of the Vikings Barbie? Yep.)

Photo © Matte

Barbies show: Women are caring. If you needed to be told this, then well, you have a pretty low opinion of women... but I think we all know that women are nurturers, for animal and babies alike... sometimes we even care about younger women, therein being... what's the word, hmmmm... oh, a ROLE MODEL.

"We won't always know whose lives we touched and made better for our having cared, because actions can sometimes have unforeseen ramifications. What's important is that you do care and you act." - Charlotte Lunsford

(See relationship between Barbie and Skipper and then whatever the littlest one's name is.)

Photo © Mattel
Barbies show and will always show: Women are fabulous. It's a statement, a fact, women are fabulous creatures who care for children, who wear interesting and wonderful clothes, who make eachother laugh, who love adventure and create opportunities for themselves. We women make our dreams, big and small, a reality and I see it my daily life every day.

"You can't just sit there and wait for people to give you that golden dream; you've got to get out there and make it happen for yourself." - Diana Ross


  1. Best POST EVER. Seriously. I am oozing all kinds of smiles and happiness....love this outlook. (and love Barbies, too.) xo

  2. This is the best post of the year! They are just fabulous! Thank you so much for sharing.

  3. Ah this is sooo cute!!:) xoxo


  4. Love love love this!!! Women are incredible creatures. 

  5. Who knew Barbie was representing so well!  Love the post.

  6. Fantastic post!  Well done!

  7. It's absolutely amazing at how racially diverse Barbie has gotten over the years. Now if only she would be physically diverse too. :'(

  8. Fab post Amanda. I loved reading this. You make me smile! <3

  9. I agree that Barbie has done a great job expanding their variety and given them jobs. However, some of the jobs are not so female empowering... Malibu Barbie. And while they have diversified Barbie, if you look at the pic above... they're all the same proportions (the same unrealistic/unhealthy body proportions) so I'm not so sure how much I buy that they represent all kinds of women when they're same figure just different hair color.

  10.  I totally see what you are saying but at the end of the day, they are dolls. Until society starts recognizing all size women (and accepting them), how can we expect a doll manufacturer to change their mold (literally). This post was just to have fun.

  11. This post is so amzing. I am going to share it with some girlfriends. I just know they will love it too. Thank you for writing this.

  12. Gorgeous dolls...

  13. Inspired! You're so right!



  14. THIS POST IS AMAZING...I have always held a deep love for Barbie, in all of her various careers!


  15. Great post!!! Be sure to check out my older post -

    reportage from DOLLS LAND gallery full of collector´s gems

     you will love it!
    I got your message on IFB and I really am flattered and happy you love my blog!! :)
    I followed you back on IFB as well as via GFC, and now I will not miss any of your new posts :)

    Feel free to leave me a comment on my blog.

    just JE NE SAIS

    Fashion Bloggers


  16. what a lovely post.. Yes Barbie is amazing. I am half Middle Eastern and they made an Arabian Barbie called Fulla.. she is covered up and I disagree with it because a toy shouldn't be a tool to train kids on what to wear and what not to wear. I never looked at my doll and thought.. hmmm.. she's dressed a bit skanky. Children are so innocent, they just want to play. Why rob them of fun outfits and control their imagination. Sad how some people in my region think that buying a Barbie doll is a big deal because of her outfit/ hair showing. It is just a doll after all.

  17. Fantastic post every quote are inspiring. I love this post.


Gimme Gimme Some Lovin'