Friday, August 27, 2010

Barbie and other Fashion Dolls

One of the (many) fun parts of being a parent - is the opportunity to revisit your own childhood when you play with your children. My mother recently brought back my childhood Barbies from storage to give to my 3-year old daughter.
Skipper, 80s Barbie, 90s Barbie and a 90s Prince Charming Doll (whom I bought because he was cuter than Ken)
Until recently, I had only let my daughter play with Kelly (Barbie's toddler sister) because I thought that Barbie's figure was too "mature". However, since getting my Barbies - my daughter is more concerned with brushing their hair than worrying about their curves!
My daughter's Kelly dolls (the one on the left is a UK doll made by Simba, the floral and gingham dresses were sewn by me!)
When my daughter is a little older, I plan on getting her a Barbie House - and I thought it would be fun for her to have a variety of fashion dolls living there. For now, I've picked out some re-issued Sindy dolls (from the UK) and a Licca-chan Takara doll (from Japan). Both these dolls were produced for local markets as an alternative to "sophisticated" Barbie. They replicated teen figures and had softer-looking features.
Re-Issued Sindy's next to my childhood Barbie. I love their big heads, side-glancing eyes and rosebud mouths.
Licca-chan doll is still in transit. She resembles my 80s Skipper doll.
By the way - is it just me, or has Barbie gotten less cute over the years? They keep making her eyes wider and more made-up, while her features have gotten a bit harsh - and dare I say - chintastic!
Gifts given to my daughter. Stacie and Kelly are cute - but Barbie looks a little severe.
I know there is a lot of controversy about giving Barbies to children and exposing them to unreal body-shape expectations. But I think it's the parents' responsibility to teach their children what is unreal (dolls, photo-shopped models etc) and give them healthy role-models to emulate. Let them enjoy fashion dolls for their play value - while understanding that they are not an ideal to measure themselves against.

Did you have any Fashion Dolls as a child? Do you collect any now? I'd love to read about them in the comments.

If you want to learn more about Sindy, check out this informative site.

5 comments:

  1. I used to have Barbies and of course other dolls, too but I never took notice of their body-shape. I think people are over thinking things a lot these days!

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  2. I love your old barbies. :) I never thought I would let my boys play with guns but since they turned all their toys into guns anyway, I decided, why fight it, lol! I've just made that they know the difference between make believe and reality; also, we've discussed they are never allowed to touch someone elses gun (even if they believe it is a toy because you never know if it could be real and loaded). Just keep your little ones grounded and it will all turn out good. BTW, my little T (who will be seven in a few weeks) just recently gave up his baby doll and stroller. He made a mighty fine little play daddy. :D

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  3. 3ate4 - people DEFINITELY over think these days - have you read about the anti "pink for girls" movement....it's seriously a waste of time and energy...people should just let kids be kids!

    Lindy May - my natural mothering tendency is to keep my kids bubble-wrapped LOL! But of course I realise that is not healthy - you can't protect them forever - so it is better to teach them the tools they need to live in the real world - rather than living in denial. Bless little T and his little baby doll...my son loves his baby doll, and flies it around in his toy aeroplane (when he's not busy slinging it across his tummy)!

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  4. I agreee.. much less cute. Although i remember killing my barbies as a kid and ripping their heads off. I now have one and she is in perfect condition! I cant wait to have kids so i can re-discover the world of toys!!

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  5. I love your mini-me Barbie...I've seen people buy mini designer accessories for theirs (apparently you can get little birkin bags etc!)...I'd rather spend the money on more bags for me LOL!

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