In 1959, Barbie Millicent Roberts made her grand entrance at a New York City Toy Fair sporting a zebra print strapless swimsuit paired with peep-toe slip-on heels. Her fiery red lips were perfectly coordinated with matching nail polish, pale blue eyeshadow and bold, winged eyeliner. With a pulled-back high ponytail, she beautifully showcased her white cat-eye sunglasses and topped off her look with face-framing earrings for a touch of glam. Her debut was a pivotal moment in the history of beauty and fashion—an icon was born. Barbie may, in fact, be the original influencer of the pre-social-media era.
Ruth Handler, the founder of Barbie, created Barbie as a strong, confident, and kind role model after realizing her daughter’s imagination was sparked by engaging with paper dolls. Ruth’s son had access to toys that inspired him to be anything he wanted to be—policeman, tradesman, or doctor—his toys provided a slew of options. So, Ruth set out to inspire young girls and to even the playing field between genders.
“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.”
– Ruth Handler, Barbie Creator
Since 1959, Barbie has inspired girls to be anything: a princess, an astrophysicist, a wildlife conservationist, and even a beekeeper. There isn’t a plastic ceiling Barbie hasn’t broken! She bought her first dreamhouse two years after her debut, and if you’re on the road, you just may spot her cruising in her fully-loaded sports car sporting custom plates. With over 200 careers and counting, Barbie continues to inspire the limitless potential in every girl. Barbie’s friends and family showcase diverse body types, hair textures and ethnicities, ensuring kids of all ages can experience imagination, expression and discovery through play. There are so many wonderful Barbie milestones to honour, we could toast the night away!
As a tribute, we collaborated with some of our biggest brands to bring you all things Barbie, so you too can join in on the fun. Let’s get the party started! Here are some key pieces you’ll want to snag before this celebration’s over:
For the Jewellery Lover:
Heidi Daus created a special Barbie collection just for you! You’ll adore the sparkling creations steeped in glamour and paying homage to Barbie. We think the silhouette on some of the pieces bear a strong resemblance to Heidi when she wears her classic ponytail. What do you think?
For the Beauty Lover:
Barbie’s always primped and primed, and ready for whatever adventure the day may bring! Pur’s beautiful make-up collection may leave you glitterally glowing, while Butter London’s polish will make your nails look fancy and wo-manicured!
For the Fashionista:
Catching some casually cool, cozy vibes? The Barbie tee will be your essential item. Pair it with a vintage Barbie bag and plan a hot chocolate night with Daisy; leave Ken at home to watch his favourite shows!
Gearing up for some Old Hollywood glamour? Then go for gold with a winning brocade number inspired by the 1959 Evening Splendour Barbie!
For the Collector:
Barbie’s 2019 red-and-white striped holiday dress is the talk of the town. Don’t be surprised if it resurfaces as ready-to-wear fashion at one of Barbie’s future birthday parties.
Now it’s time for the lady of the hour to make her grand entrance. She wears a cascading ball gown twinkling with silvery sparkles. Her dramatic ponytail now has an elegant twist, and she still opts for her classic hoop earrings as her jewellery go-to. So elegant, graceful and poised, she’s a beauty. Happy Birthday, Barbie!
Speaking of collectors, did you know our very own Wendy Crystal is a Barbie fan? She’s so excited to share her collection with you, check it out below!
Well, it’s been quite the party! But before we head out, Barbie has a special message to share with you: “