Barbie is an american adult-bodied doll created by Ruth Handler. She was inspired by a German doll during a trip to Europe in 1956.
The way to the first doll was easy as she involved her husband Elliot who was a co-founder of Mattel, a toy company.
The name Barbie was chosen after Ruth’s daughter, Barbara.
Barbie was created by Ruth Handler and has been manufactured by Mattle, inc. since 1959. Handler noticed that children often give their dolls an adult role or identity, and realized that there was an opportunity to introduce a new kind of product to the market. She found adult dolls in Germany and brought some home to show her husband, who co-founded Mattle, inc. She then re-designed the doll and gave her the name “Barbie”,
Barbie’s debut was at the American International Toy Fair in New York on March 9th, 1959- a date that became Barbie’s official birthday. Initially marketed as a teen-age fashion model, Barbie was manufactured in Japan and her outfits were hand made by Japanese home workers. Barbie became a huge success, selling approximately 350,000 dolls in it’s first year.
Barbie products include a wide range of dolls with a vast collection of clothing, accessories and houses along with branded goods such as books, video games, coloring pages etc. Barbie’s 50th birthday was celebrated with a runway show in New York for the Mercedes-Benz fashion week showcasing contributions from 50 well know haute couturier designers, such as Vera Wang, Calvin Clain and Bob Mackie.
There are more than 100,00 barbie collectors, almost half of them spending more than $1000 yearly. The most expensive Barbie ever sold was auctioned for 9000 pounds in 2006- it was a Barbie in midnight red from 1965.
Search for Barbie dolls in Many Dolls.