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Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Kwanzaa Barbie


In 2006, Mattel produced Kwanzaa Barbie in recognition of the seven-day celebration developed to strengthen African-American values of family, community and culture. There's also an aspect of Kwanzaa that discourages commercialism and encourages educational gifts for children.

Initially, when I saw the Kwanzaa Barbie advertised, I was disappointed in the commercialization of the celebration. The doll was included in their Dolls of the World - Festivals of the World Collection so I understood their perspective.

I was also disappointed that the doll, although dressed in African-inspired attire, had way beyond shoulder-length wavy hair and gray eyes. I'm sure there's a black woman somewhere in the world that looks like that but for the most part, the doll reinforces a negative self-image in little black girls. She's a beautiful doll but the same hair with a shoulder-length cut and brown eyes would have been much better. This doll is no longer in production but is likely available on the secondary market.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Thank You and Personalized Slide Show from Fashion Royalty Girl

I was completely floored to receive the personalized slide show created by Deb AKA Fashion Royalty Girl. Is that awesome or what? I love this so much that I've already placed it on my sidebar. Yeah, I know that's redundant any maybe a little tacky but I don't care. Miss Deb is all that and a bag of chips.









I just love the ladies and gents in the slide show. It's Deb's attention to details that set her work apart from other photographers.



Thanks, Deb; you have really made my day. Happy collecting!

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Meet a Doll Collector: Deb AKA Fashion Royalty Girl


If you love doll fashion, you must check out the photography of one of my MySpace buddies, Deb AKA Fashion Royalty Girl. Not only is she a doll collector, she’s also a doll photographer and doll artist. Many of her fabulous doll scenes have graced my page on MySpace and I look forward to displays of her creativity. You can see some of Deb’s work in the slide show at the bottom of this page.


Be sure to go to her page and check out her work. While she’s more into Fashion Royalty dolls, some of the dolls in her photos are redressed in Barbie fashions. The fashions, hair and accessories are perfect for the message she conveys with each photo.



I hope you enjoy getting to know this doll collector. Stay tuned for features of other doll enthusiasts. Feel free to let me know if you’d like to be in the doll collector spotlight. Don’t be shy. Until the next time…..


Smooches!

Sunday, November 09, 2008

Post-Election Comeback


Hey, everyone. I'm over the craziness and exhaustion of the 2008 General Election. Yes, my candidate, Barack Obama is now the President-Elect and many are pleased throughout the world.

If you're not an Obama supporter, that's cool too. The people in the United States spoke and Barack Obama again out-campaigned a more seasoned competitor. Barbie fans still don't have a President Barbie and that's OK, too.
Barbie in 2012!

I do hope you will become or remain engaged in the political process wherever you are. Now...back to Barbie collecting for Barbie fans!

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Sneak Peek: Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater Barbie

I've posted previouslyabout the upcoming release of the Barbie doll in honor of the 5oth anniversary of the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater. As you can see, she's pivotal, not a surprise but where's the umbrella?

Her eyelashes appear to be rooted and her hair is in a natural hairstyle.

This doll is scheduled for a December 2008 release. I am looking forward to adding her to my collection.

Stay tuned for more sneak peeks.


Friday, August 15, 2008

AKA Barbie Online!

For everyone who's asked, you can purchase the AKA Centennial Barbie at BarbieCollector.com. She sells for $49.95 and there is a 5 doll per order limit. :(

Monday, August 11, 2008

Official Response on the AKA Barbie



I've received a few questions about the AKA Barbie: where she can be purchased, when she'll be available and how much she costs. I've only been able to share what I've learned through Sorority communiqu├ęs and information shared on the Barbie Bulletin Board.


One of my sisters actually got an official response from Barbie Collector and here it is:








Subject: FYI: [Fwd: Re: Barbie Collector
by Mail Order]

I got tired of all the speculations; so I contacted them
myself.


From: Barbie Collector Customer
Service
<customerservice@barbiecollector.com>
Date:
2008/08/07 Thu PM 08:57:08 CDT
Subject: Re: Barbie Collector by Mail
Order

Dear Barbie Collector Customer,

Thank you for asking about
the Alpha Kappa Alpha Barbie doll. The AKA Centennial Barbie doll, which honors
Alpha Kappa Alpha, the first sorority established by black women, was unveiled
to sorority members during their Centennial event held July 11-18, 2008, in
Washington, D.C.



Ordering information and official
pictures of the doll will be available beginning August 15, 2008, on
barbiecollector.com.

Please continue to check our website for further
information on this exciting new doll. Thank you for your
patience.

Sincerely,

Barbie(R) Collector Customer
Service
Phone: 1-800-491-7514
Hours: Monday - Sunday 7 a.m. - 10 p.m.
Central Time
E-mail address:
customerservice@barbiecollector.com


Original Message
Follows:
------------------------

Barbie Collector by Mail Order



Customer Email address:

When is
the Alpha Kappa Alpha Barbie going to be on your website?









Friday, August 08, 2008

Barbie Fan Club Chat

I participated in my first BFC (Barbie Fan Club) chat last night. The guests were designers Robert Best, Sharon Zuckerman, Bill Greening and Linda Kyaw.


The conversation was fast-paced and covered a number of topics. I was excited about plans for a new black Silkstone doll in 2009 and a reproduction of the Julia doll.

Mattel is going to force me to eat peanut butter to save for all of the dolls I want. Ha! I actually had my Barbie addiction under control at one point. Now, I think I may need to try a 12-step program.

Coincidentally, I was speaking with a young lady in my office today. She had no idea about the groundbreaking Julia television series and proceeded to remind me that she was born in 1989. Aarrgh!


Anyhoo, here's a photo of the Julia doll and a link to more information about the television series starring the legendary Diahann Carroll.






I'm looking forward to purchasing the Julia reproduction doll and the new Silkstone.




Wednesday, August 06, 2008

My AKA Barbie Arrived!


My Alpha Kappa Alpha Centennial Barbie arrived in the mail and she is gorgeous! I love her and can hardly wait until my second doll arrives so I can redress one of my other Barbies in the fabulous dress and those lovely shoes.

Actually, I probably need to wait until I get a doll for my mom who is also a sorority member and several nieces and god-daughters who I expect to pledge as soon as they get the opportunity.

As I reassess my Barbie needs, I think I'll need at least 10 more AKA Barbie dolls. Wow, I guess I'll have to change my spending habits to fit those purchases in my personal budget. I don't care; those dolls are worth it.

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Juror's racial slur delays battle of toy giants


David Colke July 28, 2008

ONE OF THE jurors in the Barbie v Bratz trial, in which the toy giant Mattel has scored a big victory over its rival MGA Entertainment, was removed on Friday for making an ethnic slur about Isaac Larian, the chief executive of MGA, who was born in Iran.


The remark came during jury deliberations in the first phase of the trial, which ended on July 18. The jury found that MGA, and specifically Mr Larian, had helped the creator of Bratz, Carter Bryant, who at the time was working as a Mattel designer on the toy giant's Barbie line, breach his contract.


The trial is in the damages phase, during which Mattel is expected to ask for more than $US1billion ($1.04 billion). [More]

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Unique Barbie doll re-roots

Some readers have asked about the Barbie dolls with dreadlocks. Those are dolls whose hair has been re-rooted. The fabulous doll artist is a woman named Loanne Hizo Ostlie of Tabloach Productions. Check out her site to see more of her work. Her creations are also available on eBay.

Here's a small sample of a few of my favorite creations by her.

Randall Craig Pooch Accessory

Randall Craig will soon offer two versions of an adorable poodle accessory Barbie-sized fashion dolls. These pooches are way better than the plastic dogs sold with many fashion dolls.



Note to Mattel: This is the type of dog that should have accompanied the Kimora Lee Simmons doll. The pooch can be purchased soon at My Favourite Doll.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

AKA Barbie sells fast at sorority convention

Well, I will have to wait to get the Alpha Kappa Alpha Barbie. The small number of dolls on hand went very quickly at the price of $49.95 each. A portion of the sales of the doll will go the organization to continue its legacy of wonderful international programming and service.


If you're not familiar with Alpha Kappa Alpha, do check the website at http://www.aka1908.org/.


A little trivia, Michelle Obama has accepted honorary membership in Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority. When her husband, the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee, becomes President of the United States, she will become the second Alpha Kappa Alpha woman to represent this country as First Lady. Eleanor Roosevelt is the first AKA to serve as First Lady.



Monday, July 14, 2008

Don't Just Play Barbie, Be Barbie syndicated at ToyCollector.com



I am still meeting very cool people through Barbie collecting and this blog. I am honored that this blog is now being syndicated over at ToyCollector.com. Check out the site and let me know what you think; it's a site for all toy collectors.

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Alpha Kappa Alpha Centennial Barbie Doll Unveiled on The Early Show


I am so excited to post this photo of the Alpha Kappa Alpha Centennial Barbie doll. I tuned into The Early Show this morning to watch my sorority sisters spread the word about AKA and share the history of international gathering in Washington, DC.

I did not expect my sorority's spokesperson to unveil the AKA Barbie doll on television; what a bonus! I can't explain how it felt to see our organization's shield and beautiful colors --- salmon pink and apple green on a Barbie.

The doll looked like the one pictured above except I think the hair was a tad lighter. There were several boxes on the display table and one out of the box. You know I wanted to jump through the screen to get one.

Anyhoo, one of my sisters (Thanks, Soror Shawna) will get one for me and you know I will order more. This was a smart move on Mattel's behalf because they will make a mint from the sorority members, family and friends who will purchase the doll as gifts and others who just love the doll.

For any of my family, friends and kind strangers that may read this; I can never have too many of this doll.

It goes without saying that I will write about the doll when I actually receive her. She'll be availalble at BarbieCollector.com in mid-August.

Until next time, Smooches...

Sunday, June 01, 2008

Fashion Icon Yves Saint Laurent Passes

News reports today that Yves Saint Laurent passed away today. He was 71. No other details were released as of this post. Stay tuned.



Official website: www.ysl.com

Sunday, May 25, 2008

The Barbie-Bratz War Goes to Court



Carter Bryant, designer and former employee of Mattel, is at the heart of the Barbie-Bratz lawsuit you may have heard about in recent weeks. In dispute is whether he was a Mattel employee when he came up with the Bratz concept and shopped it to MGA Entertainment, Inc. If that is the case, Mattel would claim ownership of Bratz and the gazillion dollars they rake in.


Lo and behold, Mattel has dropped its lawsuit against Bryant but will continue litigation against MGA. So this mess isn’t cleaned up yet. Stay tuned.


Friday, May 02, 2008

Mattel Commemorates 50th Anniversary of Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater with Barbie Doll



This Fall, Mattel is slated to release a Barbie doll to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater. The doll will be designed by artistic director Judith Jamison and is said to be based on the classic Ailey performance piece, 'Revelations'.


Modern dance enthusiasts will assure fabulous sales of this doll. I can already picture a doll based on the same mold as Princess of South Africa Barbie in that awesome white dress with the umbrella. I'm getting excited just thinking about it.


Principal dancer Renee Robinson is an awesome and performances the piece with brilliance but Judith Jamison will always be THE dancer that represents Alvin Ailey and his dreams. The Company used to perform in South Florida every year but I haven't seen them in ages.


Congratulations on 50 years of Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater and here's to many more!

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Judge paves way for Mattel to sue Bratz inventor

Mon Apr 28, 2008 6:32pm EDT

NEW YORK (Reuters) - A federal judge in California has cleared the way for Barbie doll maker Mattel Inc (MAT.N: Quote, Profile, Research) to go forward with its lawsuit against ex-employee and Bratz dolls inventor Carter Bryant.

Mattel, the world's largest toy maker, had claimed it owns MGA Entertainment's Bratz dolls because Bryant conceived the big-headed, pouty-lipped toys while he worked as a Barbie designer.

In a ruling issued on Friday, U.S. District Judge Stephen Larson said "the undisputed facts establish that Bryant breached his fiduciary duty to communicate his inventions to Mattel when, rather than doing so, he secretly entered into a contract with Mattel's competitor, while still employed by Mattel."

Sales of Barbie dolls have waned in recent years amid fierce competition from Bratz dolls, which burst onto the market in 2001. Mattel said this month the Bratz litigation was a factor in its $46.6 million first-quarter loss.

"The facts are on our side and we are confident we will prevail at trial," MGA Chief Executive Isaac Larian said in a statement. " MGA ... built Bratz -- and no one else."

(Reporting by Justin Grant, with additional reporting by Lisa Baertlein in Los Angeles; editing by Carol Bishopric and Braden Reddall)

Saturday, April 05, 2008

For the Ultimate Doll Collector: NiniMomo Creations

If you've not had the pleasure, you absolutely must check out NiniMomo.com. I was amazed the first time I saw the site a few years ago. It is mainly a site for doll pageants. Yes, doll pageants. Just like Miss Universe has delegates representing various countries, this company customizes fashion dolls to represent different countries or states. But my words don't do it justice, see for yourself.



When you know what the original doll looks like and compare it to their customized version, the transformation is mind-blowing. The hair, face painting and detailed workmanship on the gowns really make the dolls worth the price.



I'd love to add one of their dolls to my collection but by the ones I want are always sold by the time I get to the site. L Anyhoo, here is my latest favorite, Miss South Africa, and yes it's already sold.



Imagine the thrill of owning such a gorgeous a doll that is truly one-of-a-kind.


Meet the artists that make up NiniMomo Creations









Undergoing MyBlogLog Verification

Saturday, March 29, 2008

I am guilty. My Barbie-sensitivity is showing.

Ashley Miller and Heather Johnson of Atlanta, GA were recently sentenced for bank robbery. The two, with inside help from a bank teller, got away with $11,000 and went on a shopping spree.

Feel free to google 'Barbie bandits' to get the gory details, if you so choose. On the other hand, I am so ticked that Barbie's name has been associated with these two young women.

They're both blonde and attractive but they're also stupid. Barbie is not stupid.

OK, that was my rant for the day. Thanks.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Kimora Lee Simmons Barbie Arrived Today!


Today was fabulous!!! My Kimora Lee Simmons Barbie finally arrived and, well, all the stress I've been dealing with at the office just went out the window. I must say she is fabulosity personified. I spent much of the afternoon showing her off to people in the office --- even complete strangers --- that probably think I'm certifiably crazy. Kimora was a Christmas gift from my boss and I'm just so appreciative that I could cry. My boss is so…there's no better word…fabulous.


Let me just say that the doll looks much better in person than she does in the Barbie Collector catalog. Quite frankly, I thought the photo made her look a tad hoochiefied.


Anyhoo, the floor-length faux fur chinchilla coat is to die for and the signature 'Kimora Lee Simmons' leopard print lining was not lost on me. I really wasn't feeling the thigh-high boots when I'd seen them in photos but the gold heels on the boots are just too fabulous with the fishnet hose. The gold 'KLS' appointments on the handbag and chiffon top are so Kimora. Let me not forget that she's wearing my favorite color --- pink!


I was a bit surprised that so many people at my job didn't know who she is; but they do now.


If there was one thing I'd change about her, it would be the sunglasses. They are positioned fabulously on the top of her head but there's not enough contrast between the color of her hair and the color of her sunglasses so they get lost until examining the doll closely.


If you like pink and fashion, you must add Kimora Lee Simmons Barbie to your collection. Now, it would be too fab of Mattel to make dolls in the likeness of her daughters Ming and Aoki. Think about it. It's fabulous!





Tuesday, March 18, 2008

How many different Barbies have been made?


Let's think about this. Barbie has been around since 1959. Since then she has changed in hair color and ethnicity. She's been pregnant, a paraplegic, several celebrities and almost every occupation known to mankind. She's even been president.

So what's your guess? 500? 750? 1,000? I'll save you the trouble ---I still don't know. According to doll enthusiast, Mary Wernke, there were 2,386 made between Barbie's beginning in 1959 through 1999. That's a lot of dolls and 9 years are remaining to make Wernke's list current. I must keep that in mind when my familly complains about the number of dolls I've collected.

Check Mary's site for her exhaustive lists! Happy collecting!

Sunday, March 09, 2008

Happy Birthday! Barbie is 49 and she looks fabulous!






This Day in History



March 9, 1959



Ruth Mosko Handler Unveils Barbie Doll



At the International American Toy Fair in New York on March 9, 1959, inventor Ruth Mosko Handler unveiled one of the most loved, emulated, and criticized toys of the 20th century. The Barbie Doll, named after Handler's 15-year-old daughter, rocketed the Mattel company to nearly overnight success and became an icon of American culture.



Although Barbie has been roundly condemned by feminists as promoting an unrealistic body shape to young girls, Handler originally conceived the doll as a way for girls to imagine their futures as adult women. "I believed it was important to a little girl's self-esteem," she later said, "to play with a doll that has breasts." The development of the doll was also influenced by Handler's daughter's preference for adult paper dolls over the baby dolls that then dominated the toy market.



Although it was Mattel's first big success, the Barbie Doll was not the beginning of Handler's career as an inventor. While working at Paramount Studios in Hollywood, Handler first went into business with her husband producing picture frames. Mattel, named for Handler's husband and a business partner, was incorporated in 1945. In its early years, the company produced a toy ukulele and toy guns; it was among the first to market toys directly to children, sponsoring a year's run of the Mickey Mouse Club television show. After the runaway success of Barbie, the company added Ken, named after Handler's son, and later additional dolls named for Handler's grandchildren.



After losing a breast to cancer in 1970, and leaving Mattel in 1975, Handler turned her attention to helping other breast cancer survivors. Unhappy with the available breast prostheses, she invented her own, which she sold through a new company called Nearly Me.



Handler received numerous awards for her accomplishments. The Los Angeles Times named her Woman of the Year in Business in 1967, the United Jewish Appeal named her its first "Woman of Distinction," and the Toy Industry Hall of Fame inducted her in 1985.



Ruth Mosko Handler died in 2002. Although often a subject of satire and social criticism, Barbie lives on, with more than 100 million sold annually. Professional outfits and ethnic Barbies have updated the original, but the grown-up doll continues to entrance both young girls and older collectors.



Sources: Ruth Mosko Handler, Dream Doll: The Ruth Handler Story (Stamford, CT, 1994); http://www.ideafinder.com/history/inventors/handler.htm; Jewish Women in America: An Historical Encyclopedia, pp. 591-592; M.G. Lord, Forever Barbie: The Unauthorized Biography of a Real Doll (New York, 1994); Los Angeles Times, December 12, 1967, December 15, 1967; New York Times, April 29, 2002.






Jewish Women's Archive. "JWA Presents 'This Day in History' - March 9, 1959, Ruth Mosko Handler Unveils Barbie Doll." <http://www.jwa.org/this_week/03/09/Ruth_Mosko_Handler/index.html> (March 9, 2008).




Monday, February 11, 2008

Take Me Away: Pomegranate & Mango

After a long day dealing with grunge of the world or maybe just too many nutbags trying to ruin your day, try a super soak in the tub or a long relaxing hot shower with Softsoap's Pomegranate & Mango Moisturizing Body Wash.


The fragrance is to die for. It's light, citrusy and long-lasting without being overwhelming. I'm not usually a fruity fragrance person but I love this. Did I mention the price is right also? Pomegranate & Mango should be on every diva's shopping list. You can buy it at your local drugstore. Try it and let me know what you think.

Saturday, February 09, 2008

Note to Mattel: Where's my KLS Barbie?

OK, it's February. I've been waiting patiently for the official release of the Kimora Lee Simmons Barbie and now I find that she won't be released until mid-March? Oh, no! What's up with that Mattel?

Do whatever has to be done to make her fabulous. If that means I'm forced to wait another month, oh well. I'll just go back into Barbie rehab. I want my KLS Barbie and I want it now! LOL

Have a great weekend!

Smooches...

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Mattel makes special Barbie to commemorate America's first black sorority



This year is the 100th anniversary of my sorority, Alpha Kappa Alpha (AKA). To commemorate such an auspcious milestone, Mattel will produce a special edition AKA Barbie.


No doubt the doll will wear the organization's colors --- pink and green. Hopefully the box will document the sorority's rich heritage. I can hardly wait for the release of this doll. If you have any phtos of the prototype, please let me know!


Click here to learn more about AKA.

NOTE: I do not represent all of these photos as my own; these are photos of Barbie and other dolls that I find to be fabulous! If you are the actual photographer and would like to be credited, send me an e-mail.