Barbie: An American Icon

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  • Topic: Barbie, Ruth Handler, Mattel
  • Pages : 2 (615 words )
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  • Published : November 9, 2012
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Hatfield 1
Kristin Hatfield
Professor Clark
English 101 3037
Page 175 Assignment 4 Paper 5
October 31, 2012
Barbie- An American Icon
Icons like Barbie recognized for their popularity and effects on society. Barbie is a subject of obsession all over the world. Collectors, consumers and even some designers become enthralled in the Barbie world. Designers create special designs to fit a specific trend of the high fashion runways. Collectors all over the world collect and spend amazing amounts of money to have the original Barbie in their collection. The consumers have made Barbie a true icon in American culture.

The Barbie doll was invented in 1959 by Ruth Handler (co-founder of Mattel), whose own daughter was called Barbara. The Barbie doll was introduced to the world at the American Toy Fair in New York City. Barbie's job was teenage fashion doll. In 1965, Barbie first had bendable legs, and eyes that open and shut. In 1967, a Twist 'N Turn Barbie was released that had a moveable body that twisted at the waist. The best-selling Barbie doll ever was 1992 Totally Hair Barbie, with hair from the top of her head to her toes.

The first Barbie was sold for $3. Additional clothing based on the latest runway trends from Paris were sold, costing from $1 to $5. In the first year (1959), 300,000 Barbie dolls were sold. Today, a mint condition "#1" (1959 Barbie doll) can fetch as much as $27,450. To date, over 70 fashion designers have made clothes for Mattel, using over 105 million yards of fabric. Barbie has had a huge impact on the fashion industry for over fifty years. . (Mary Bellis, About.com Guide)

Hatfield 2
This is what the proportions of a life-size Barbie doll would look like
Image from (thefrisky.com)

There has been some controversy over Barbie Doll's figure when it was realized that if Barbie was a real person her measurements would be an impossible 36-18-38. Barbie's "real" measurements are 5 inches (bust), 3 ¼ inches...
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