Mattel worked with costume designer Turini to outfit a set of Barbies in 10 different hairstyles, skin tones, and body types to create Barbies with braids, finger waves and everything in between.
In an Instagram post announcing the collaboration, Turini wrote: “Chicks by the layers, all different flavors. And even a curvy doll, in a crop top, with waist-length twists. Baby Shiona is PROUD.”
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“I grew up obsessed with Barbie and while she was one of my first fashion icons, I clearly remember searching shelves for a doll that looked like me and coming up empty-handed,” she added.
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Black Barbie dressed in… || I grew up obsessed with @barbie and while she was one of my first fashion icons, I clearly remember searching shelves for a doll that looked like me and coming up empty handed. The first black Barbie was introduced in 1980 – in a sparkly red dress with an Afro pick in her hair. Here she is, on her customized throne, surrounded by friends created and styled by me. I hope other young children, and adult Barbie lovers, are as excited to see themselves reflected in these dolls as I am. Thank you @barbiestyle – for collaborating with me to create barbies with braids, finger waves and everything in between. Chicks by the layers, all different flavors. And even a curvy doll, in a crop top, with waist length twists. Baby Shiona is PROUD. Representation matters and I’m so grateful to be a part of this moment.
According to the New York Post, looks for the Barbies were inspired by three color themes: monochromatic, snakeskin mixed with black and white and sherbet colors.
Turini said she spent many childhood hours dressing Barbies.
“My vision was to style diverse dolls in bold looks with themes seen throughout my work, like contrasting snakeskin and leopard, challenging traditional uniformity”.
She got inspired by the first black Barbie, introduced in 1980 dressed in a sparkling red dress with an Afro. Her red collection pays homage to the doll and as part of a 40th anniversary black Barbie doll, Mattel has also brought back that first black Barbie, dressed in bold red.
Whilst the outfits aren’t for sale, the dolls modeling them are part of a new release of Black History Month Barbie dolls.
In a bid to be more inclusive, Mattel has been creating diverse dolls in different sizes, colors, abilities, and professions. The company recently included the gender-neutral doll, the Barbie Fashionistas line, the Barbie Wellness collection, and the Judge Barbie.