Friday, August 24, 2007

Groovy Barbies, Maaaaan

Oooh how I loved Barbies as a kid! My first Barbie was this ugly, short haired, hard plastic, heavy lidded, blue eyeshadowed freak from 1964. I hated her. I wanted a modern Barbie of the 1970s variety with the long flowing blonde hair and Bob Mackie gown collection. Instead I was given hand me downs from a neighbor. A Barbie storage box filled with 60s Barbies and 60s Barbie clothing. I hated them so much, I let my brother blow them up with firecrackers. Oooh how I cringe thinking about that today. I could have had quite the payday on Ebay!

I was in 6th grade when I stopped playing with Barbies. The summer before 7th grade, actually. That's when Barbie got replaced by contacts, designer jeans, makeup, and boys.

I remember putting my Barbies away and my mother telling me she'd always save my Barbie collection just in case I had a little girl some day.

With every move in college and post college and post marriage(s), I schlepped that Barbie storage container around. I grumbled and bitched and complained, but knew deep down that one day it would all be worth it.

That day was today!

Today my husband bought our little girl a, "Happy first week of school you did such a great job" gift. An Ariel Barbie. She already has Mulan (of course) and Belle (given before she was interested in dolls. Belle was left on the floor and her hand was chewed off by Zappa Cat.)

Ariel came home and was immediately stripped of her gown because, "It's too sparklie and the sparklies will get all over my hands!"

That's when I had THE moment. The moment I've been waiting for all these years. "Honey, how about we put Ariel in different dress?" And with that I grabbed my Barbie case from Narnia's top closet shelf. I opened it up, expecting all the ooohs and ahhhhs I've dreamed of all these years. Instead, this is what I heard:

"Those dresses are ugly! I want a pretty dress for Ariel!"

There were gold lame' pantsuits. Neon orange ski pants. Numerous slinky one shoulder baring tube dresses. And lots and lots and lots of suede vests with fringe. The 70s wasn't a pretty decade, was it?

That's when I discovered a pocket in the side of the case. My secret stash! My all time favorite outfits that I'd hide away when going to sleep overs. I didn't want my girlfriends to dress their Barbies in my favorite dresses. And you all know the joy of playing Barbies with other girls was trying on their Barbie's outfits!

That's when I found this little number. Do any of you knit or crochet? I think a great pocket change business idea would be to make hand-made Barbie outfits. One of a kind little numbers that can be passed down from generation to generation. Fools like me would buy them. If you use this idea, send me one, will you? I swear I will make the girls save them for their girls!

I'm assuming this one was hand-made. There's no tags and the workmanship is perfect. It's from early to mid 1960s. It's white, but came out yellow in the pic. I love the turquoise beads. You can click on the pic for a larger, more detailed version.

Here's the back. I love those tiny buttons!
Quite a contrast to this early 1970s bright orange jumpsuit with gold lame' belt.
And this cha cha number that was on my Marie Osmand doll. Donny had matching pants and a ruffly jacket.
Here's Miss Boo's new Barbie posse. On the left we have my 1970s Barbie who looks just like Christy Brinkley. Then there's Ariel. Belle, the partial amputee. And Mulan. What's up with Mulan's hair? All the dolls are wearing the 70s outfits with the exception of bed head Mulan.
Each night before Boo goes to sleep, we must arrange the posse on her bed as shown below. Barbies on top, then the bigger dolls on the bottom. Boo has the Cinderella carriage bed, so the Barbie's end up hanging or dangling from various parts of the "pumpkin." Also note the Mulan book and Disney Princess night light. Oh and in the middle of all that Disney Madness is a Chinese doll we purchased in China. But Narnia thinks she is Melody, Ariel's daughter.
We never intended for Walt Disney to upchuck all over our home. It just kinda happened. One Disney item attracted another. Now we're the Duggar Family of Disney Dolls.


J said...

OMG! I have a huge collection of 70s Barbie clothes, 90% hand-made by my mom. She's the most irritatingly perfectionist seamstress ever, so they're all gorgeously made yet at the same time so ugly (it was the 70s). mom won't let me have them!!! She's saving them for my daughter to play with at her house someday. Pffttt.

HK Muse said...

My mom sold all my Barbie stuff. She said she would keep it for me, but instead she made a buck. That's just like her.

Anyway, my first Barbies were the Donny and Marie Osmond dolls with the stage set. I was not even three when I got them (I was the only girl in the entire family, so aunts and uncles were excited to buy girl stuff for a change). I called them Donny and Barie Osmond. I would be corrected, 'It's Marie, not Barie' and I would say 'That's what I said, Barie' all matter-of-factly. My family found that quite humorous at my expense until I got a kitten for Christmas when I was 11 yrs old and named her Barie just so it would take some of the joy out of it.

Gawd, I loved those Osmonds!

Ahh...the memories.

tubelessstl said...

ut oh.. I have a huge stash of cool barbie outfits too like you do from when I was a kid. I put them up on the top shelf of the nursery. I hope our future daughter one day likes them, Yikes. I never thought I would here what you heard from N. hehe

My barbie I inherited is one from the first few years. She had a "ring" of hair on her head and the only way she can wear it is up in a pony tail. No all over hair like the barbies of today. I am sure my child will one day turn her nose up saying that is an "uncool" barbie. ahahaha

Does N let you get down and play barbie with her? I still love playing when I am babysitting.

Mutha said...

I had a Donnie and Marie lunch box.

So funny that many of us had Donnie and Marie dolls as kids and now Marie sells dolls on QVC.

Mutha said...

Tubeless- she doesn't let me play. She refuses to change the clothing on her dolls. INstead she dresses up her Little People pets. There's currently a dog wearing a pink ball gown and a cat wearing yellow hot pants.