How Do You Feel About Barbie?

I have always understood the feminist viewpoint about Barbie, the infamous Mattel doll, but I have to say that I have always had a soft spot for her, particularly her clothes, and of course making her hand knits. Granted most of Barbie’s life was a fantasy, and the clothes merely represented those fantasies. The clothes that dressed Barbie from the late 1950s and 1960s were very well made – mini versions of designer collections. Barbie, herself, was also of better quality than the ones that are manufactured today.

I have two 35th anniversary replica dolls from the late 1950s. When I get tired of larger projects, I knit wardrobes for them. As a former employee of the museum, I collected vintage patterns from the late 1950s and 60s, from various women’s magazines. I highly recommend a recent book by Nicky Epstein “Knits for Barbie Doll” for those moments when you desire to clothe your Barbie (or for a little girl who might enjoy them) and relive a part of childhood, with no guilty feelings of course.


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