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  #1  
Old 03-09-2021, 10:05 AM
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honeychile honeychile is offline
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Memories of Barbie

Happy Birthday to Barbara Millicent Roberts, AKA Barbie!

We moved when I was four, and I was the only little girl on the block who did not have a Barbie. I went on a campaign for a Barbie doll that rivalled Ralphie's quest for an “official Red Ryder, carbine action, 200-shot, range model air rifle, with a compass in the stock and this thing that tells time.”!

"Why aren't you out playing?"
"Debbie and Pam are playing with their Barbies. I don't have one."
(multiply this by at least a gazillion!)

"Mrs. Mann asked me to make some clothes for Judy's Barbie. Would you like to see them?"
"I don't have a Barbie doll, but if I did, I would want her to have Friday Night Date. She would be so pretty..."

"Aren't you glad that you have your soft, cuddly Suzi Q doll to sleep with? "
"She takes up too much room. Barbies don't."
(Yeah, Dixie Lee was really messing with my mind at this point!)

But on Christmas morning, there she was, in all her glory! I'll have to find the photos - that! My first Barbie was a haired bubble cut Barbie who looked much like Jackie Kennedy, and I still have her!


What are your memories of growing up with Barbie?
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  #2  
Old 03-09-2021, 01:14 PM
navane navane is offline
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My first Barbie was the Western Barbie, which originally came out in 1980. I was 3 years old in 1980, and I recall being a little older when I had it, maybe 4 or 5. I received it as a gift; but, I'm not sure who gave it to me. What made Western Barbie unique was that she had a winking eye. There was a button in her back that, when pressed, would cause her to wink. I remember loving her sparkly white, black, and silver pantsuit. She also came with a cowboy hat, white boots, an autograph stamp, and some accessories.

I generally recall that this was the only Barbie I owned. Maybe I had one other later on (??); but, other girls in my school had several. One of my childhood best friends had 6-8 Barbies, a homemade Barbie mansion, the car and everything. My parents just weren't the type to let us kids go full bore into any trend like that. So, I treasured the one I did have and enjoyed playing with her.
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  #3  
Old 03-09-2021, 01:35 PM
Cheerio Cheerio is offline
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When I was about five, an Aunt who had three boys and no girls somehow gifted our family one original but slightly played with out-of-box Barbie (striped swimsuit included). Of course we didn't KNOW it was an original until the collecting trend took off AFTER we had played with her for many years.

With many girls in our family we each got Barbie friends with a different name, outfit, ability and/or skin tone from the doll our other sisters recieved: P.J., Francie, Skipper, Tutti, Malibu Barbie, Christie, etc. I was so enamored of my Francie's Bendable Legs I vigorously shook her by her special legs and broke them the first day. Only my sister had a Twist 'N Turn Waist Barbie.

Back in rural areas in our day there were not many mass-merch stores (Walmart/Target/Toys R Us) to shop at, so we rode bicycles to the dime store/pharmacy/hardware store to choose cool Barbie clothes and multiple cheap, bagged
doll accessories like small plastic soda bottles, toothbrushes, bowling balls with pins, record players with a tiny 45rpm record, tiny plastic dogs, and so on. I recall the coup of buying the beautiful Silver Sparkle Barbie Dress from our local hardware store TWO YEARS after the dress was introduced (commerce moved slowly in rural areas!).

We handmade ALOT of our Barbie clothes, our Barbie houses and our Barbie stuff. Cotton balls stuffed into sewn-shut wrist cuffs made Barbie pillows, with a big letter B written in magic marker on them that stood for BARBIE. Rugs were cut-up fuzzy shirts, room dividers were made from long 1960s shirt fringe or long strings of plastic beads.

The last year I played with Barbies I was fourteen, and that was because I still had to play Barbies with all my younger sisters. I decorated my homemade, cardboard box Barbie House that year with construction-papered red and orange walls.

I will admit: in my 30s when Xmas shopping for new Salvation Army toys I bought myself the Glitter Beach version of Theresa (friend to Barbie). Everything about her was so pretty! I kept her in-box for several years; eventually she did make it (still unused in-box) to a child through the Salvation Army. And I distinctly recall purchasing The First Presidential Candidate Barbie, for a Salvation Army Xmas donation, in 1991.
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Last edited by Cheerio; 03-09-2021 at 01:45 PM.
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  #4  
Old 03-09-2021, 06:29 PM
Kevin Kevin is offline
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We grew up with some girls next door who had a Barbie dreamhouse. I'll admit I was envious. GI Joe didn't have anything near as fun.

I'm reliving Barbie now with our daughter. We've got the dream house, camper, car, just got a closet for all of her clothes. Basically, we have a room of our house which is at least 50% Barbie occupied.
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  #5  
Old 03-09-2021, 07:09 PM
ladybug12 ladybug12 is offline
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Original Barbie, Ken, Midge, Skipper, Scooter. Original dream house and convertible (orange with aqua plastic interior). My mother made beautiful clothes for all. Sometimes I pouted because I wanted "store-bought" clothes but now I appreciate the exquisite detail of those clothes...still have some of them.
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  #6  
Old 03-09-2021, 07:11 PM
PersistentDST PersistentDST is offline
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I had a bag full of Barbies and clothes/shoes. I also had a Barbie house, which included an elevator that you pulled on a string (that was a big deal for me). I had a Barbie coloring book, bike (best bike ever, it was white, pink and turquoise) and a lunch box. My cousin had the Nintendo game and we played it regularly.

Mind you, I couldn’t stand the color pink, but I loved her nevertheless.

My Mother might still have a couple of Barbie and Midge dolls from when she was young. They were in pretty good shape last I saw them. I need to find out if she still has them.

One of my prized possessions is a Christmas Barbie (still in the box), that I got after my Grandmother passed away. She’s wearing this gorgeous red and gold gown. We absolutely weren’t allow to play with her! The box is falling apart, so I’m trying to find another way to showcase her.
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  #7  
Old 03-09-2021, 08:07 PM
AGDee AGDee is offline
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Not my first, but my best Barbie was the flight attendant with the plane. The little cart that could be pushed down the aisle was the best!
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  #8  
Old 03-10-2021, 08:08 AM
ForeverRoses ForeverRoses is offline
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My mom was a big believer in cooperative play, so between my two sisters and I we had three Barbies total , one cardboard house, and one car.
Mine was a "pink and pretty" Barbie. And we used to make new clothes for the barbies out of kleenex, papertowels, gauze pads and scotch tape.
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Old 03-10-2021, 08:32 AM
DaffyKD DaffyKD is offline
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I had a brunette bubble hair cut Barbie. Most of her clothes were made by my grandmother. When my parents moved, they forgot to clean out a cupboard in the garage and my Barbie was among my childhood keepsakes that were left behindd.

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Old 03-10-2021, 09:17 AM
chi-o_cat chi-o_cat is offline
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My favorite Barbie was Crystal Barbie. She had light purple eyes!

I also remember going through a phase towards the end of my Barbie days where I wanted some of them to be punk rockers, so I dyed their hair with food coloring.

And unfortunately, I never had the Barbie Dream House, but I did have the Colorforms version of it, so that's something, I guess?

@Kevin- I am assuming that you are talking about 1980's era GI Joe- the smaller action figures, not the original full sized doll? If so, the Headquarters/Command Center thing was pretty cool.
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  #11  
Old 03-10-2021, 09:20 AM
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honeychile honeychile is offline
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This is my first Barbie. I had other ones throughout the years (I collected them for a while), but my heart remained true to that first love of my Barbie-loving heart!

My mama also made a lot of Barbie clothes, including a spectacular wedding dress/ball gown. She used an old ruffled petticoat, and let me tell you, my friends (who had the store bought wedding and evening gowns) were ALL jealous!

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  #12  
Old 03-10-2021, 11:09 AM
Cheerio Cheerio is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ForeverRoses View Post
Mine was a "pink and pretty" Barbie. And we used to make new clothes for the barbies out of kleenex, papertowels, gauze pads and scotch tape.
Those new Barbie clothes must've been beautiful, since kleenex and paper towels used to come in pretty colors and multiple patterns!
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  #13  
Old 03-10-2021, 12:48 PM
ForeverRoses ForeverRoses is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cheerio View Post
Those new Barbie clothes must've been beautiful, since kleenex and paper towels used to come in pretty colors and multiple patterns!
We would get weirdly excited when a new paper towel roll was opened.
Then my brother would purposefully dump water on the barbies when he was mad at us to make their clothes fall off.
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  #14  
Old 03-10-2021, 04:31 PM
Kevin Kevin is offline
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Originally Posted by chi-o_cat View Post
@Kevin- I am assuming that you are talking about 1980's era GI Joe- the smaller action figures, not the original full sized doll? If so, the Headquarters/Command Center thing was pretty cool.
Yeah, my parents never would spring for those sorts of things. But now they have a grandchild and if there is a Barbie thing that exists, I probably have it in my living room.

Now that said, can anyone tell me more about these improvised clothing things? Y'all are talking about this as if it's all common knowledge. Explain it to me like I'm 5 (because I'll be explaining it to my 5 year old)
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  #15  
Old 03-17-2021, 07:29 PM
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Sciencewoman Sciencewoman is offline
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My sister and I were Barbie fanatics. We are 5 years apart, and it provided a common ground for us. We also had a Barbie room -- it was supposed to be a sauna but my architect dad never got around to completing that dream, so it became Barbie World. I sewed for Barbie, and my sister and I definitely kept an eye out for items whose scale enabled them to be repurposed for Barbie, such as exotic drink parasols.

We had a LOT of dolls and a LOT of accoutrements, and my daughter definitely picked up the Barbie gene.

My favorite was some weird 1970s Ken who came with a bunch of adhesive facial hair accessories -- mustaches, beards, side burns, etc. They had a peel-off back and didn't really last too long, but we thought he was cool. Talk about creepy.

Hahaha...I found him on eBay -- "Mod Hair Ken" from 1972.

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