Digital News Report- This week, Barbie celebrated her 50th birthday at New York’s fashion week. More than 1,000 guests were invited to the event, which featured over 50 designer looks inspired by the plastic doll. The doll, which is produced by Mattel, has become a fashion and cultural icon during her 50 years.
Ruth Handler created the doll, which was launched in March of 1959, in an attempt to target a supposed gap in the doll market. In the 50’s, most dolls on the market were infants. Since her debut, an estimated one billion dolls have been sold worldwide.
Barbie has had many careers, including pilot, flight attendant, teacher, Police officer, astronaut, Doctor, and a NASCAR driver. She has also had over forty pets, including dogs, cats, horses, and even a lion, zebra, and a panda.
Despite its’ success, Barbie has seen numerous controversies throughout the year. The dolls physical appearance has been critiqued numerous times and even banned in many Middle Eastern countries. In 1997, the dolls hips were widened to better suit contemporary fashion designs, according to Mattel.