When she first appeared on the scene in 1959, I was still young enough to be playing with dolls on a daily basis. My best friend got one right away, so naturally I wanted one too.
But, there were six kids in my family, and I was realistic enough to understand that my every whim could not be granted. That didn’t stop me from wishing, however.
For my birthday that year, I received what would probably be called a “generic” Barbie in today’s terms. After an initial twinge of disappointment, I noticed how pretty she was and that she actually looked quite a lot like Barbie. Within a few minutes I decided that she would be “Barbie” to me.
What fun my friend and I had “sewing” clothes for the dolls. You would have thought we were couturiers from a Paris fashion house! Snips of lace and silk and chiffon were draped and re-draped to create the most glamorous creations imaginable – well at least WE thought so!
That Christmas, there was a very special surprise waiting for me under the tree. My mother had crocheted two outfits for my doll – a coat with matching hat, and a skirt with jacket. She must have had to work on them while I was at school, or late at night after I’d gone to bed.
Today, I read that a 1959 mint-condition Barbie can sell for up to $10,000. I still have my “generic Barbie” and the pretty outfits that my Mum made for her. They’re not the official Barbie brand, and they’re not in mint condition, but I wouldn’t part with them for any price!