Barbie once stood alone at the top. An icon. The fashion doll. Number 1 in the hearts and minds of the world. But now, BRATZ have swaggered into the fray and are knocking on Barbie’s door with a vengeance. Mattel has responded with new lines such as the Teen Trends dolls, which came out this summer with more on the way this winter. But many parents and children are disturbed by the message the BRATZ dolls are sending.
Amazon.com is littered with comments such as: “Little girls shouldn’t be playing with these. It teaches them inappropriate behavior. These toys advertise dating too early, drinking, and wasting money on stuff they do not need at such a young age.”
Suddenly, the fashion doll industry has changed. Anything goes, and more companies, such as Tonner Dolls, Chic Boutique and the Alexander Doll Co., have more opportunities. The top slot is up for grabs, and the whole fashion doll market is growing and evolving. But at what cost?
Next month, TDmonthly Magazine talks with the heads of the fashion doll industry, the creators, the CEOs, the movers-and-shakers to find out where it’s all going and why. They talk of being role models and fashion trendsetters to little girls, of the changing face of fashion in general and the sophistication of the modern child. And they speak of the social responsibility that goes into making the dolls that shape a girl’s sense of self.