We are delighted to offer this Bradley well-preserved, Mattel genuine Barbie wristwatch to the legions of fans out there.
The chrome case with matte bezel measures 25 mm in diameter, excluding crown and lugs and surrounds a pure white dial under a with blonde Barbie in her blue dress accurately counting hours and minutes, all under a new crystal, to to keep our little girl right-on-time. It is signed, Swiss Made, 1973 Mattel Inc., a registered trademark of Mattel.
The 1 jewel, Swiss movement sets and winds as it should, is running strong, and keeping good time.
It has been fitted with a supple new white genuine leather strap with stainless buckle.
Stock Code: B-19
THE HISTORY OF BARBIE
Barbie, in full Barbara Millicent Roberts, an 11-inch- (29-cm-) tall plastic doll with the figure of an adult woman that was introduced on March 9, 1959, by Mattel Inc, a southern California toy company. Ruth Handler who cofounded Mattel with her husband, Elliot, spearheaded the introduction of the doll. Barbie’s physical appearance was modeled on the German Bild Lilli doll, a risqué gag gift for men based upon a cartoon character featured in the West German newspaper Bild Zeitung.
Since the doll’s inception its body has incited controversy. Mothers in a 1958 Mattel-sponsored market study before the doll’s release criticized Barbie for having “too much of a figure.” Mattel circumvented this problem, however, by advertising Barbie directly to children via television. Mattel, in fact, upon sponsoring Walt Disney’s television program in 1955, became the first toy company to broadcast commercials to children.
In response to consumer demand, in 1961 Mattel brought out Barbie’s ultimate “accessory”—her boyfriend, Ken. (The Handlers’ children were named Barbara and Ken.) In 1963 Mattel added Barbie’s best friend, Midge, and in 1964 her little sister, Skipper. By 1968 Barbie had been issued “friend” dolls of color, but not until 1980 was the Barbie doll itself released in an African American incarnation.
Since the 1970s, Barbie has been criticized for materialism (amassing cars, houses, and clothes) and unrealistic body proportions. In fact, in 1994 researchers in Finland announced that if Barbie were a real woman, she would not have enough body fat to menstruate. Yet many women who played with the doll credit Barbie with providing an alternative to restrictive 1950s gender roles. Unlike baby dolls, Barbie did not teach nurturing. Outfitted with career paraphernalia, the doll was a model for financial self-sufficiency. (Barbie’s résumé includes, among other things, airline pilot, astronaut, doctor, Olympic athlete, and United States presidential candidate.) Nor was the doll defined by relationships of responsibility to men or family. Barbie has no parents or offspring. When in the early 1960s consumers clamored for a Barbie-scale baby, Mattel did not make Barbie a mother but issued a “Barbie Baby-Sits” playset.
Mattel registered Barbie as a work of art, but the doll has also inspired works of art, including a 1986 Andy Warhol portrait and photographs by William Wegman and David Levinthal. Novelists, including A.M. Homes and Barbara Kingsolver, have used the doll in fiction.
Barbie is a very popular collectible. Fans are interested in both old Barbies and the special edition Barbies that Mattel creates to cater to this market. Although Barbie’s sales since the year 2000 have not risen as steeply as they did in the 1990s, they still amount to more than a billion dollars annually. Every second, Mattel calculates, two Barbies are sold somewhere in the world.
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