Sunday, May 3, 2015
When Barbie met the Blonds...
When Barbie, the blond and blue-eyed symbol of mainstream America, was created in 1959 by Mattel Inc., it might have been hard to imagine that someday the gender-bending design team the Blonds would be the inspiration for arguably the most coveted doll in America.
“One of the great things about Barbie is that she continues to push the envelope,” said Cathy Cline, vice president of marketing in the United States for Mattel’s girls’ brands. “Barbie doesn’t worry about what other people think.”
The Blonds for Barbie doll comes at a time when gender lines in fashion are being blurred more every day. Male models like Andrej Pejic are starring in print layouts and gracing the cover of New York magazine. Androgyny has persisted as one of the most popular fashion trends for the last few years.
“Fashion is a form of self-expression and we believe that everyone should feel glamorous every day,” said Phillipe Blond, a designer of the Blonds.
Dan and Corina Lecca
Since their brand started in 2007, the Blonds have always expressed their love for Barbie. Mattel noticed, and then in 2009 asked the duo to participate in the doll’s 50th birthday fashion show, foreshadowing their present partnership.
Packed with boldface names and equally amusing fashion folk, the Blonds’ fashion shows are consistently theatrical, but no one seems to outshine the creative depth that Phillipe Blond and his partner and co-designer, David Blond, provide through their bedazzled corsets. The corsets, the crown jewel of every themed show, are also a favorite of celebrities like Katy Perry, Nicki Minaj and Beyonce.
Dan & Corina Lecca
What their clothes lack in sensibility, they make up for in glamour. The Blonds aren’t carried in any stores, and for the time being, they cater only to private clients. David said that he hoped this new relationship with Barbie will help their brand become more mainstream. “A whole different audience, that’s always good for anyone’s business,” he said. “And that’s the direction we would like to produce — things that are more accessible to more people. This is a step in the right direction.”
Given that he is most often found in nosebleed-high Louboutin’s, blond locks and a get-up that could out-sparkle Liza Minnelli, it’s easy to see where Phillipe’s appreciation may lie. Although Phillipe epitomizes the Blonds and Barbie, the doll is not Phillipe, but “the doll may loosely be based on Phillipe and this character that he plays within our little Blond world,” David said.
Ms. Cline said Mattel was talking to the Blonds about what’s next.
Posted by at 7:51 AM