It may seem like an old discussion, that story of the Barbie doll distorting the young girl’s view on the ideal woman’s body shape. But then again, when I look at catwalk shows, children’s toys and television series, the issue proofs to be as current as can be. The beauty ideal young children are confronted with from a very young age just isn’t realistic.
Realising the anomaly artist Nickolay Lamm designed a ‘normal’ Barbie. Using a 3D printer he transposed the average body sizes of a 19-year old woman to a more realistic, normal figure for a Barbie doll. In Photoshop he edited a photo of the white doll, adding colour, and typical Barbie hairstyle and clothes.
After the story became a press hit, Lamm decided to actually start producing an average sized doll under the motto ‘Average is beautiful’. In a pre-order crowd funding campaign started last spring some 14,000 backers pre-ordered over 19,000 dolls named Lammily for a total of half a million dollars. Production started in September and the first Lammily dolls are due to be shipped in November.
In the future Lamm hopes to extend the line to embrace diversity, from race to body type. He also envisions to surround the doll with accessories reflective of real life. On his own site Lamm writes: “I envision her reading books that inform and playing instruments that educate on the sounds and intricacies of music. I see her constructing her own home, cultivating her own garden while learning about the wonders of plants and vegetables and eating these nourishing and healthy foods.”
That sounds like a whole new fairy tale!