I think growing up we all had the dream of designing our very own Barbie doll. I know I did. I literally had hundreds of Barbies and clothes to go with them. I was totally the little girl that was the queen of Barbies and you couldn’t tell me nothing. Well one little girls fascination with Barbie dolls from way back has now turned into a new collaboration.

Shiona Turini is someone whole I truly am fascinated with. The amount of work she has contributed to the fashion industry is endless and this new addition to the fashion industry is amazing. Turini is a consultant, stylist, and costume designer. She has worked with the likes of Christian Dior, Elle, Beyoncé, the hit show Insecure, and many more.

Barbie has had a past with the lack of diversity in their collections. For little black girls like myself and Shiona Turini, we craved for more dolls that looked like us. Well Shiona Turini has collaborated with Barbie to produce a collection of diverse Barbie doll campaign in honor and celebration of Black History Month. The 4 part campaign features different Barbies in beautiful hairstyles and popping outfits. There are dolls with afros, braids, passion twists and more. The campaign for the new Barbies are in the idea of “Sisterhood”. One part of the campaign are these African American dolls in all black which represents the African American Activist in out past time.

According to Elle magazine, “It was important for me to reflect Barbie as an icon through the lens of black culture during Black History Month,” said by Turini.

Shiona Turini took to Instagram to thank her gratitude to this new collaboration:

Black Barbie dressed in… || I grew up obsessed with @barbie and while she was one of my first fashion icons, I clearly remember searching shelves for a doll that looked like me and coming up empty handed. The first black Barbie was introduced in 1980 – in a sparkly red dress with an Afro pick in her hair. Here she is, on her customized throne, surrounded by friends created and styled by me. I hope other young children, and adult Barbie lovers, are as excited to see themselves reflected in these dolls as I am. Thank you @barbiestyle – for collaborating with me to create barbies with braids, finger waves and everything in between. Chicks by the layers, all different flavors. And even a curvy doll, in a crop top, with waist length twists. Baby Shiona is PROUD. Representation matters and I’m so grateful to be a part of this moment.

@shionat via Instagram

It is truly amazing to see Barbie dolls of my color celebrated in such a powerful and bold way. African American dolls are not always showcased as powerful figures. It is a great feeling seeing these beautiful BLACK Barbies shine bright and also being designed by an African American woman herself.


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