As I was growing up, I was one of Barbie’s biggest fans. I had pretty much every accessory of hers I could get my hands on, from her beautiful Dreamhouse to her remote control convertible and pets. Yet, one of my biggest struggles was always keeping up with her outfits for every occasion. (Is the hastag #fiveyearoldproblems trending yet?) Something I definitely wish I had was the new Barbie Fashion Design Maker from Mattel, which gives girls the opportunity to dress up Barbie exactly how they want her to look.
The concept is simple: Kids can create designs with the prints and digital accessories included in software available online on the computer or as an app for Apple and Android tablets (the game can’t be downloaded on a smartphone). The creations can then be printed on fabric sheets and brought to life for Barbie to wear. The design combinations seem endless, as there are styles to suit all girls’ tastes. Also, kids can upload their own photos as additional patterns or designs, so Barbie’s outfit is totally customizable. They can also add details and embellishments such as ruffles, trims, and glitter.
The set, made for kids ages 6 and up, includes a Barbie doll wearing a plastic slip, shoes, and pink necklace; eight sheets of printable fabric; one sheet each of fabric ruffles, glitter trims, and glitter accessories; and a fashion portfolio. It’s important to note that the printed clothes are made for the specific Barbie that comes with the set. The included doll is also different than the other Barbies, as she is not poseable and stands like she is always runway ready.
Kids may need Mom or Dad’s help when they’re done with their designs and want to print them. It’s very important to be aware of two things when printing: Whether printed from the computer or wirelessly through a tablet, the file must be a PDF to perfectly match the paper, and all printing must be done on an inkjet printer. They also may also need help, depending on the age, with placing the fabric on the doll to avoid any creases or folds.
The designs can be easily peeled off and stored in the cute portfolio so Barbie wear her outfit over and over again. Refill packs are also available for purchase. Girls will love designing outfit after outfit for Barbie, and they can keep designing online or on the tablet without printing them. After all, shouldn’t the most popular doll in the world only wear outfits designed by her own loving owner?