12 Things I Learned From Barbie


Not only does she have her own LinkedIn page these days but this girl has been around the block a few times to say the least. Barbie has been breaking down barriers for women since the day she was born! She’s had over 100 careers which I don’t think anyone else on this planet can possibly complete with. It’s as though she can be in more than one place at a time. This girl is magic and she’s makin' moves. I had a chance to catch up with her recently and our conversation dove into all sorts of fabulousness from her fashion choices to how she 'leans in' in the workplace. Her new hashtags (#unapologetic and #barbieinspired) say it all and here are 12 things I learned from Barbie herself…

Tell me about the new Barbie Fashion Design Maker? How does it work?

It’s such a fun app that enables anyone create new fashions for me- there are hundreds of options to mix and match, designing all kinds of looks with just the touch of a few buttons! The Fashion Design Maker comes with real printable fabric that works in any ink jet printer, and it also has trims, glitter and a fashion portfolio. Endless outfits are easy by downloading the free design app, then girls can select elements from existing designs or customize from their own photos and print for a one-of-a-kind look. They peel off the outfits from the fabric paper and I can wear them for a runway-ready look!

How would you describe your style?

Versatility is key, I like to be dressed for any occasion, you never know when you might get invited somewhere fun!

How has your style changed over the years?

I have learned a few things that I’m happy to share over my 55 fashion able years- make friends with great designers and they’ll never steer you wrong. I’m not afraid to take a risk now and then, trends are great fun, just be sure to go with something iconic – I gravitate to clothes that makes a statement with pink. When you look back at something that isn’t in style anymore, it will hold up if it captures the essence of that time period — all trends come back around. Lucky for me I’ve got a big closet!

What is your go-to outfit as a professional woman?

My friends helped me design a pink and black sheath dress that is just the epitome of entrepreneurial chic. But the most important thing is to find a look that is captivating, but comfortable.

What else are you working on right now?

I was really all over the world this Fashion Month. I launched my fashion Instagram page @BarbieStyle so all of my girlfriends could follow along my journey. I started at NYFW to launch my new Barbie Fashion Design Maker with help from CFDA designers and tech expert, Jesse Draper. Then I was off to Milan to act as the muse for Jeremy Scott and continue to Paris to partner with my longtime friend, Karl Lagerfeld.

As a fashion icon, how do you stay on top of all the latest trends?

It certainly helps to get a front row seat at Fashion Week- especially when you are my height. I am really excited by up and coming designers – watching them achieve their dreams is really thrilling for me- and the next generation is a great indication of where fashion is headed.

What is your personal motto or mantra?

Dream Big! Anything is possible!

Who are your girl crushes right now?

How could I choose! I was just with one of my favorite stylists, Rachel Zoe- she’s a great inspiration. And of course, Anna Wintour, who isn’t in awe of her? And of course, the ladies of Fifth Harmony, who I asked to sing my anthem this year. Honestly, I think it’s just an amazing time to be a female, it seems that everywhere I look there are great women just crushing it.

What is your morning routine?

I am a little obsessed with Instagram- so I can’t resist sneaking a peek as soon as my eyes open. And I have to do yoga first thing- otherwise I just feel stiff all day. On days I am not traveling or don’t have to work, I just throw my hair in a ponytail and head to the beach.

I understand you have a new Instagram account @BarbieStyle – What can we expect to see there?

You can definitely expect to see lots of fab new #OOTDs, all of the fun events I attend, and tons of fashion inspirations and creations for girls of all ages!

What inspires you to continue breaking down walls for women?

Ruth Handler, my creator, impressed upon me the importance of inspiring girls of all ages. It’s really what I was made to do. I want to encourage girls to celebrate each other’s successes. Because we all succeed together. Every wall that comes down empowers a new girl who in turn can be an inspiration to the girls who follow her.

How do you prioritize?

Oh it’s a lot to juggle multiple businesses, travel the world, keep up on social media and make sure the Dreamhouse is maintained. I have to admit- I have a lot of people who prop me up. So when it comes to prioritizing, I always put my girls first. And puppies- Taffy definitely knows how to get my attention too.

UCLA grad, Jesse Draper is a technology expert and creator and host of The Valley Girl Show through which she has become a spokesperson for startups and has helped to pioneer the way of new media content distribution. She oversees everything from pre-production to distribution of the show. Draper started the show because she realized there was no FUN business talk show, only grilling teeth clenching interviews, and she believes the most interesting and inspiring people in the world are the ones who've started a business. In her former life, she was on a Nickelodeon show called “The Naked Brother's Band”. Draper also writes columns for Mashable, Forbes.com and San Francisco Magazine and speaks at business conferences around the world including SXSW, DLD, TEDx, TechVentures and STREAM.

jesse draper