B reviews,  Bug,  Niece-com-poops,  party party

In a Barbie World

Barbie Mirror

Did you know that Barbie has a real house in Malibu? A real beach mansion that you can walk around and take pictures in? I didn’t either. It’s pretty cool. It’s not actually Barbie’s real house. It’s a rented beach house that Mattel hired a famous interior decorator (Jonathan Adler) to decorate in honor of Barbie’s 50th birthday. Yep, Barbie is 50. She looks pretty good for fifty.

I don’t know how I got on the invite list to tour the mansion but when I got the email, I didn’t hesitate to say yes. Blogging has its perks and this sort of invite is not to be sneezed at. I did feel a twinge of guilt though because I’ve never really been a huge Barbie fan. I never even had a real Barbie doll until I was 14 and then it was only because I had this fantasy that I was going to grow up and be a fashion designer. I made clothes for her and decorated a drawer to look like her house, but I never really played with her.

I do have a daughter now though, so I’m a little more open to all things girly. I also have a crazy pink-loving niece who is a huge Barbie fan, so I said sign me up!

Barbie's Car

We got all dolled up in our fanciest outfits and set off to party like blonde bombshells. Just kidding. We weren’t invited to that party. (That was the night before.) This party was more of a tour of the house and a tea party in the back yard which is exactly our speed.

Why can't we play with it?

the living room

suddenly shy

Barbie's bedroom


It was really cool to see so much Barbie memorabilia that has been collected over the years. From the famous Warhol painting to the scary Project Runway Barbie-hair chandelier to the petticoated chairs and beyond. Everything was blinged out in pink and the letter B—which is cool for me since I’m partial to that letter myself.

B pillow

60's Barbies

I really like the older dolls. I wish I was one of those girls who collected dolls and kept them all nice in their boxes. Le Sigh. I don’t think my rock collection of quartz is ever going to have any value.

SuperChic channels Barbie

My girly-girl niece, SuperChic, was in heaven. She’s been walking in pink plastic high heels since she was two so this was a dream come true for her. If anyone can channel Barbie, it would be Superchic. I think the only thing that disappointed her about the whole event was that Barbie never showed up. She kept asking me if Barbie was going to come to her party and I had to say that sadly, I didn’t think so. That was okay though. SuperChic has enough diva personality to make up for the missing birthday girl.

the spread

strawberry lemonade

picking at the food

After the tour we were invited to a tea party in the backyard overlooking the Pacific Ocean. It was a bit of an overcast day but that didn’t hamper the fun at all. We drank strawberry lemonade and munched on pink macaroons, red velvet cupcakes and berries dipped in whipped cream. Then for dessert (as if we needed anymore sugar) there was a s’mores bar and cylinder vases filled with pink candy to snack on.

s'more bar

candy, capuccino, s'mores and barbie shoes!

(The Barbie shoes were not edible but I was tempted!)

props or to play with?

come back ball!

The staff treated us like celebrities. The girls ran around wild and no one complained about them playing with the pink beach balls that decorated the spa and pool or leaving Barbie parts strewn across the living room. It was all very interactive and fun. There was even a make-your-own lip gloss station but I got kind of weirded out about germs and wouldn’t let my girls sample their concoctions. (I know, what a meanie.) I figured there were plenty of other fun things for them to do. They can make their own lip gloss at home someday.

Barbie Art

Between the sweet things to eat, the nail-painting station and even a Barbie movie to watch, we had plenty to keep us entertained. It was really a treat. If we weren’t fans of Barbie before we entered the house, we certainly were by the time we left.

Now if only I can get that “I’m a Barbie Girl” song out of my head…


  • Becca

    That sounds so fun! My daughter would have loved it, especially the nail painting station and lip gloss station. Although I too wouldn’t have allowed lip gloss sampling – germs *shudder*

  • Barb

    Lucky ducks! I’ve always been a Barbie fan. It was my favorite thing to play when I was little. I still have them tucked away in the closet. A couple of them are the older ’60’s versions … before bendable legs and with the heavy blue eyeshadow on their lids. Very vintagey.

  • Madelyn

    May I use that first pic of you and the Barbie’s around the mirrow – that is MY Barbie and I would love to put it on my FBand Blog for two young ladies (now) who used to love to play with her – I would link back to you.

    No pressure.
    ~Mad(elyn) in Alabama

  • pinky

    that is one of the most fun outings with little girls that I can imagine! The cylinder of shoes reminds me of the big water-filled towers at FAO Schwartz that have thousands of Barbie shoes bubbling up from the bottom. Fabulous!

  • BeachMama

    I love this post!! Although I was a fan of Barbie growing up, I don’t think I compare to the fans that are out there today. I mean I was playing with Barbie before there were 50 bajillion different Barbies. I actually asked my youngest Sister last week if she happened to still have my one and only Barbie and she just looked at me and said, “I think she went away a long time ago”. She still has all of hers though.

    So cool that you guys got to go to the tea party, the table overlooking the ocean is worth it alone. Great photos!

  • Gayle

    How fun! That is so cool. I was a huge Barbie fan and played Barbies with one of my cousins every day we got together for years!

    Ummm…those hair chandeliers are yucky! What were they thinking?

  • Jennifer W.

    Those red tights are kickin’! Way to go Mama. By the way, thanks again for your party advice. I’ve settled on a ladybug theme and you were totally right – budget schmudget. I’m having to reel myself back in. Although the cake I’m making is pretty freaking sweet if I do say so. Barbie house looks like Heaven for little girls.

  • sunny

    I love love these photos! Such great colors and so stylish! If you have any of just the house exterior or pool I would be interested in buying them to enlarge and frame for my “americana” room!

  • sunny

    ps: I love Adler’s quote when he’s asked where Ken is: “ken’s around. but does Barbie need Ken? NO.”

  • josephine

    You know, I didn’t take any. I was kicking myself earlier for not shooting an establishing shot but the girls and I were so overwhelmed with the excitement, we just ran in without thinking!

    Regarding Ken… I know! So funny!

  • gingermog

    I forgot to comment on this post, but wow what an experience! Breathtaking! I only had one Barbie. Sindy reigned supreme in the UK when I was a kid. She had a big head and ahem a slightly underdeveloped body against the definitely grown up Barbie.