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Barbie clothes -- for real people

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<!-- TextStart -->By Angela Moore

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Fairies leaped, surfer girls danced and fashionistas sashayed down the catwalk as Mattel showed off its Barbie clothing line -- for real people.

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The toy maker, best known for its Barbie dolls and Hot Wheels cars, was shining the spotlight on its well-known brands at the International Licensing Show on Tuesday through consumer products like cosmetics, fragrances, music CD, and even a glamorous clothing line for adult women.

"Mattel is the holder of intellectual property that appeals to kids," Matt Bousquette, president of Mattel Brands told Reuters in an interview. "There's a lot more that we can do with that property than just making toys."

Among the performances at the show, Mattel had little girls dressed as winged fairies performing a ballet, and silver confetti pouring from the ceiling. A group of older girls performed a 1960s inspired beach dance promoting clothing and products related to the Cali Girl brand.

Mattel also showcased a couture line for adult women, already very popular in Japan, that the company said it is "cautiously considering" launching at some high-end U.S. retailers this fall.

Mattel wants to sell the clothing and cosmetics only at select retailers to strengthen the brand equity, said Richard Dickson, senior vice president of Mattel Brands consumer products.

Weak sales of Barbie dolls, a lacklustre retail environment, and strong competition have hurt Mattel's profits recently. The company is trying to raise Barbie's non-toy profile as well as tap a grown-up fan base as part of a long term plan to reinvigorate the toy brand.

El Segundo, California-based Mattel is introducing a story-based "worlds of Barbie" strategy for lines such as new Cali Girl, Fairytopia and Princess and the Pauper doll, many with accompanying DVDs.

Dickson said the popularity of Barbie products for older consumers could trickle down and benefit the toy category.

"From an aspirational perspective you re-engage the younger girl with Barbie, she sees Barbie as relevant, fashionable, cool," Dickson said. "The doll will be the piece of that they can have."

The toy industry is working to recover from a year that wasn't much fun, marked by slowing industry sales and bankruptcy filings by KB Toys and the parent of upscale FAO Schwarz toy stores. Even No. 2 toy seller Toys R Us. is in the midst of a strategic evaluation, which analysts say will lead to many U.S. toy store closures.

The 2003 holiday season was also marked by severe price cutting on toys, which can lead to the erosion of a brand's perceived value by consumers, analysts have said.

"Our ability to add value at retail depends on the strength of our brands," Bousquette said. "How retailers price is up to them, but (the price cutting) we went through last year was not healthy for the industry. I hope it doesn't happen again."

 
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I wouldn't, but there are enough Barbie-wannabe's to keep this fashion line going. Of course you know I'm talking about the bleach-blond, lipo'd, tanning bed-bronzed, gel-nailed, walking popsicle sticks with overblown ta-ta implants from Mexico. Once those bimbos squeeze themselves into Mattel Couture, all they'll need is a fake plastic dog to drag around! Oh, wait. That's their metrosexual boyfriend.

"Meow!!"

 
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Originally Posted by KittySkyfish I wouldn't, but there are enough Barbie-wannabe's to keep this fashion line going. Of course you know I'm talking about the bleach-blond, lipo'd, tanning bed-bronzed, gel-nailed, walking popsicle sticks with overblown ta-ta implants from Mexico. Once those bimbos squeeze themselves into Mattel Couture, all they'll need is a fake plastic dog to drag around! Oh, wait. That's their metrosexual boyfriend.
"Meow!!"

LOL> Hilarious post and scarily true! Next thing you know, they will come with a blow up Ken doll to put in the passenger seat so "Barbie" can ride in the diamond lane.
 
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Well, that is if she would ever leave the house. I hear those dolls are anatomically correct...


Originally Posted by Californian LOL> Hilarious post and scarily true! Next thing you know, they will come with a blow up Ken doll to put in the passenger seat so "Barbie" can ride in the diamond lane.
 
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OMG.. The mere implications ..... LOL!! Are you saying that Barbie is not otherwise 'fulfilled' with all of her jewelry, outifits, beach friends and Corvette? Wow... you've got quite a marketing idea there, KittySkyfish... I wonder if Madison Ave. would buy it. You could be super super filthy rich! Maybe they'll have to create a new Barbie called "shut-in Barbie" with her blow up Ken doll sold separately and outfits optional.

 
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LOL! The Shut-In Barbie package would come with the "complete" Ken, a pump-top jug of Astroglide and a few extra silicone toys for when she wants variety.

Originally Posted by Californian OMG.. The mere implications ..... LOL!! Are you saying that Barbie is not otherwise 'fulfilled' with all of her jewelry, outifits, beach friends and Corvette? Wow... you've got quite a marketing idea there, KittySkyfish... I wonder if Madison Ave. would buy it. You could be super super filthy rich! Maybe they'll have to create a new Barbie called "shut-in Barbie" with her blow up Ken doll sold separately and outfits optional.
 
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Actually, I think they prefer the Ruffles 'cause they taste better coming up. Now I went too far...meow!

Originally Posted by Californian Bulimic chicks don't eat Ruffles. They prefer the fat free chips.
 
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HAaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa ok now you've done it! Don't get me started... I can get pretty meow myself.

ICK! but LOL big time. UG!

 

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