16th 2008
Barbie: the choose life! knit sportswear edition

Posted under: Berkshire Conference, Dolls, fluff

Boy, most of you really hated “Barbie Death Camp!”  Here’s a soothing balm of Barbies and Kens in their vintage fashion knitwear.  (Connoisseurs will note that these aren’t the “real” Ken and Barbie dolls, but rather inferior knockoffs.  The male dolls here look strangely more childish than Mattel’s Ken ever looked.)

Check out that Beatles-era red skinny suit with black piping on “Ken” at the far left!  Snappy.  Also, someone should give top-row “Ken” the memo that says that heavy sweaters generally aren’t worn with swim trunks.  I kind of like that pale ice blue dress and coat combo next to swim trunk “Ken,” though–anyone know where I could find something like that?  I’ve got a big conference next month, and I’d like to look my best. 


6 Responses to “Barbie: the choose life! knit sportswear edition”

  1. Indyanna on 16 May 2008 at 12:30 pm #

    There’s an edgy and fairly new retro/consignment boutique a few blocks over from here that changes its window every day, sometimes twice a day, and now features the industry-changing $10,000 (mock) gift certificate. I’ll scout the joint out when it stops raining like it rains on Neptune. Those guys look pretty goofy, if I say. How does a casual outsider distinguish the “real” from the “knockoffs,” by the way? I’m a bit worried now about that windowbox doll colony over on Rittenhouse Square Street! Real, or roue?

  2. Susan on 17 May 2008 at 8:14 pm #

    ooo, let’s talk about what to wear for your big conference. I’ve been thinking the same. The suit looks like a kind of chanel knockoff — the kind of thing you can still get at Pendleton, but their stuff always looks a bit dowdy, and not nearly as cool as that blue knit suit…

  3. Historiann on 19 May 2008 at 12:30 pm #

    Susan–the wardrobe thing is a big concern. I’m thinking of going with pretty dresses and not caring if people think I’m overdressed. It’s our party, after all!

  4. Indyanna on 19 May 2008 at 2:34 pm #


    My first and so-far only Berkshire Conference, at Douglas College, Rugters, in 1990, was nothing but colorful sundresses from one end of the campus to the other. With no job market interview pit, no basement book exhibit protected by 300-pound Wackenhut linebackers, er, guards, and a true shortage of jowly guys in tweeds and dark suits, the sparkly weather seemed to be calling the shots. My cell-cam balked over the weekend and so can’t send in field notes on this retro-shop in Philly, but no one in their right mind would take fashion tips from Indyanna without a fly-in and look-see! This raises the question, what should guys be packing for this event, if not Beatles-suits, swimtrunks, and fuzzing sweaters? And will there be a cool official T-shirt like there was in 1990?

  5. Historiann on 19 May 2008 at 3:18 pm #

    Yes–official t-shirts, tote bags (excellent for groceries, now that we’re all ditching the plastic), and in a concession to the realities of local weather in June, umbrellas! They’ll all have the abstract art image on the cover of the program. (I wonder if I should set up a Word Press account and sell them on-line?)

    As for men: since the red knitted suit with black piping will probably be a little too warm for June in Minneapolis, I would say something in-between a t-shirt and a 3-piece suit. So, shirts with collars, no ties, and jackets optional (unless one is untenured or a grad student.)

  6. Indyanna on 19 May 2008 at 7:24 pm #

    Sounds great. I had wanted to say, that program cover is terrific! The whole program is, in fact, both as a physical artifact, and–where it really counts–as a compendium of ideas and knowledge.

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