Mattel has launched a Lunar New Year Barbie doll in partnership with world-renowned Chinese fashion designer Guo Pei.
The doll, set to release today, features Guo’s “signature embroidery detailing,” with intricate designs of golden phoenixes and water and wave motifs that traditionally appear on attire worn by Chinese royalty, according to Mattel.
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The designs represent femininity, grace and the “passage of time and the cycle of life and renewal.”
“For many Asian communities around the world, Lunar New Year festivities bring an occasion to honor one’s heritage and wish for good fortune in the year to come,” Mattel wrote on its official Barbie Instagram page.
Guo played a very active role in designing the new doll and picking its special features, from its hair accessories and shoes down to the Mari sculpt for its face, Mattel Senior Product Designer Joyce Chen said.
Although the exact name of the dress was not stated, it appears that Guo based its design on the qun kwa, a traditional Chinese wedding dress that often features intricate motifs incorporating dragons and phoenixes. The traditional attire consists of two pieces: a brocade jacket and a long skirt. The doll is also a follow-up to Mattel’s previous Lunar New Year doll Signature release, which featured a peony-print cheongsam.
The box that the doll comes in also matches the elegance of its traditional Chinese dress. Created by Senior Packaging Designer Laydiana Chiv, the doll’s packaging has an “extruded window that stands out from the doll box” and “golden accent foil.”
The Lunar New Year Barbie doll, a project facilitated by the Asian Couture Federation, will be available for purchase at $75 beginning on Jan. 24 with a three-doll purchase limit.
In August last year, the toy company honored Dr. Audrey Sue Cruz, a Filipino American internal medicine physician from Las Vegas, as one of its “medical role model” dolls. “I felt that it was a huge honor, because I’m also the only Asian included in this group of new Barbies,” Cruz told NextShark.
However, Mattel struck controversy in the same month for the lack of Asian representation in its line of Tokyo Olympics Barbie dolls, as NextShark previously reported.
Featured Image via @Barbie