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April 21 marks Britain’s Queen Elizabeth II’s 96th birthday, and to celebrate the monarch’s birthday and her Platinum Jubilee year, toymaker Mattel released a new royal Barbie doll in the queen’s likeness.
The Queen Elizabeth II Barbie ($75) was released today to retailers including Amazon, Walmart and Target. Most of the stores quickly sold out due to unprecedented demand for the doll.
As part of the Barbie Tribute Collection Series, which was created to celebrate “visionaries whose incredible contributions have helped shape and impact culture,” Mattel designed a stunning Queen Elizabeth doll to honor Britain’s longest-reigning queen, who is celebrating her 70th year on the throne in 2022.
“The Queen is the perfect addition to the Barbie Tribute collection, intended to honor women whose contributions had a great impact,” Lisa McKnight, Mattel’s Executive Vice President and global head of Barbie and dolls, told USA Today. “We’re proud to celebrate her historic milestone and courage kids to learn more about her legacy.”
The Queen Elizabeth II Barbie wears a gorgeous ivory gown and a royal blue sash that features two Royal Family Order medallions. The blue medallion represents her grandfather, George V, and the pink medallion honors her father, George VI, according to Vanity Fair.
And what’s a queen without her crown? This Queen Elizabeth II Barbie wears the Queen Mary fringe crown, which the monarch wore on her wedding day to Prince Phillip. Queen Elizabeth II graciously loaned the crown to Princess Beatrice for her wedding day in July 2020.
Senior Director of Barbie Design Robert Best, the man in charge of creating the royal doll, said the gown was inspired by a number of the queen’s “iconic looks.”
“The gown is not a copy of any one dress she wears, but rather a gown inspired by the style and color of gown that she’s favored in royal portraits of herself for the past several years,” he explained in a Mattel blog post. “If you look at those portraits or how she dresses for important events, she very much has a signature style and look – always a very simple design in white or ivory, which makes sense given that she must then wear all the accompanying jewelry and sash as befits her rank.”
Best said he has seen the actual Crown Jewels in the Tower of London Museum, which helped him design the crown in miniature form.
In a press statement released by Mattel, historian and author Kate Williams celebrated the creation of the Queen Elizabeth II Barbie doll.
“In 1952, when she came to the throne, women were not encouraged to work and politicians expressed doubts about a young female monarch — but she showed them wrong, proved herself an adept leader and diplomat,” Williams said in the statement shared by USA Today. “As Her Majesty celebrates this milestone jubilee it is wonderful to see an iconic brand like Barbie share important historical female figures’ impact as leaders, creators, and pioneers to new generations.”