Have a Question? Check out some of the questions and answers below!
I am sorry, but I am unable to answer questions at this time. I am also unable to give value estimates on your dolls and clothing.
Here are some questions I've received in the past:
Q: I have a blond Barbie doll, on her behind it says 1958 Korea. Could you tell me anything about her or what she might be worth? She is not in a box or in mint condition. But she still looks pretty good.
A: Thanks for your email. Generally, the Barbies that have the most collector value were made in Japan and are labeled as such. A Barbie made in Korea may be from the mid- to late-70's. Without her original clothing and being in played with condition, her value is probably $10 or less, but without seeing the doll, I am only guessing. For a more accurate appraisal, I recommend taking her to a doll show or doll shop and asking a dealer for his/her opinion. Good luck!
Q: How do I go about finding the value of a 1959 Basic Barbie set in box. It is flesh- tone vinyl plastic with black/white striped jersey swimsuit, sun glasses, pearl earrings and shoes.
A: Thanks for your email. The best way to find out the value of your doll is to take her or send her to a Barbie expert for appraisal. If you live in or near a big city, there may be a doll shop or doll shows in your area. If you'd like a recommendation of a dealer you can take her to, just let me know where you live. If you don't live near an expert, you can always send pictures of your dolls to someone. I'd be happy to look at pictures to give you a ballpark value, if you'd like.
You can also research your doll in Barbie books, but it is difficult to determine the true market value based on prices in books. Usually, they are way too high because they are pricing the dolls as if they have never been touched in any way. It is useful, though, to compare your doll to the pictures in the books so that you know exactly what you have.
Good luck and please let me know if I can be of any assistance.
Q: Happy New Year, maybe you could help me with my X-mas present. I recieved a (not real gold) gold necklace that is barbie sunglasses. The only info I can find in the box is the cert. that ...you have purchased blah, blah, blah licensed Barbie product by Michael Anthony. It's in its orginal black velvet box with the barbie logo in pink inside. I've checked my books just can't seem to find anything. There is also a barbie logo on the necklace clasp.
A: Thanks for your note. What a nice Christmas present! The Michael Anthony jewelry based on Barbie symbols was issued a few years ago (probably for Barbie's 35th Anniversary in 1994, if I remember right). There were many items in the line, including your sunglasses necklace, plus shoe necklaces, a Barbie heart-shaped charm, and a Barbie charm bracelet. They were packaged in black velvet jewelry boxes and were marked with Barbie charms near the clasps, where appropriate. They are not seen too often anymore--I think most people who have them are hanging onto them! Enjoy!!
Q: I wondered if you could you tell me what the term "high color" means as it relates to vintage Barbie dolls?
A: Thanks for your email. High color means a doll with cheek blush and geranium or red lips, typically on American Girls, Fashion Queens, and Color Magic Barbies. Dolls without high color will typically not have blush and will have coral or pale lips.
Q: I am looking to sell a NBA Bulls Barbie Autographed by Michael Jordan. It is NMNRFB. Do you have any idea what the value of this item might be and where I could look to sell it? (besides EBAY) I have been told it is worthless because no one keeps the box, but because this is a one of a kind item I find that hard to believe. I appreciate any advice you may have. Thank you!
A: Thanks for your message. Ebay is probably your best bet in selling this doll. While she sounds wonderful, I would think that sports collectors are probably a bigger market for her than doll collectors. You might try taking her to a sports memorabilia store to see if they have any interest, also.
Q: I have two different newer Skippers and both have spots on their legs. I purchased one of them at a Thrift Shop so I am not sure what caused the spots as described below:
1978 Jewel Secrets Skipper has whitish spots on her legs only.
1987 Teen Romance Skipper has orange spots on her legs only. Both dolls have a tan colored skin tone as opposed to pink. Have you heard or seen this problem? And is there a way to restore them? Otherwise they are in very good condition.
A: Thanks for your note. Unfortunately, spots are not uncommon in some dolls, including the Jewel Secrets series. I hadn't heard of the problem with the Teen Romance doll, but it is very possible to be common in that one, too. As for the cause, some batches of vinyl apparently were not very stable and they faded. I don't know of any way to remove the spots and restore the original color. Sorry!
Q: I have been buying barbie dolls for my daughters for the past fifteen years, but I find that I really don't know what to look for in dolls that will make them desirable to collectors. As an example, I found that some of the presidential barbies had the top buttons of their blouses undone showing an awful lot of cleavage. There were an equal number that were buttoned, which should I have bought? The buttons open were surely a mistake but is that a reason to buy or a reason not to buy those that were unbuttoned? Hope that you can tell me things to look for when buying so that I can shop for the best barbies to collect. Thanks for any help you can give me.
A: Thanks for your email. These days, I find that most collectors don't care too much about minor variations in current dolls, such as the buttoning of the presidential dolls. Generally, they want the prettiest dolls in the most perfect condition--nice hair, jewelry hanging properly, clothes fitting properly, nice box, etc. The first doll in a series tends to be more collectible than later issues, as are store exclusives, such as dolls made especially for Target or FAO Schwarz. So many dolls are made in large quantities these days, however, that it is difficult to find dolls that will rise in value. Because of this, the best advice is to buy things that the recipient will like, rather than looking for the rarest or variation dolls.
Q: I recently found all of my old remaining Barbies dolls in a trunk. (At one time I had them all!) I believe all of these dolls date to the early 1960's. My original Barbie, was a blonde PT one, but my mother took it and sent it in during a Barbie Exchange program they had at some point in time, and we received back a "new" Barbie, with mid length ash blonde hair and real eyelashes- though I always mourned the loss of my PT Barbie.
But to the point. These dolls all stored in a trunk, now smell musty and moldy. Is there any thing I can do to get rid of the smell. Airing them out hasn't seemed to work. I have Bubble head Barbie, the eyelash Barbie mentioned above, Midge, Skipper, Scooter, and Ricky dolls. Ricky has molded hair so he shouldn't be a problem, but the other's all have "real" hair. I also have the grey poodle dog and he smells as well.
A: Thanks for your email. Getting odors out of dolls and clothing can be tricky, but there are a few things to try. Here are different methods that people have recommended over the years:
Put everything in the sun for a while to air it out (not recommended for fragile fabrics)
Put everything in plastic containers and put dryer sheets (like Bounce) in with the items
Put everything in plastic containers that contain crumpled up newspaper (you have to protect the items from the newsprint, perhaps with a layer of clean paper)
Put everything in plastic containers with kitty litter
Everyone has their favorite method. Mine happens to be the dryer sheet method. It doesn't always get out everything, but the dolls smell better, at least. Hope this helps!
Q: I want to complete my Beautiful Blues outfit and I was wondering if the shoes were exclusive to this outfit, or can other shoes from some 1600 series outfits complete this outfit, such as Reception Line?
A: The blue pumps that came with Beautiful Blues also came with Twinkle Togs outfit, the Change-Abouts pak, and the JCPenney Shoe Bag (the one that has the acid green, yellow, etc., pumps). By the way, Reception Line came with white closed-toe shoes, despite what has been printed in some reference books and price guides. Good luck in your search!
Old questions you may still find interesting:
Q: I am a novice barbie collector and want to know if I should remove barbie from her boxes and put her in acid free tissue paper and containers? I would keep the original box, but what about time and destruction of the barbie by the typical packaging? What is the thinking in the collecting world?
A: Thanks for your note. I'm not aware of problems with leaving Barbie in her box, but acid free paper couldn't hurt. Often I see damage to outfits still in the box, but it's usually due to moisture and mildew. I've heard of people storing outfits in acid free tissue, but there hasn't been any discussion of dolls that I'm aware of.
Q: I have a stack of Barbie clothes from the 70's. The only tag on the clothes is made in Hong Kong. How can I further identify these pieces?
A: Usually Barbie clothes with Hong Kong tags are what collector's call "clone" clothes. Mattel, Barbie's manufacturer, historically manufactured in Japan, Korea, and The Phillipines. Clothes made anywhere else than Japan are difficult to identify since they typically aren't documented in reference books. Good luck in your search!
Q: I am not a very avid collector but I was in the Goodwill store in NC and I found a 1961 Bubble hair barbie not in great condition and a Ken doll with fuzzy hair. It is not in the box but comes in the Barbie carrying case with 1961 on it. There are also some clothes and shoes and booklets in the case is $100 a good price for all? Please let me know as soon as posible either e mail or call me.
A: I'm sorry, but I can't help you with the value of this collection. Both identification and condition are important in determining the value of Barbie and her clothes and accessories. Without knowing exactly what items are in the collection and exactly what condition they are in, I can't even make a guess as to what things are worth. Good wishes for successful shopping!
Q: We have 2 1970 Living Barbie NRFB. Found them in a chest from an inheritance. Can you give advice on how to sell? We have no experience in this area.
A: There are a couple of ways you might try selling your dolls. If you have access to a digital camera, you could post them on Ebay. This is typically a great forum for selling dolls. Alternately, you could sell them to a collector or a doll dealer in your area. Check the yellow pages for people who buy Barbies--if you live anywhere near a bigger city, you'll probably find someone. Finally, you can email pictures to dealers and collectors you find on the internet (like me!) and see if they are interested. Good luck!
Q: All of the 1971 Blonde Living Barbie dolls I see on ebay or collector's sites have a metallic swimsuit with orange cover up. Mine has a polka dotted suit with a matching wrap skirt. I know it is the original as I've had the doll since I was a little girl. Why can't I find any others like it?
A: Your doll is original with the polka dotted outfit. It was issued after the one in the metallic swimsuit and it was called "Dramatic New Living Barbie." She is more difficult to find than the regular Living Barbie, so enjoy knowing you have something a bit more special!
Q: Do you know how much an MIB 1988 Holiday barbie is worth?
A: Without seeing your doll, it is difficult to give you a precise value. Value depends upon both identification and condition. For a rough idea, however, Miller's Price Guide lists the 1988 doll as worth between $450 and $800 in never removed from box condition, with an average of $625.
Q: I am writing to you to ask if you would happen to know the original selling price of the first barbie doll ever sold? I would really appreciate the
help because it is for a school project. Thanks.
A: The first Barbie ever sold was listed for $3.00 retail in the catalog. Good luck with your school project.
Q: My sister-in-law just started collecting vintage Barbies and clothes a few months ago. It was fun to see what she had found, and got me thinking about when I was a youngster in the early sixties and drooled for months for a huge Barbie kitchen set that included a table w/6chairs, and separate pieces(that all functioned in some way) a stove with light up range, and rotisserie that moved around, a dishwasher that actually had water that ran through it, a sink with running water, a refrigerator with dozens of 'food' items, and I believe another piece or two? hundreds of pieces of dishes, boxed foods etc. I can't really remember. Nooo, I don't have it any longer, but curious as to any info you might be able to come up with, and price. I can't guarantee that it was made from Mattel, but definitely made to be played with Barbies. Thanks for any help you might have.
A: I suspect that the play set you described is the Deluxe Reading Kitchen. It was not made by Mattel, but goes beautifully with Barbie and is a lot of fun to play with and to make displays. They show up on Ebay all the time and usually go for $200 and up in mint condition.
Q: I found 2 barbies at a junk sale. They are both marked 1966. One is marked "Mattel 1966 Taiwan" has olive skin, black hair, a flowered top with pink trim and a deep blue apron trimmed with red. She has no skirt and twists at the waist .Do you have a skirt and shoes I could buy? >>
The other Barbie is marked " Mattel Inc. 1966" , blonde and wearing a lolly pink and flowered dance outfit. She is very pretty with blue eye shadow and twists at the waist. I would like to buy shoes for her too.
A: Although I can't be certain, I think that the first doll you found is the first Italian Barbie from the Dolls of the World series. While the blouse doesn't match, the apron and description of the doll does. If you can find a book of Barbies at the library or bookstore, you can look her up to be certain. I'm sorry, but I don't have a skirt or shoes for this doll. It is best that you confirm which doll it is before you shop for spare parts, just to make sure that you get the right ones.
The second one is tougher to identify and I'm afraid I can't tell from the description who she is. Nearly all of the dolls produced since 1966 are marked with that date, so that doesn't help, unfortunately. Your best best, again, is to find a Barbie book and try to match her with the pictures. One of the best books is by Marcie Melillo and is titled The Ultimate Barbie Doll Book.
Q: Hello, I was wondering if you could help me understand why my old (excuse me, vintage) Barbie wigs are stuck to their stands after being in storage for decades. Is there a method for safe removal?
A: For some reason, the vinyl of the wig cap reacts with and melts the hard plastic of the stand. The only way I know of getting them loose is to pry them off very carefully. (Often, some hair is lost in this process.) Once you have them off, I recommend covering the head parts of the wigstand with tissue paper to make a barrier between the wigs and the stands. Good luck!
Q: I am looking for a picture of a barbie that my mom had-her first. She's 45, so I assume it would be a vintage doll. We found a dress (in my size) that she says looks exactly like the dress her doll wore. It had brown hair, I think short, but there was also a blond ponytailed version. She wore little black shoes and this dress (the one I have the she says looks like it) is black on top, with an off the shoulder. The off the sholder is a band of fabric that goes all the way around, as opposed to just off the shoulder sleeves. The bodice is otherwise fitted to the waist. The skirt portion is black and white striped, The length goes to about the knee. If you know this doll or where I can find a picture that would be great!
A: I'm sorry, but it's difficult to say what your Mom's doll was from the description. It may have been a Bubble Cut barbie or an American Girl. The dress is not familiar to me. You might want to look in a Barbie reference book and see if any of the pictures match her memory. A good book for dolls is by Marcie Melillo. A good book for the older outfits is by Sarah Eames. You might be able to find the books at Barnes and Noble, or a similar large bookstore, or your library. If you're looking for a place to buy Barbie books online, I recommend my friend Joe's website at http://www.joeslist.com.
Q: I was wondering if you ever saw Gay Parisienne NRFB? If so, could you tell me if the box has a red and white strip around the frame.
A: Gay Parisienne comes in a pink and white striped frame, just like all of the other original outfits.
Q: I have a question maybe you can help.I was given a Barbie Bracelet from the 1994 Orlando Disneyworld festival put out by Mattel. This is in mint condition and was this item given away to those who attended? or was it purchased for that event??? Also I was told this goes for around 60.00 is this true?
A: The bracelet you have was sold at the 1994 Festival at Disneyworld. Here's the description from the Festival catalog:
"Your favorite nostalgic Barbie accessories have been reproduced as charms in 14 carat gold-over-sterling silver. As a special memento a 35th Anniversary charm has been added and sequentially numbered from 1 to 350. By Michael Anthony. $150."
I don't know what the bracelet would sell for today. Items like this are so limited and have a fairly small market, so it can be anything from substantially more to substantially less than the original price. Enjoy!
Q: My girlfriend has confessed to an unfulfilled childhood desire for a "Malibu Barbie Dream House." I have searched through web auctions offering a plethora of "dream houses" but no "Malibu" version. Was there ever a specific "Malibu" edition? I have considered trying to hunt down a vintage version from the seventies (she grew up in that decade) but I do not know what to look for (the only specifics that she could offer was that it was about three feet high and had "everything"). Another option would be to purchase the current 2000 "Dream House" edition if it is similar enough to the versions produced in the seventies. Any advice or direction that you could provide would be most appreciated.
A: I'm afraid I don't know of any official Malibu Barbie houses, although there were a couple of Barbie houses out at that time. There were two basic styles you could look for--a townhouse, which had three stories, and a flatter style which had two stories on one side and one on the other. Usually the best source for these kinds of structures is flea markets. Most doll dealers don't carry them because they are large and not very high priced for the space they take up. So, I would recommend you check out some flea markets or swap meets and keep your eyes open for them there. Good luck in your search!
Q: I have done a little research, not much, but have a couple of questions for you. I have recently found my Doll collection from my childhood. Two bubble Barbies. One appears to be blonde, yet is more golden now, and one a brunette with the full red lips. Two Kens from same era, painted hair, red/white striped bathing jacket and red shorts, some clothing and accessory's, e.g., tennis racket, a State pennant, etc... My question #1 is.. What does the number on the right butt check represent? My blonde has a number 7 and the Brunette has a 2 ? I know these are vintage yet can't clearly make out the Roman numerals. Is that the mold number and does it affect the value of such dolls? My #2 question is this.. I understand that the first PT's came in the black and white striped swimsuit, but I have these as well. Did the Bubble Cut Doll originally come outfitted with these as well as the white sunglasses with blue lenses? I also have an assortment of shoes, white,yellow, blue,black, opened toed and closed. Did any of these accessories, come with my dolls? I plan on getting a book soon, but not sure if I have anything worth anything to bother with. Thank you in advance for your time and helpfulness.
A: Congratulations on finding your childhood dolls. So many people have lost theirs as they grew up, you are very fortunate to have yours.
<< My question #1 is.. What does the number on the right butt check represent? My blonde has a number 7 and the Brunette has a 2 ? I know these are vintage yet can't clearly make out the Roman numerals. Is that the mold number and does it effect the value of such dolls? >>
The single number is most likely the mold cavity number. I don't believe that has ever been confirmed by Mattel, but it makes sense and would be typical for a plastic molded part. The Roman numerals probably say 1958, which is the year that the first body style was patented. The mold number does not affect the value of the doll. The body style does affect the value, in that some body styles are more valuable than others.
<< My #2 question is this.. I understand that the first PT's came in the black and white striped swimsuit, but I have these as well. Did the Bubble Cut Doll originally come outfitted with these as well as the white sunglasses with blue lenses. I also have an assortment of shoes, white,yellow, blue,black, opened toed and closed. Did any of these accessories come with my dolls? >>
Yes, the original PT's and the first bubbles (the ones with the 1958 bodies) came with black and white swimsuits, white sunglasses with blue lenses, and black open-toed high heel shoes. The bubbles would also have come with pearl stud earrings, but it is best to have lost them years ago because the metal in the posts reacts with the doll's vinyl and causes the vinyl to turn green.
<< I plan on getting a book soon, but not sure if I have anything worth anything to bother with. >>
For Barbie identification, I recommend Marcie Melillo's, The Ultimate Barbie Doll Book, or Sibyl DeWein's Encyclopedia of Barbie Dolls and Collectibles. For values once you have identified what you have, I recommend Miller's Price Guide. All of these publications are available at bookstores or online at www.joeslist.com. When valuing your dolls, remember that identification, condition, and completeness all figure into the value.
Q: Hi, have really been enjoying your question&answer page. I guess the 1972 Wards Barbie is marked just the same as the Barbie/Midge 60s body? Can you tell these dolls apart? Also, do you know what substance people are using to repair nose nips and scratches on vintage Barbie faces? Thank you very much!
Just thought of my other question. Where are people buying these reproduction vintage Barbie OT shoes??
A: Thanks for your note. The easiest way to tell a Wards Barbie from the early ponytails is that her eyebrows are really high. She looks "perpetually surprised," as my friend Joe Blitman says. She also does not have even a trace of nail polish.
Sorry, but I don't know what people are using to repair nose nips. I've never tried to do it, so I don't know.
The reproduction open-toe shoes were sold in a pak about five years ago. They still show up on Ebay from time to time and generally go for $20 and up.
Q: In many of the items advertised for auction or sale there appears to be a rating system describing the condition of the doll or accessories. What exactly does this C-9, C-10, etc. mean? Could you translate this for us novices? I did look in Millers and Barbie Bazaar, but I can't find anything definitive to guide me on this. Any help would be appreciated!
A: The late John Nunes' Valley of the Dolls website had a web page that defines these terms (you can find it at: http://www.valleyofthedolls.com/help/c10.htm). I don't believe the site is maintained any longer, but the grading scale is very useful.
In case you can't get to the website, here's what it says:
C-10 GRADING SCALE
C-10: Pristine (We almost never rate any out-of-box item C-10). Items are without flaws and appear new, regardless of age.
C-9: Quality is close to factory mint condition or "near-mint."
C-8: Display quality is quite high; items were gently played with and well cared for.
C-7: Still display quality but with some visible wear.
C-6: Definite signs of play; probably in need of restoration.
C-5: Heavily played with; may have visible damage or flaws and need repair
C-4: Heavily damaged but possibly could be repaired.
C-3: Almost beyond repair; possibly still of use for display.
C-2: Major damage which cannot be repaired; may be of some use as parts.
C-1: One or two parts may be of some use (such as an otherwise trashed doll with one good arm).
Hope this helps. Happy collecting!
Q: I have been searching for a long time trying to find zippers, buttons, snaps, etc. that are truly Barbie-size. I design wonderful clothing for my Barbies, not to sell, just for my own pleasure. I have not run across anyone who will share their secret sources with me, but I know they are out there. Do you know of any? Thanks for your help!
A: The best place to find Barbie-size notions might be on Ebay, where you can look for vintage paks of buttons and zippers. Mattel sold these paks back in the '60's and you can usually get them for $15-20 per pak. Each one typically has two zippers and eight different kinds of buttons. They also made them for Francie/Casey, and those are the same size notions, just a little later (late '60's). Good luck!
Q: I have an early edition barbie and I've been trying to find out who she is. She has the brunette pony tail. On her right butt cheek it says "Midge and Barbie 1968 by Mattel" and on her left side it says "84". Her eyes look off to the left. She has blue eye shadow and pink nail polish on toes and fingers. Do you know who she is?
A: I'm sorry, but the information you've given me isn't enough for me to know what doll you have. You might check Marcie Melillo's book, The Ultimate Barbie Doll Book. Or, if you have a scan or digital picture of her, please send it to me and I'll see if I can identify her from that.
Q: I have an old doll..Midge..with signature on the butt. she has brown painted on hair and blue eye shadow..could you tell me alittle about her?
A: Thanks for your note. It sounds like you have a Fashion Queen Barbie from 1963. She was sold with three wigs and originally wore a gold and white striped swimsuit and turban, with a blue band around her plastic hair. Generally, the Fashion Queen has survived the years better than the dolls with hair, so there are more of them around than the early ponytails. Because of this, her value tends to be a bit lower, usually around $75-$100 or so without clothes or wigs, if she is in really nice condition.
Q: Can you please tell me where I can purchase the following Barbie dolls: 1981 Western barbie, 1982 Pink & Pretty Barbie, 1983 Twirly Curls, Dream Date & Angel Face Barbies?
I have been looking everywhere and would really like to find them it would mean a lot to me to have them again. Thank you.
A: Thanks for your email. I'm afraid I don't know places that have these doll available for sure, but you might try some of the very large Barbie dealers who get new inventory all the time. My recommendations are:
Good luck in your search!
Q: I am hoping you can help. Do you know where I can get vintage or re-pro's or replacement hair accessories for recreating the hair styles of the PT Barbie? Such things as elastic bands, barrettes, and hair pins used to secure the ponytails to the Barbie heads? Also ribbon in the colors that went with the dolls. I am a hair stylist by trade and was asked if I could reproduce the styles on some PT's for a Client of mine that collects Vintage Barbie. From pictures she supplied of the Dolls I was able to recreate the hair styles for her Swirls and curly bang PT's but had to improvise some of the accessories I needed to do this and I have been looking for somewhere that these items can be found. Since doing this I not only found that I had a real talent for it but had a lot of fun recreating these fun hair-do's and even started to collect Vintage Barbie myself. Hope you can help.
A: Welcome to collecting and restyling Barbie! It's fun, isn't it?
There are two things I can recommend for replacement hair accessories. For rubberbands for the ponytails, use dental/orthodontic rubber bands, like the ones that are used with braces. You can usually get them from a dentist's office for free or a nominal fee. For ribbons, check a craft store like Michael's and look for very thin silk ribbon. I have found gold, red, and turquoise ribbons, which are all used with Barbie.
Q: Hello I am writing you with the rare hope that you may be able to help me find a barbie that I played with as a little girl.The first problem I have is that I can not remember her name! She was named Gold something..??? She has a gold almost wire like substance in her hair that aided you in using the curling iron that came with her. As most little girls the most important part of my barbies was that long beautiful hair! If you could just email me her name I could be on my way to a long awaited reunion! Thanks so much!
A: It sounds like you are looking for a Quick Curl Barbie from the early '70's. She came in a pink and white checked dress with a white shawl, if I remember correctly. Does this sound like her?
Q: How do I know the difference between original OT vintage Barbie shoes and repros? I can't tell the difference and I want to buy the original. Some ads say one shoes is marked 'Japan'. Does it matter which one? I appreciate the insight. Thank you.
A: Once you have seen both the old and the new shoes, it gets to be pretty easy to tell the difference. If you don't have them in front of you, however, it can be trickier.
The new shoes are rubbery and more flexible that the old ones. The old ones are hard plastic and only "give" a little. The new shoes have a mark on the sole, under the instep, that says L1, L2, etc., or R1, R2, etc. This indicates right or left shoes and the number is probably the mold number, although I am guess on that. The old shoes are marked with Japan on the sold of the left shoe and nothing on the right one.
Hope this helps!
Q: What are the most important things to look for in the older dolls ? Do all of them have the patent on their but or just certain years ? Where do you find the year of the doll ?
A: Condition is the most important thing, once you know it's an older doll. You need to know the body markings as well as be familiar with the description of the doll in order to make positive identification. Marcie Melillo's book, The Ultimate Barbie Doll Book, is the best source for identification.
Q: What do you look for in the 1998 Holiday Barbie ? Is $100 a good purchase price ? Same for the 1994, is $175 a good purchase price ?
A: Again, condition is the most important. With recent dolls, it is the condition of the doll and the box that will determine the price. I'm not very familiar with prices of newer dolls, so I can't comment on the prices you are suggesting. You might check Miller's Price Guide to see what they recommend.
Q: Are older Ken dolls with painted hair worth much ? Is $49 a good price for the brunette, what about the blonde ?
A: $49 would be a bargain for an older Ken doll in mint condition.
Q: Is $175 a good purchase price for a Bubble Cut ? Not sure what the year is, how do I tell ?
A: $175 is a good price for a Bubble Cut in mint condition. Again, I suggest Marcie's book for identification. There is also a good identification guide for older Barbies in the front of Miller's Price Guide.
Q: What Barbies has Avon produced ? What are their values ?
A: Again, please check Miller's for a list and prices.
Q: How do you determine the value of these items ? The most recent book I have for listing values is The Barbie Doll Years, 3rd edition, is this book accurate in it's values ? Is there a more recent book available ?
A: I don't recommend the book you mention. Some of the prices are good, some are way off. Again, I recommend Miller's. You can buy it from Joe Blitman at www.joeslist.com.
Q: How much is the 40th Anniversary & the Millennium Barbies worth now ?
A: They are worth pretty much the original retail price. There were a lot of 40th Anniversaries made and there seem to be more Millenniums hitting the market right now.
Q: I have Barbie Goes to college, complete with all furniture, in excellent shape, what would that be worth ? Also Ken's Hot Rod, blue & red.
A: Again, please check Miller's.
Q: What are the new Barbie's that should be purchased that will be worth money later. What do you look for to determine if it will be valuable later?
A: It is impossible to determine this without a crystal ball. Usually the first doll in a new series is good, but even that can't be relied upon. These days, it's just luck if you pick a good one.
Q: What other websites are available that have Barbie items ?
A: You're welcome to check my site at www.nrfbqueen.com or Joe's at joeslist.com. We both have pages of links that will guide you to other sites.
Q: If I want to sell Barbie on the Internet, what website would I go into?
A: I recommend Ebay for selling on the Internet, otherwise develop and advertise a website of your own.
Q: I have mysteriously found myself collecting Barbie horses, and I haven't been able to find a comprehensive guidebook. Have you come across a book that is good for identifying the Barbie horses throughout the years?
A: The horses are great, and I have a few in my own collection, so I know what you are enjoying. The best book I have found for horses is by Rebecca Ann Rupp and is called Barbie Doll Treasures 1959-97. Chapter 5 is all about horses and has a list of them as well as pictures of them.
Q: I am working on a project at design college on famous logos of the 20th century. I need to know when the BarbieTM logo was introduced (the version with the drop shadow and the whoosh on the capital "B").
A: The Barbie logo with the curl on the bottom of the B and shadow was introduced in 1976. The reference for this information is p. 105, The Collector's Encyclopedia of Barbie Dolls and Collectibles, Sibyl DeWein and Joan Ashabraner. This is a great book for information on Barbie's history.
Q: I was wondering if the Japanese version of "Theatre Date" came with a hat?
A: As documented in a variety of Barbie references, the Japanese Theatre Date did not come with a hat. I'm not aware of anyone having this outfit NRFB or NRFC (and if you do and want to sell it, please call me!), so it's difficult to say exactly what came with it. But, since no one seems to have seen a hat, I think it's safe to say that it didn't come with one.
Q: I am a true novice at Barbie collecting. I would appreciate any help you can give me in identifying this doll. Back of head says "Mattel, Inc. 1976". She is in great shape with very blonde hair and blue-lined eyes. Her waist swivels and her legs have some sort of hidden joints at the knees. Her feet are arched and the bottom of them have little rectangular holes in them. She is wearing a black satin evening gown imprinted with red, blue and gold design. Also, a gold jacket with fur trim, gold earrings, ring, and necklace. She has a furry hair decoration with a gold bow on it. She has no underwear or shoes. Please E-Mail any info you may have.Thanks!
A: Thanks for your email. While it is extremely difficult to identify the newer Barbies without seeing them, my guess is that you have a 1993 Golden Winter Barbie. This was a store exclusive for J.C.Penney. I suggest that you check out one of the many books on store exclusives or current Barbies (J. Michael Augustyniak's Barbie Doll Exclusives or Marcie Melillo's Ultimate Barbie Book are both good ones) to see if I've guessed right. Good luck!
Q: What books go with Barbie's European outfit, "Sorbonne"?
A: English, Geography, and the hard-to-find Art book go with this outfit. It also comes with two pencils, two shiny bookstraps, and brown-framed sunglasses. The Art book can sometimes be found with Skipper's "Hearts and Flowers" outfit from the Mod era. Good luck!
Q: I recently bought a near mint box to the Barbie Mix and Match Giftset # 861. It has the original cardboard inside, that the outfits were sewn to. Can you tell me where I can find one pictured, and exactly what items were inside it?
A: What a great find! Congratulations! There is a picture of the Mix'n Match Gift Set #861 in the Barbie Bazaar Special Edition II book of catalog reprints on p. 77. There is also a listing of the items, which is helpful in case you can't tell the colors from the picture. Since the items all appear to be pak pieces, it shouldn't be too hard to put together a mint set. Good luck and have fun!
Q: Have you ever heard of a TNT (Twist 'N Turn) with blue eyeshadow?
A: Yes, this doll goes with the Beautiful Blues gift set. Lucky is the person who finds one of these rarities!
Q: I just bought a shoebox full of vintage odds and ends, which included a pair of boots that are red. They are described in Eames' Mod book as "tall cerise boots" in the J.C. Penney Shoe Bag and Walking Pretty shoe pak. The same mold was used in orange in Made for Each Other. Did the red boots ever appear in an outfit?
A: Yes, the red riding boots came with the cool Mod outfit Smasheroo. By the way, the cerise ones also came with Francie's Culotte-Wot? and the orange ones came with Francie's Furry Go Round.
Q: I recently purchased three different Barbie Dream House accessory sets from 1981. These are called "Finishing Touches" and they include the Bedroom, Kitchen, and Living Room accessories. They are mint on cards. What are they worth?
A: These sets are listed in Treasury of Barbie Doll Accessories 1961-1995 by Rebecca Ann Rupp as being worth $12 each. This is he only price guide I'm aware of that lists them and the value does correlate with my own experience. They are cute sets and make a nice addition to the Dream House and dolls of that era. Enjoy!
Q: What do yellow closed toe pumps go with?
A: Yellow closed toe pumps are from a Penny's Shoe Pak. They never came with any outfits and they are quite rare. You're lucky if you have them!
Q: Which of the box variations on the 1997 Happy Holiday Barbie will be worth more in the future?
A: Actually, it's hard to imagine that any of the variations will be worth more than the others in the long term. Right now it seems that the gold background with the blue eyes on the back panel of the box has a slight edge, but so many of each variation are being produced that none of them are likely to be scarce in the future.