January 13th marks a new chapter in the history of fashion: Balmain X Barbie is an epic collab launching today. Filled with pink tones, synonymous with Barbie’s brand, Balmain came up with the most desirable pieces ever. A collection to die for!
A giant’s meeting: Balmain, the legendary 75-year French Maison, launches today a limited-edition capsule collection in collaboration with Mattel’s beloved doll, Barbie. Envisioned by Olivier Rousteing, the extremely talented Creative Director in charge of Balmain for the past decade, the Balmain X Barbie collection embodies over 70 items, including clothing, accessories, and virtual tokens.
For this collab, Rousteing presented some of the Maison’s signature looks with a twist – including Balmain’s iconic Labyrinth and marinière patterns -, as well as three exclusive auctionable NFTs that come with mini Balmain looks for Barbie dolls. The colour palette selected for this special line is mainly composed of Barbie’s pink shades, evolving from the softest blushes to stronger tones. Also fascinated by Barbie’s iconography, Olivier came up with badges, tees, and hoodies using the same bold graphic font immediately attributed to the doll. The accessories in this collection are “inventive hybrids of Balmain’s signature bags and Barbie packaging.
Getting into the line’s mood, Olivier even turned himself into a Barbie doll, alongside his uniformized Balmain Barbie Army. According to him, “Barbie and Balmain are embarking upon a distinctly multicultural, inclusive and always joy-filled adventure”. Moreover, Rousteing stated that “this collection also rejects any arbitrary gender limitations – this is an almost 100% unisex collection”. In the words of Richard Dickson, Mattel’s President and Chief Operating Officer, “together Barbie and Balmain are creating a new chapter in the legacy of the toy and fashion industries”.
The latest Barbie collaboration with Balmain is far from being Mattel’s first move into the fashion industry. As part of an ongoing marketing strategy, Mattel has partnered up with several other fashion brands in the past years. In 2021, a Zara X Barbie collection was introduced, featuring athleisure wear pieces such as hoodies, track pants, t-shirts, shorts, and swimming suits. In 2019, Brazilian retailer Riachuelo and Alexandre Herchcovitch’s fashion house À La Garçonne collaborated with Barbie to create a line focused on inclusivity, diversity, and representativity. In 2018, the most fashionable doll teamed up with Puma to develop a collection of shoes and workout apparel. In 2015, Moschino presented a Spring/Summer fashion line with garments inspired by Barbie’s world as well as a Barbie doll in a Moschino outfit. In 2014, Mattel launched a Barbie inspired by the fashion legend Karl Lagerfeld. In 2013, Coach designed an exclusive Barbie doll wearing miniature clothes and accessories from the American brand’s Spring/Summer collection, and all 13 thousand of them were completely sold out in only 7 days.
Published by HOLR Magazine.