Barbie in the Late Sixties
1968 was a time of peace demonstrations, race riots, rock music, and hot fashion. Barbie Doll kept up with the times—her wardrobe consisted of bright colors, bold patterns, and sparkled fabrics, as well as the classic styles she'd always loved.
1968 Saw Many Re-Releases From 1967
In 1968, Barbie added Fashion Pak items and 24 new outfits to her closet. Fourteen of 1967’s releases were also back:
- Bouncy Flouncy (#1805)
- Pajama Pow (#1806)
- Disco Dater (#1807)
- Drizzle Dash (#1808)
- Mini Prints (#1809)
- Bermuda Holidays (#1810)
- Tropicana (#1460)
- Sunflower (#1683)
- Underprints (#1685)
- Print A Plenty (#1686)
- Intrigue (#1470)
- Fashion Shiner (#1691)
- Patio Party (#1692)
- Pink Moonbeams (#1694)
In 1967, Barbie Doll saw facial mold and makeup changes. In 1968, Mattel introduced the Talking Barbie doll line (which included friends Stacey and Christie). Children (and adults!) could pull strings in the dolls’ backs to hear a variety of phrases.
Talking Barbie’s original swimsuit was pink with a yellow braid. Stacey’s two-piece suit was patterned with a variety of colored stripes. Christie wore a green knit top with cerise-colored panties and braided trim on the hem.
Barbie’s New Clothes for 1968
Twist ‘n Turn (#1160): Barbie Doll—her waist twisted to different positions—had several original playsuits or swimsuits. One in particular had a pink knit top (patterned with colored checks), pink vinyl panties and a chartreuse belt.
Twist ‘n Turn (#1165): Stacey’s original outfit was a red one-piece swimsuit that cut out at the waist. The bodice was fashioned with white buttons.
Knit Hit (#1808, 1968–1969): This was a sleeveless knit dress in pastel pink and blue. The blue top had pink and green stitching that crisscrossed over the bodice. The attached shirt was in matching pink. Blue closed-toe pumps came with the dress.
Snug Fuzz (#1813, 1968-–1979): This was a plush hot-pink skirt and matching jacket. The jacket had white piping down the front, at the sleeves and bottom hems. A white vinyl belt went around the waist. A long-sleeved silver-sparkled threaded top, matching hose and silver-gray go-go boots came with outfit.
Sparkle Squares (#1814, 1968–1969): This had a large-checked pattern in glowing pink, yellow or green and shiny silver. The silver spaghetti-strapped dress had a layered organdy skirt and metallic belt that hung below the waist. The matching long coat had organdy lining and a ruffle down the front. Accessories included glittery white hose, a silver clutch purse and soft, white, bow shoes.
Zokko! (#1828, 1968–1969): This outfit was a sleeveless metallic knit dress; the dropped mini-skirt was aqua, and the bodice was fashioned in silver. A silver belt (with an orange stripe) accented the dropped waist. Gray-silver go-go boots with orange cuffs and plastic rectangle-drop earrings completed the look.
Underliners (#1821, 1968–1969): Underliners featured a lacy chemise made in hot-pink with yellow, chartreuse and turquoise floral print tricot. A matching garter belt, nude hose and hot-pink open-toed shoes gave Barbie a special spark.
Swirly Cue (#1968–1069): This was a sleeveless straight-lined mini-dress with ruffled hem—the swirls were bright greens, pinks and blues. The dress came with triangle-drop earrings and hot-pink closed-toe shoes.
Jump Into Lace (#1823, 1968): This outfit consisted of a long pink taffeta pantsuit with white lace overlay—the pink pants had thin legs, and the white lace overlay was ruffled with wide bell-bottomed hems. The outfit included pink open-toed shoes.
Snap Dash (#1824, 1968): This short-length dress of textured fabric was lime-green with elbow-length sleeves and yellow vinyl cuffs (the front was trimmed with the same yellow material). Yellow knee-socks, bow shoes and a matching green felt hat topped off the outfit.
Night Clouds (#1841, 1968): This was a short nightgown of pink, yellow and orange ruffled organdy. The matching long-sleeved, sheer yellow peignoir was adorned with two pink ribbons.
Togetherness (#1842, 1968): The bodice of this sleeveless knit dress had wide pale-blue horizontal stripes with a line of pink and green floral in between each level. The skirt and floral print lines were vertically-striped. Matching (horizontally-striped) hose, a bonnet and hot-pink bow-shoes completed the outfit.
Dancing Stripes (#1843, 1968): This straight-lined horizontally-striped evening dress was held up with magenta-colored metallic spaghetti-straps. The stripes, in shades of purple, pink, rose and pale-pink, were accented with metallic threads. The hem of the dress was ruffled in hot-pink lace. The outfit included a matching coat and hot-pink shoes.
Extravaganza (#1844, 1968): This long, straight-lined, pink evening gown was covered with glitter-spotted tulle and fabric flowers at the hemline. The pink sheath’s halter neckline was trimmed with a hot-pink ruffle and silver braid. Accessories included a silver clutch purse, long pink tricot gloves and silver-glittered open-toed shoes.
Scene Stealers (#1845, 1968): This outfit consisted of a pink satin mini-skirt with three tiers of sheer ruffles edged in green, a sleeveless green top trimmed in pink, and a sheer pink coat with satin trim on the cuffs, collar and down the front. The outfit came with hot-pink closed-toe shoes.
Trailblazers (#1846, 1968): Trailblazers featured corduroy pants with wide vertical stripes—the colors were pink, chartreuse, dark green and orange. A matching jacket had the same colors, but the stripes were horizontal. A yellow graphic-printed t-shirt, green and striped “mod” glasses and ankle boots completed the look.
More 1968 Barbie Fashions
All That Jazz (#1848, 1068–1969): This thin-strapped, one-piece dress featured wide metallic stripes of hot-pink, orange, chartreuse and gold. The pattern on the bodice ran in several directions, the dropped-waist pleated skirt had wide horizontal stripes. The matching coat had wide horizontal stripes and a gold belt. Hose and hot-pink bow shoes came with the outfit.
Wedding Wonder (#1849, 1968–1969): This was a straight-lined, sleeveless wedding gown in white nylon with a satin band and trim at the neckline. The dress was covered by a sheer, dotted and floral-embroidered, tent-like sheath that fell from the shoulders. It was trimmed with white satin down the back. A tulle veil fell from the crown, which was made from the dotted fabric. Accessories included a velvet flower bouquet and closed-toe shoes.
Now Wow! (#1853, 1968–1969): This outfit consisted of a soft corduroy long-sleeved mini-dress—the pale-blue bodice and top waist were trimmed in chartreuse (the same color used to create the braided, scalloped skirt). A matching bonnet, pale-blue hose and blue boots with chartreuse trim finished the set.
Twinkle Togs (#1854, 1968–1969): This included a sleeveless mini dress with a turquoise metallic bodice and yellow-green skirt with a sheer overskirt. The overskirt had colored, horizontal metallic stripes. Glittery chartreuse hose and turquoise shoes completed the outfit.
Team Ups (#1855, 1968–1969): Team Ups featured a double-breasted, fuchsia-pink, long-sleeved jacket with four gold buttons at the bottom, it fit over a sleeveless one-piece dress—the skirt matched the jacket but the long-waisted knitted bodice had wide and thin horizontal stripes of yellow, fuchsia and green. The dress had a gold belt that went around the waist. Hot-pink closed-toe shoes were included.
Wild ‘n Wonderful (#1856, 1968–1969): This was a multi-colored, geometric-patterned mini-skirt in hot-pink, orange, turquoise, green and chartreuse. A sleeveless high-collared blouse matched the skirt. Plastic orange panties and knee-high orange cut-out sandals came in the package.
Dreamy Pink (#1857, 1968–1969): Dreamy Pink was a hot-pink tricot-lined nightgown with lace straps. The matching robe and overlay of the gown were made from sheer ruffled nylon. The package also contained pink “booty” slippers.
Fancy Dancy (#1858, 1968–1969): This sleeveless one-piece dress had a long, fuchsia lace-trimmed bodice. The flared skirt was chartreuse. The long-sleeved chartreuse jacket had pink lace ruffles down the front, at the cuffs and around the neckline. Accessories included sheer hose with floral print flocking and pink bow shoes.
Tunic ‘n Tights (#1859, 1968–1969): This was a long-sleeved turtleneck top patterned with bright yellow and hot-pink horizontal stripes on the bodice and vertical ones on the arms. Matching (horizontally-striped) tights, vinyl yellow shorts, scoop-necked tunic and yellow go-go boots gave Barbie that “mod” look.
Smasheroo (#1860, 1968–1969): This long-sleeved shirt-dress was red with spaced-out vertical stripes of yellow, purple and black. Gold buttons adorned the bodice and a gold chain belt fit around the waist. The accompanying wide, furry jacket was yellow with lining that matched the dress. A plush yellow hat, patterned hose and tall red boots completed the outfit.
Other 1968 Pieces
Mattel’s designers created clothing pieces and accessories as samples for upcoming production. Some of the items were made with mismatched materials, and others were created with fabrics that would actually be used. Many of the designs and fabrics were used to produce the outfits hanging in Barbie Doll’s closet; some were used for Skipper, Francie and Julia. Some were used in Barbie Doll gift sets and Fashion Paks.
Sears and J.C. Penney Exclusive Gift Sets
Sears and J.C. Penney department stores, in conjunction with Mattel, released several Barbie gift sets in 1968.
Travel in Style (Sears, #1544) included a standard, straight-legged Barbie doll in her two-piece hot-pink swimsuit. The outfit consisted of a sleeveless navy/royal-blue shell, aqua-colored mini skirt with bright-green floral print and green waistband. The accompanying flared jacket was the same material as the skirt. Accessories included dark-blue hose, bow shoes and a round, plastic suitcase/hatbox.