In July 2008, Vogue Italia released one of the most inspirational publications relating to the importance of diversity in fashion ,the Black Issue, featuring seasoned models Iman, Namoi Campbell, Liya Kebede, and the fresh faced Sessilee Lopez and Jourdan Dunn.
One year later,Franca Sozzani, editor-in-chief for Vogue Italia continues to celebrate the beauty of brownness and dedicates the anniversary issue, to an iconic doll that my generation has admired, loved, and played with during our adolescent years, Barbie. And, not just Barbie, but Black Barbie.
The first black doll named Francie was introduced in 1967, as a friend to Barbie, following the first "Black Barbie" doll in 1980. This fall the launch of the new black Barbie doll collection, called "So In Style" will hit the shelves. The dolls have been designed with more authentic-looking black features, including a new facial sculpt that has fuller lips, a wider nose, more distinctive cheek bones and curlier hair.
Although, I am excited and grateful that the Barbie doll will now look more like me, I will still teach my children no color line and encourage them to play with all ethnicities, whether on the playground with classmates or in the living room with their dolls and toys.