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Barbie, the architect

Every year Mattel hosts the “I Can Be” contest, in which various jobs befitting Barbie’s perky personality and skill set (I’ll bet she at least knows Quicken) are submitted online. Once the winning profession is chosen, Mattel dutifully releases a new Barbie accessorized with the tools of her trade . Ever since 2002 a group of architects and librarians have been campaigning for Mattel to add architect to Barbie’s long roster of other jobs, which include baby photographer, police officer, nurse, race car driver, astronaut and president of the United States. Architect actually won out in 2002, but Mattel refused to make the doll and a fierce battle has ensued ever since.

Advocates for Architect Barbie nearly won out again last year, but she went into computer engineering and news anchoring instead. But now, finally, architects worldwide can rejoice. As announced by Architectural Record, their profession has chosen by Mattel for its 2011 Barbie. She’ll be available for purchase in the Fall, complete with a mini pink doll house, her very first project. Knowing Barbie’s social skills it probably won’t be long before she schmoozes with fellow starchitects. Here’s hoping she’ll partner up with Diller, Scofidio + Renfro and redesign the Barbie Fold-Up Dream House – that thing was always impossible to snap shut.

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