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Life

Dads Who Play Barbie

DadsWhoPlayBarbie_D-A-D_0187-01For anyone that hasn’t noticed, Barbie has undergone some big changes in recent years. The traditional slim, blonde, white doll has had a well-needed makeover. She’s now available in various sizes, body shapes and skin tones. She’s also updated her personality and perception through a very successful campaign that focused on her ability to help girls imagine a powerful and fulfilling future for themselves. And now she’s trying to get dads in on the act through a brilliant new campaign ‘Dads Who Play Barbie’.

Launched in January with a 30 second ad spot during the NFL playoffs, the campaign from BBDO San Francisco encourages dads to engage in play with their daughters. The ads tread a very difficult tight-rope of being authentic and emotive without being too gushy. They manage to do this perfectly, helped largely by the unscripted play moments between real dads and their daughters. There are some great little moments, funny and touching, that really resonated with me, the subtle looks and voice changes of the dads, and the imaginations of their daughters.

Matt Miller, executive creative director at BBDO San Francisco, says the work was particularly poignant to him personally.

“When our brilliant creative team, Rachel Kelly and Taylor Garrett, first showed this idea, I immediately fell in love with it. Not only is it a perfect expression of Barbie’s purpose of helping girls imagine all their possibilities, I could see myself in it,” he says. “I grew up with four brothers, no sisters, so I never had Barbie in the house. Despite that, now that I have a 3-year-old daughter, I often find myself on the floor with her, Barbie in hand.”

Admittedly, we don’t have any Barbie’s in our house, but I can often be found trying to force feed another generic plastic doll some plastic vegetables in a bizarre ‘play imitating life’ tea party re-enactment on the instructions of my 4yr old daughter. She hasn’t quite grasped the imaginative side of play yet, but loves bossing me around, this usually ends  with me and a couple of dolls on the naughty step!

The campaign was backed up with research conducted by Wake Forest University in the US, showing that girls who have loving, communicative, supportive relationships with their fathers from early childhood are less likely to suffer from a lack of self-confidence and self-reliance as they grow up. This is echoed through the campaigns main message ‘Time spent in her imaginary world, is an investment in her real world.’

If that’s the case I’m fully committed to my daughter’s real world but need to work a bit on the imaginary one.

DadsWhoPlayBarbie_D-A-D_0187-02 DadsWhoPlayBarbie_D-A-D_0187-04 DadsWhoPlayBarbie_D-A-D_0187-03 DadsWhoPlayBarbie_D-A-D_0187-06DadsWhoPlayBarbie_D-A-D_0187-08DadsWhoPlayBarbie_D-A-D_0187-10DadsWhoPlayBarbie_D-A-D_0187-09

#DadsWhoPlayBarbie

 

Posted by Kyn Taylor
28 February 2017

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About

D.A.D is a blog for Dads;

Dads who have a passion for design.

Dads who champion independent, entreprenurial spirit.

Dads who are continually inspired by their kids.

Dads whose way of working has changed since the arrival of children.

Dads who can’t remember what they used to do with all their spare time.

Dads who are juggling deadlines with bedtimes.

Dads whose coffee consumption has gone through the roof.

And dads who need a bit of reassuring that they’re not alone.

 

Who’s the daddy?

Kyn Taylor

One boy. Leo (6). One girl. Emmi (4)
Designer

Cai Taylor

One girl. Carys (3). One boy. Hayden (2)
Designer

Adam Bowie

Two girls. Miller (4) and Neva (10 months)
Designer

Jamie Ellul

One boy. (6). One girl. (3)
Designer

Jon Cockley

Three kids. (6, 4 and 1)
Co-Founder of illustration agency Handsome Frank

Mark Ecob

One boy. Joseph (5). One girl. Ella (2)
Book Cover Designer

Scott Lambert

Three girls. Avery and Blythe (5), Belle (7)
Designer. Illustrator. Worder.

Anna Richardson Taylor


Matt Baxter


Ryan Dixon


Andrew Smallwood


Vinh Nguyen


Xander Veldhuijzen

Two boys. (10 and 7.5). One girl. (5)
Dutch Design and Web Geek

Subscribe

Subscribe below to get regular updates from D.A.D

Submissions

We welcome submissions from all dads.

Our criteria is simple – we’re looking for cool, design-led content for kids and interesting stories about what it is to be a 21st Century dad.

As designers we love great pics, so the better the images the more chance there is in us publishing the story.

Email submissions should be sent to info@dadsanddesign.com and contain the following:

• Project title
• Project description
• A good selection of photo’s at least 800 pixels wide or a link to download where appropriate.

We will do our best to read and respond to every email.

Contact

Have a question or some feedback?
Fill out the form below.