Silkstone Dolls, still going strong!
"Barbie" is a registered trademark of Mattel, Inc.; "Fashion Royalty" and "Candi" are registered trademarks of Integrity Toys, Inc.
Marcdolls are not affiliated in any way with the manufacturers of these dolls, or any other doll manufacturer.

The photos and text of the entire contents of this web site are copyright of Marcdolls, 2000-2013, in Watt / Switzerland, and may not be used without special written permission.


Index:

Bild-Lilli, Barbie's predecessor

Barbie's Introduction

Barbie's early history

Barbie's biography

Barbie the doll

Barbie's Manufacturers Markings

Barbie's controversies

Barbie's friends and relatives

Ethnic Barbie's

Barbie's fashion

Barbie through the ages, 1959 - 2009

Barbie luxury doll to massproduction

Barbie as collectors object

How to care Barbie's head?

How to care Barbie's body?

How to care Barbie's clothes?

Barbie versus Bratz

Dolls of the My Scene-line

The five different collector types

Glossary of Abbreviations

Miscellaneous

 

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Silkstone Barbie Dolls, an Introduction:

Silkstone Barbie Dolls, also known as Fashion Model Barbie dolls and Lingerie Model Barbie
dolls, are the Barbie dolls that have really captured collectors' interests in the 21st century.
The dolls were the first collectible Barbie dolls to truly evoke the vintage Barbie dolls of the
early 1960s in style, makeup, hair and clothing. The dolls have a devoted following, and some
even are still released wearing lingerie in spite of a Moral Majority controversy over their attire
several years ago.

Materials Used To Make Silkstone Barbie Dolls:

The Silkstone Barbie dolls are made of a very hard vinyl that mimics porcelain.
Most collectible and play Barbie dolls are made of a softer vinyl that "gives" when touched.

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Years of Production of Silkstone Barbie Dolls:

The dolls were introduced in 2000 and are still in production today.

Size of Silkstone Barbie Dolls; Company That Produces The Dolls:

The Silkstone Barbie dolls seem just a bit taller than other Barbie dolls (which are 11.5 inches tall) in a back-to-back match-up; it may be because they have feet that are extra-arched for higher high heels than other Barbie dolls. Mattel produces all Barbie dolls.

Body Description of Silkstone Barbie Dolls:

The Silkstone Barbie dolls have a permanent model's pose-their right arm is bent for placement on the hip, Their left leg is bent at the knee. The doll has joints at the neck, shoulders, hips and waist. The knees do not bend on these dolls; their position is permanent. The bent "on the hip" arm can make the dolls a bit difficult to dress.

Clothing for Silkstone Barbie Dolls:

The outfits for the Silkstone Barbie Dolls are full of details and are made with fine fabrics. The dolls come "dressed" and there are usually 1 or two separate outfits released each year. Their are also one or two Silkstone Barbie doll gift sets each year with extra clothing and accessories. For the first time in several years one of the dolls will be released wearing PJS-the Highland Fling Fashion Model Barbie doll.

Silkstone Ken Doll:

A Silkstone Ken doll, the Fashion Insider Ken doll, was released in 2003.

More About Silkstone Barbie Dolls: Market and Pricing:

The majority of Silkstone Barbie dolls have not increased dramatically in price in the past few years. As with other modern collectible dolls, you can generally find the latest Fashion Model Barbie doll releases at or below suggested retail on the Internet. However, a few dolls do sell at premiums, including dolls released to the Barbie Fan Club, Platinum dealer dolls and the first two Silkstone dolls issued, Lingerie #1 and Lingerie #2. These two dolls (#1 has a blonde ponytail and #2 has a brunette ponytail) have prices that fluctuate between about $160.00 and $250.00 on eBay. The Silkstone Ken doll, in spite of being rather rare (he was only released for one year) can be found below his original retail price. It is a shame that Mattel does not release more separate clothing for the dolls each year; the doll was originally marketed as a true fashion doll, but generally they have been releasing only 1 or 2 separate outfits each year.

Silkstone Barbie Dolls History:

Silkstone Barbie Dolls have become the collectible Barbie doll of recent times. A very high quality finely detailed series of dolls, also called Fashion Model Barbie Dolls (FMBC) and Lingerie Model Barbie Dolls.

The Silkstone dolls were first introduced in year 2000 with the release of the first in series. The Lingerie Barbie, Lunch at the Club Fashion, and the Delphine Barbie. What sets these dolls apart from the standard line of Barbies is the fine detailing and unique material used to make the dolls. The dolls are made from a hard vinyl that gives the look of a very expensive porcelain finish.

Most of the Silkstone Dolls come packaged in a high quality two piece box, this allows easy removal from the box without having to tear it up.

There is one Silkstone Ken doll in the series, Fashion Insider Ken doll was released in year 2003.

Each year Mattel also releases a couple of Fashion Accessories Packs specifically for the Silkstone body. The body of this doll is different from the standard Barbie body. It has been designed to stand in a "models" pose and includes joints at the neck, hips, shoulders, and wait but has no joints at the knees. Also the right arm and left knee are permanently bend into a models pose.

About Silkstone:

The Barbie Fashion Model Collection, or Silkstone, line was introduced in 2000 and it was an instant hit. The first dolls sold out Quickly and are now very desirable among collectors. This highly detailed line includes an articulated body, high end fashion and great quality. Silkstone is heavy and smooth like porcelain, but the head is vinyl and the body is a resin, sand and quartz composite, which offers the designers at Mattel new perspective. Because of the nature of this material, the body is more articulate, it is easy to clean and can stand almost anything from chemicals to heat and staining.

Silkstone care:

Be careful of discoloring, especially the Chinoiserie fabric tends to leave slight marks. You can try using acetone-free nail polish remover to remove stains, but be careful: Silkstones might be painted (not sure) and if so, it could also remove the paint if you rub too hard. Watch the PAINT on the dolls, the toenails are prone to fading with removing and putting back shoes.

Silkstones can get green ear, so always try to carefully remove your doll's earrings if you want to prevent this. The earrings are straight bars with tiny knobs on the end. In order to make this easier for you, there are a few things to know.

A Silkstone head is made of (hard) vinyl. Because of this, you can warm it up with a blowdryer (safe distance, not too close) to make it soft. Then gently pull out the earrings, but be careful, they can get damaged/break. You may consider coating the earring posts with clear fingernail polish, this is said to slow down/stop the metal from oxidizing. Then you could put them back. Do note that this might turn wrong! The nail polish may have a chemical reaction on the vinyl and become sticky over time.

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Causes of Green Ear:
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Question: What causes green ear?
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Answer: Green ear is caused by oxidation of the coating on the jewelry. The vendor that produces most of the BFMC™ jewelry also produces jewelry for a costume jewelry line for one of the finest design houses. Even the best costume jewelry will tarnish over time.
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Question: Is there any evidence that shows how long it takes for green ear to show up?
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Answer: NO.
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Question: What external influences are known to increase the chances of green ear?
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Answer: Temperature, humidity, grease from your hands, direct sunlight, etc.
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Question: Are Silkstone™ dolls more likely than vinyl dolls to get green ear? 
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Answer: No. The Silkstone™ dolls have vinyl heads. However, it’s a harder vinyl than regular vinyl dolls. The reason vinyl heads are used is because we cannot root hair on Silkstone™. If we had used the Silkstone™ material on the heads, we would have been limited to using wigs, which would have limited our hairstyles. Since the heads are harder on the Silkstone™ dolls than other vinyl dolls, removal of the earrings is more difficult and may damage the plating on the earrings. Removal may also cause breakage of the earring post. Any doll that has metal earrings is at risk of getting green ear. 
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Question: Is it true that if you de-box the Silkstone™ dolls you must remove the earrings, but if left in the box they are safe from green ear?
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Answer: We can’t say for certain, but de-boxing a doll is unlikely to speed up the tarnishing effect unless there is a drastic difference in the temperature or humidity of your environment.
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How to Treat Affected Dolls?
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Question: Is there any way to treat the problem on dolls that have already been affected?
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Answer: Yes, there are solutions sold through doll magazines for doll restoration that advertise they help remove the tarnish effect. We suggest you check with a professional doll restorer.
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Question: Will green ear continue to spread even after removing the earrings? 
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Answer: Probably not!
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Remove Earrings or Not?
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Question: If the earrings on a doll are plastic, should they be left in? And if the earrings are metal, should they be taken out? 
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Answer: We suggest you leave the plastic earrings in as they will not discolor or tarnish. However, if you want to remove metal earrings in fear that once they discolor or oxidize they will make the ears green, then removing the earrings would be your decision. Just remember that taking the earrings out will damage the protective coating on the earring, therefore if you ever decide to put them back into a doll’s ear, remember that doll is more likely to get green ear once the coating has been damaged.
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Earrings Sold Separately?
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Question: Why are Silkstone™ dolls still being packaged with earrings that may cause green ear? Why doesn’t Mattel package the earrings separately and give the consumer the option to put the earrings into a pre-existing hole? Will Mattel make any kind of replacement earring available? 
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Answer: We are considering packaging the earrings separately, but we need to do further testing before implementing this method. One of the reasons we did not do this in the first place is because the head is very hard and there was a possibility that the earrings would break when the customer tried to put them in. For now, we have removed the earrings from the BFMC™ dolls and concentrated on other pieces of jewelry until we can have a course of action. Currently we don’t have any plans to replace or exchange earrings. 
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Earring Material:
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Question: Is it only earrings that cause a problem on the dolls? What about the other jewelry (necklaces, bracelets) that seems to be made out of metal? Are there problems with that?
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Answer: There should not be a problem with other jewelry items since they don’t come in direct contact with the doll’s material. 
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Question: Why not have a plastic post on the earrings? Would this cause green ear? Also, if this is a safe type of earring, package an assortment of them, so they can be used on dolls that have had the unsafe earrings removed. 
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Answer: Unfortunately it is not as simple as that. We cannot just insert a plastic post in a metal earring. We can’t set stones in plastic the same way we can in metal. There is also a limit to the thickness - or rather thinness - of plastic. If Mattel were to make plastic jewelry, it would be bulky or heavy. I think we can all agree that part of the charm and design interest in the BFMC™ line is the wonderful detailed jewelry."
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The designer Robert Best for Silkstone:

Of course, the Barbie Fashion Model Collection wouldn't be such a hit with collector's, if the dolls wore just anything.
Designer Robert Best has dressed this superb line from the beginning.

Education:

Parsons School of Design, NYC

Background:

This Fashion Model maverick started out designing for the likes of Anne Klein and Isaac Mizrahi.

Joined Mattel in:

1995

Signature style:

Classic lines and haute couture are his specialty, as evidenced by the extremely popular Barbie Fashion Model Collection and the Model of the Moment Collection featuring the new ModelMuse™ body sculpt.

Name drop:

Rubbed elbows with Cindy Crawford when he designed her one-of-a-kind doll for Dream Halloween in 2003.

Dolls he's designed:

The Barbie Fashion Model Collection, Billions of Dreams Barbie, Crystal Jubilee Barbie, Millennium Bride Barbie, the Model of the Moment Collection.

Other Dolls Robert Best has designed:

The best of Robert Best

In his own words:

"I think my design style is always a little bit reality based. When I design for Barbie doll, I think that I'm still designing clothes.
I don't think I'm designing for a doll. If a woman responds to it thinking it's something she'd like to wear, I know it's been a success."

Fashions for real live people:

The art that Robert Best has produced for Barbie Collectibles:
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”Robert Best Designs”
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Billions of Dreams: This Ultra Limited Edition Barbie was released last year to commemerate the 100,000,000 Barbie doll produced.
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Portrait in Taffeta: This doll was released in 1996 as the first in the Couture Series.
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Serenade in Satin: This doll was released in 1997 and is the second in
the Couture Series.
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Symphony in Chiffon: This doll was released in 1998 and is the 3rd in the Couture Series.
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Symphony in Chiffon : This doll is the first and only black doll in the Couture Series.
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50th Anniversary Dior: Robert Best adapted this design for Barbie doll. Released in 1997.
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Eliza Doolittle at the Ascot Races: Robert Best adapted the design for Barbie doll. Released in 1996.
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Star Trek Giftset: This giftset was released in 1996 to commemorate the 30th Anniversary of the cult show.
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Sleeping Beauty: This doll was released in 1997 and is the 4th doll in the Childrens Collector Series.
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Summer in San Francisco: This doll was released in 1998 and is the first in the City Seasons Series.
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Evening Sophisticate: This doll is to be released in 1998 and is the 11th doll in the Classique Series.
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Promenade in the Park: This doll is the first in the Great Fashions of the 20th Century. Released in 1997.
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Illusion: This doll is the first in the Masquerade Gala series. Released in 1998.
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Rendezvous: This doll is to be released in late 1998 and is the 2nd in the Masquerade Gala Series.
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Barbie as Marylin Monroe
in The Seven Year Itch:
This doll was released in 1997 and is part of the Hollywood Legends.
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Barbie as Marylin Monroe
in Gentlemen Prefer Blondes (pink):
This doll was released in 1997 and is part of the Hollywood Legends.
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Barbie as Marylin Monroe
in Gentlemen Prefer Blondes
(red):
This doll was released in 1997 and is part of the Hollywood Legends.
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Faberge Imperial Elegance: This beautiful porcelain doll was released in the fall of 1998 and is the first in the Faberge Series.
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Oscar Dela Renta: This Bloomingdales Exclusive.
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Spring in Tokyo: This is the 4th doll in the City Seasons Collection.
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Vintage Spring in Tokyo: This is the same doll as above, except she has the vintage head sculpt. This was available through BC's website as an internet exclusive.
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Summer in Rome: This is the 5th doll in the City Seasons Collection.
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Crystal Jubilee: This is the Limited Edition doll to be released in 1999 to commemorate Barbie's 40th Anniversary.
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Audrey Hepburn in
Breakfast at Tiffany's:
This is the first doll in the Audrey Hepburn Collection.
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Audrey Hepburn in
Breakfast at Tiffany's:
This is the 2nd doll in the Audrey Hepburn collection.
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Audrey Hepburn in
Breakfast at Tiffany's:
This is the Cat Mask fashion.
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