Designer Ruthie Sommers gave this antique Parisian sofa a Barbie-worthy makeover in Schumacher’s Gainsborough Velvet in the perfect shade of bubblegum pink.

Francesco Lagnese

Style Director Tori Mellott Is Living in a Barbie World

Life in plastic, it's fantastic.

August 3, 2023

Growing up, I passionately loved (and still passionately love) Barbie. I can still recall with fierce accuracy all of my dolls, their hairdos, their shoes, their outfits—and I had a lot of them. In order to save money, my grandmother painstakingly made all the clothes for my Barbies, and while I didn’t have a Barbie Dreamhouse, I did have a beautiful handmade dollhouse my grandfather constructed over the course of a year. He used wallpaper scraps from our house to paper the rooms, solid-colored felt as the carpet, and he made and upholstered all of the furniture himself. (To be clear, I played with my Barbies adjacent to the dollhouse—they were way too big for my grandfather’s refined Victorian gingerbread house.)

At the top of my summer movie list: Barbie, of course.COURTESY OF WARNER BROS. PICTURES

My favorite thing to play was “Barbie shoe store.”  I would collect various boxes from around the house, create a floor plan, and once I had all of the displays laid out perfectly, I’d style and merchandise the shoes. I could spend hours doing this—tinkering, rearranging, and experimenting. No one ever came into the store—I don’t think it had a customer-service department, let alone a name—but I was always very pleased with my creation.

I probably played with Barbies (and concocted imaginary stores) longer than I should have; in fact, I was fifteen when I finally—and begrudgingly—put my dolls in a box in our attic. But that time spent with Barbie remains some of my warmest, fondest memories of childhood. Even as a grown-up, I couldn’t be more excited about the Barbiecore trend that’s taking over this summer—and now, as a design magazine editor, I finally get to curate my very own Barbie store!

Shop Tori’s Barbie Starter Pack

  • Lou Lou Sunglasses by Saint Laurent

    It’s always sunny in Barbieland, and I have heart eyes for these Saint Laurent Lou Lou glasses.

    $490, saksfifthavenue.com

  • Iconic Leopard Pillow by Schumacher

    When Barbie takes a walk on the wild side, it’s still pink! This leopard-print pillow is fierce without feeling ferocious.

    $256, thewellappointedhouse.com

  • Murano Tumbler by Casa Celva

    Even though we all know Barbie doesn’t really drink water, that doesn’t mean she skimps on her glassware. These handblown tumblers keep her hydrated, healthy, and chic!

    $32, maisonflaneur.com

  • Ultrafragola Mirror by Ettore Sottsass for Poltronova

    We’re not saying Barbie is vain, but she does need a proper full-length mirror. This Poltronova mirror is the sweet spot between form, function, and a dash of Barbie whimsy.

    $16,950, 1stdibs.com

  • Hangisi Pump by Manolo Blahnik

    If Barbie were Cinderella, these satin Manolo heels would definitely be her glass slipper.

    $1,225, neimanmarcus.com

  • Wool Crepe Mini Dress by Rowen Rose

    You’ve heard of a little black dress. But for Barbie, it’s always a little pink dress.

    $542, net-a-porter.com

  • Express Tanning Water by Tan-Luxe

    Because we know Barbie is smart enough to not lie out in the sun, she gets her glow from this self-tanning spray.

    $48, modaoperandi.com

  • Panama Notebook by Smythson

    Dear Diary,
    I really am living my best life.
    Love, Barbie

    $85, smythson.com

  • Pink Lady Couch by GUFRAM for Studio 65

    Aptly called the “Pink Lady Couch,” this sassy sofa comes in a variety of colors. It’s even available with a piercing option!

    $13,500, 1stdibs.com

  • Serena Pro Lite Tennis Racquet & Balls by Wilson

    Add tennis to the list of things Barbie excels at. And of course she has to play with a pink racquet and balls!

    $54, doittennis.com

  • Delina Exclusif Eau de Parfum by Parfums de Marly

    Barbie’s all about the five senses, and smelling good is just as important as looking good.

    $210, nordstrom.com

  • Butterfield Duvet Cover by Matouk

    Only the finest linens will do for the Barbie Dreamhouse. This scalloped duvet cover is the icing on the cake.

    $648, matouk.com

  • Spiral Watch by Graff

    Does time even exist in Barbieland? We think this delicate wristwatch would look so elegant—even on a plastic wrist.

    $18,000, graff.com

  • Chanel Joues Contraste Powder Blush

    Subtle and sophisticated, this Chanel blush is a staple in Barbie’s makeup bag.

    $47, chanel.com

  • Lilly Murano Glass Chandelier

    Barbie’s in her Venetian era, and she’s snatched up this decadent old-world Murano glass chandelier.

    $678, muranonline.com

  • Jaya Cashmere Throw by Scandia Home

    When Barbie feels the big chill, she warms up with this bubblegum-pink cashmere throw.

    $625, scandiahome.com

Everything in our shop was hand-picked by a FREDERIC editor. We may earn commission on items you purchase.