Why this hijab-wearing Barbie is equal parts gorgeous and important
Barbie’s wardrobe may run toward micro-skirts and high heels, but her jet-setting style need not be culturally exclusive. Enter Haneefa Adam, a fashion-forward 24 year-old who decided that Barbie needed a makeover to better represent women like her; specifically, women who wear a hijab.
Adam, inspired by other Barbie fashion bloggers, established an Instagram account that highlights the style-first doll wearing beautiful, modest clothing much like Adam wears herself. The Hijarbie account soon found a welcoming audience and now boasts more than sixteen thousand followers- even more impressive when you learn the account is barely two months old!
The Barbie outfits featured on Adam’s account are colorful, intricate, and definitely fashionable. Sewing all the clothes herself, she often takes inspiration from popular fashion bloggers with similar style sensibilities. Many of her photos feature real-life outfits by her fashion icons and the Barbie miniatures she’s designed to match.
For Adam, however, this isn’t just about fashion, it’s about inspiration. Speaking to Buzzfeed, she shared her hopes for the account. “I want Hijarbie to inspire the Muslim girl child. It’s about having a doll that looks like her, that represents her own cultural and religious background.”
This broadening of representation for Barbie is a great move, as studies have shown that girls, even while loving the doll, can experience drops in self-esteem for not living up to her traditionally narrow standards of beauty. Barbie-maker Mattel has recently received praise for diversifying body shape among the dolls by introducing petite, tall, and curvy models, but there’s no reason to stop there!
Even though Haneefa Adam is reportedly busy planning her own lifestyle line called Hanie, we get the feeling she’d take the call if Mattel wanted to add her fantastically beautiful Hijarbie designs to the doll’s expansive wardrobe options!