It was the perfect combination for girls of all ages: Tea and Barbie. Almost 200 guests watched in awe as real Barbies walked down the runway modeling wedding, prom, ballerina and cowgirl outfits.
“I like to see the fashion show because I like fashion,” said Maria Palmer, an eight-year old who currently owns about 40 Barbies. “I would like to be one of those Barbies.”
Tea with Barbie began last year as part of a Barbie collection exhibition that broke attendance records at The Old Davie School Historical Museum. The Barbies were so popular and drew so many guests that it became an annual event.
“I think it has to be because of the uniqueness of this event,” said Leslie Schroeder, the museum’s executive director. “We sold out two weeks ago.”
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The Barbie models were Davie residents and volunteers who agreed to walk the runway after receiving an invitation email from the museum.
“For me it was just a chance to come out and support the Old Davie School,” said Katie Edwards who modeled Flamingo Barbie in a pink dress. “I chose the Flamingo Barbie because my two favorite cultural historical resources in Davie are the Old School and Flamingo Gardens.”
The models twirled and paused to wave at the guest as they were introduced with a brief description of the doll they represented. The 50s Barbie opened the show wearing a pink poodle skirt.
“I can’t decide which Barbie is my favorite, they are all great,” said Sarah Moon, a 7-year-old from Plantation. “Barbies are my favorite thing to do, I love Barbies and I play with them every twice a day.”
Davie Town Councilwoman Susan Starkey closed the fashion show as she modeled presidential Barbie. She held an American flag and wore a blue suit with pearls.
“I grew up with Barbie so it made it very unique,” said Starkey. “She has been a role model for many of us growing up.”
The event attracted grandmas, moms and daughters. Cooper City resident Debra Miller brought her 5-year old daughter to this event for the first time.
“I try to make time for mother-daughter things, just for the girls,” said Miller. “My daughter likes really girly stuff, and this is nice because she loves Barbies.”
The room was decorated in pink, with fancy china for the tea and the buffet. Many of the girls came in dresses, tiaras and sparkly jewelry.
“I’m a Barbie today,” said seven-year-old Jenna Heywang. “A princess Barbie.”
Four-year-old Julianna Cedeño brought two of her Barbies to the event but forgot about her dolls when she saw the real-life Barbies.
“I play with my Barbies a lot, but I liked the Barbie with the long white dress,” said Cedeño, referring to the model dressed as a bride Barbie.
After the fashion show, the Barbies walked around the tables signing autographs and taking pictures with the guest. They raffled various collection Barbies and ended the event with dessert.
Tea with Barbie is now an event to look forward to every year, it will continue to raise funds and awareness of The Old Davie School Historical Museum.
“I’m always thinking about what we can do next year to make it better and different.” Schroeder said. “We have to start thinking for next year!”