Finally, there's a roof over Architect Barbie's poor head! Since the stork dropped her into this world in February, the stylish wisp of a thing has essentially been homeless, rescued only by an American Institute of architects contest that asked AIA members to design her next Dream House. The winners? Ting Li and Maja Paklar, young, NYC-based grads of the Harvard Graduate School of Design’s M.Arch program. In a joint statement, Li and Paklar said, "Barbie was both of ours’ favorite doll growing up in China and Croatia. [...] We hope to encourage more young female architects to flex their design muscles and just to have fun with architecture.”
Now, a bit about this house, shall we? Situated in Malibu "on a bluff overlooking the Pacific Ocean," the pink, modern abode "reflects exactly who Barbie is in her new profession. She has pledged to build an environmentally sustainable home using the principals set forth by USGBC [U.S. Green Building Council] as well as to stay true to all the needs of a classic California girl!" A floor-by-floor analysis:
"[...] entertaining space and chef’s open kitchen on the first floor, along with an office / library / meeting space. There is also a terrace on the second floor. The third and fourth floors are Barbie® doll’s private enclave, her bedroom and her inspiration room respectively. The roof has a green house and a landscaped garden for her domestic pets. The design elements include solar panels, landscaped rooftop and irrigation system, operable shading devices, bamboo flooring, low flow toilet and sink fixtures, and locally sourced and manufactured materials and furnishings." Other fun facts: there's a computer-controlled closet that "allows for the clothes to be displayed and visible from every angle of the house" and a total sum of 1,500 square feet of space designed for entertaining, all to suit Barb's tastes: "Although she is an internationally renowned globe trotter, when not traveling she loves to look smart, entertain her potential clients, and come up with innovative ideas in her high tech, low energy consumption home."'
(Editor's note: Mattel will not actually manufacture the house, but the company will donate $1,000 in the winning architect's names to an architecture/design-oriented charter high school in Philly.)
· AIA Announces the Winner of the AIA Architect Barbie® Dream House™ Design Competition [AIA.org]
· Please Welcome Barbie Architect to the Mattel Dancefloor [Curbed National]
· AIA Asks Architects to Design Barbie's Dream House [Curbed National]