Have you guys heard the buzz about the new Lammily doll?
The Lammily doll is a new doll created by artist Nicholay Lamm, that he designed to have the average body proportions of an American 19 year-old.
When I first heard about this new doll, I think I rolled my eyes, as a lot of the press was talking about the doll as ‘the modern Barbie’ or some such comparison. But then I actually looked at the images of the doll, and the Lammily doll looks awesome!
Check out some pictures of the doll (and read about the project) here.
I think I am something of a Barbie apologist, because I always liked playing with Barbies because they were pretty and had a lot of pretty clothes that I could mix and match and create characters from. However in looking at Lammily and reading Lamm’s own text about the toy, it is clear that this toy is something really positive (looking happily forward toward progress and not just dwelling on a villainized past) and subtly revolutionary in that it is helping our society reshape its views on women’s bodies. Lammily manages to celebrate the natural body while still being a fun, attractive, and creative toy.
Lamm’s original project to just make a Barbie with more average proportion, places a normal Barbie and a redesigned Barbie side-by-side:
When the evidence is placed right in front of my face, I am shocked! How did we EVER think that it made sense to have doll that represented so much American culture and American womanhood in such peculiar shape! I really do feel like this image is helping undo some sort of brainwashing for me. I think in my subconscious, although I knew that Barbie’s measurement were weird, I thought that although Barbie’s proportions are a little exaggerated on some level the main gist of her idealized body was attainable (long thin legs, smooth skin, small tummy and waist etc.). But when you put her literally next to what women DO look like, it becomes clear that this is a big DELUSION. They are nearly as ridiculous as those horrible Bratz dolls. How have we handed these dolls to our children generation after generation?
I’m trying to imagine what boys’ dolls (ahem . . . I mean ‘action figures’) would look like if we were that wildly off with their bodies . . . I’d imagine all their dolls would probably have to look like The Thing except with better skin. (Side note: Can you imagine if we called all girls’ dolls ‘action figures’???? Mind-blowing!)
We really need to figure out creative ways to help girls (and everyone) feel safer accepting diverse and attainable bodies, and feeling more uncomfortable venerating bizarre and distorted bodies designed to make us feel and act inadequate. I think the Lammily doll is a great and practical step in that direction and I hope it succeeds. The first run of the dolls has already been successfully crowdsourced, and I encourage you to check out the site to learn more about the Lammily doll.