Tuesday, August 23, 2011

MacKenzie Fenella Layla, Byron Lars's Last, and...

... the real designer has stood up.

Barbie enthusiast, Romona J. shared image links to the doll she describes as Byron "Lars's last doll for Mattel."  I have not been able to confirm this information and Romona did not share her source.  She did give me permission to share her wonderful images of  "the last Lars" here and wrote, "I hope he comes back for a 20th anniversary doll to mark his work with Mattel." 

Byron Lars and his design-inspired Barbie, Mackenzie Fenella Layla from the Passport Collection
(photograph courtesy of Romona J.)

Mackenzie Fenella Layla joins the two dolls that preceded her, left to right, Lars's Ayako Jones and Charmaine King (all photos are courtesy of Romona J.)

The real designer is exposed:  At the bottom of MacKenzie's description page on BarbieCollector.com, the designer is shown as Ann Driskill.  A big question mark in my head prompted my inquiring mind to investigate this further.  I discovered that Mattel designers "consult" with celebrity designers like Lars, Mackie, Vera Wang, etc. and bring their fashion concepts to life in doll scale. The celebrity designers do not actually work for Mattel, but lend their concepts to Mattel (and of course their names) for these particular dolls.  So while I imagined incorrectly that Lars designed "his" entire collection of Barbies from start to finish, head-to-toe, the dolls were in fact designed by Mattel's designers using Lars's concept (and again, his name). 

Did you know this?




  1. Hmmm. Didn't know this. If you think about it, it is just like the real fashion world. Designers don't usually sew their fashions. They come up with the design concept and others pull it together. When it comes to Byron Lars, I wasn't familiar with him prior to seeing his work at Mattel That is why I thought he worked for Mattel. If I had known he was a big time designer in the real fashion world, I probably would have figured out that he wasn't doing the actual work. It only makes sense.

    I would love to design furniture and have someone else make it. One day....

  2. Vanessa,

    I hope you are able to design and have others do the furniture making for you.

    Remember me when, okay?



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