Home Entertainment Who is Barbara Handler: Ruth Handler’s Daughter

Who is Barbara Handler: Ruth Handler’s Daughter

Barbara Handler Ruth Handler's daughter

There was a lot of confusion that the older woman sitting on the bench talking to Margot Robbie’s Barbie in the newly released Greta Gerwig’s Barbie film is Barbara Handler. Yes, Barbara, the original inspiration for the Barbie Doll. 

She is the daughter of an American businesswoman and inventor of the Barbie Doll, Ruth Handler. But really Barbara appeared in Greta Gerwig’s latest movie. 

After some research, it was found that an Oscar-winning costume designer, Ann Roth played that older woman role in the Barbie movie not Barbara. But our today’s article is completely dedicated to Barbara Handler, her early life, career, and personal life. 

Who is Barbara Handler?

Barbara handler

Barbara is famously known for being the daughter of American businesswoman and inventor of the iconic Barbie doll, Ruth Handler. 

However, Barbara was the inspiration behind the Barbie doll as she had a deep love for playing with dolls when she was young. She first encountered a curvy plastic doll displayed in a Swiss store window while strolling down a street in Switzerland. 

She was captivated by the unique appearance of that doll and had been accustomed to playing with paper dolls. Her fascination and interest in curvy plastic dolls inspired Ruth to develop the concept of Barbie dolls. 

It is a three-dimensional fashion doll that revolutionized the toy industry. In 1959, Ruth Handler made the first Barbie doll, representing modern girls’ grown-up and modern aspirations. 

When the Barbie doll was first introduced to the world, it marked a groundbreaking moment in the history of toys. It symbolized empowerment, fashion, and limitation possibilities for generations. 

Barbara’s first interaction with that simple doll in a Swiss store set in motion the creation of the cultural icon that would go on to inspire imagination worldwide. 

Early Life, Family, and Education

Ruth Handler and Elliot Handler

Barbara Handler was born on 21 May 1941, in Los Angeles, California. Her parents, Ruth and Elliot Handler were the American inventor and founders of Mattel, a toy manufacturing and entertainment company. 

Ruth and Elliot were the creators of the iconic Barbie Doll. According to a report, when Barbara was born, her parents only had $14 in their bank. Barbara was just 15 years old when her mother came up with the idea of Barbie. 

And Barbara was directly associated with the creation of the Barbie doll as it was inspired by her own childhood fascination with playing dolls. While enjoying a family trip to Europe, Barbara encountered a curvy plastic doll in a Swiss store window, which captivated her. 

From there, her mother, Ruth, sparked an idea to create the OG Barbie doll, forever changing the toy industry. Throughout her life, Barbara witnessed the immense success of the Barbie doll. 

Her Career

No information regarding Barbara’s career is available on the internet. Her parent’s careers are only available on the internet. Barbara’s father, Elliot Handler, was an American businessman, inventor, and co-founder of a toy manufacturing company, Mattel. 

On the other hand, her mother, Ruth Handler, was also an American businesswoman and inventor. She was also the co-founder of Mattel. Mattel is the world’s second-largest toy manufacturing company in terms of revenue after The Lego Group

Two historic and most valuable brands, Barbie and Hot Wheels, come under the manufacturing company. These brands were named the top global toy property and the top-selling global toy of the year for 2020 and 2021. 

What is Barbara Handler’s Net Worth?

As there is no data regarding what she is doing for a living, it is difficult to say how much is her net worth. But according to a source, her mother, Ruth Handler’s net worth was about $100 million when she died. 

And her father, Elliot Handler, had an estimated net worth of around $5 million. 

Who Was Barbara Handler Married to?

In 1959, Barbara was married to Allen Segal when she was just 18 years old. According to a report, Barbara and Allen were married for 11 years and divorced for unknown reasons. 

The couple had two children, including a daughter named Cheryl. According to a source, the Allan doll, also known as Ken’s buddy, played by Michael Cera in the new Barbie movie, was named after Barbara’s ex-husband Allen Segal. 

Frequently Asked Questions

1. Does Barbara Handler Play the Role of an Old Woman Sitting on the Bench in the Barbie Movie?

No, the older woman sitting on the bench talking to Margot Robbie’s Barbie is not Barbara. The role was actually played by an oscar winning costume designer, Ann Roth. 

2. Who are Barbara Handler’s Parents?

Her parents are Ruth and Elliot Handler, American inventor and founder of a toy manufacturing company, Mattel. 

3. How Old is Barbara Handler?

Barbara is 82 years old. 

4. Who Was the Barbie Doll Inspired By?

Barbara Handler was the inspiration behind the making of the Barbie doll. 

Wrapping Up

That’s all we have regarding Barbara Handler in the article above. However, her journey shows how a simple childhood playtime moment can lead to the creation of an enduring cultural icon Barbie, which revolutionized the toy industry. 

As she ages, Barbara’s role in inspiring the beloved Barbie doll remains an essential part of her family history.

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