Newspaper article News Mail Bundaberg Qld.

More Than Just a Toy, Barbie Is One Woman's Obsession; DOUG GILLETT Finds out This Is No Ordinary Doll House

Newspaper article News Mail Bundaberg Qld.

More Than Just a Toy, Barbie Is One Woman's Obsession; DOUG GILLETT Finds out This Is No Ordinary Doll House

Article excerpt

RIECKIE Muchow finds it difficult to choose a favourite from the endless rows of Barbie dolls that prance and kick from the cupboard tops and shelves throughout her Bundaberg home.

Walking with an outstretched hand, Mrs Muchow gently taps the fair heads of the sleek plastic figurines gathered on a bookshelf in her lounge room.

She runs her hand over Can-Can dancers arranged in provocative poses with fishnet stockings and frilly red skirts, ballerinas in mid-rotation dressed in powder-blue tutus and pointe shoes, and scientists in white cloaks with all-business pony tails and black spectacles.

C[pounds sterling]I really can't do it,C[yen] she says, looking up with a pained expression.

C[pounds sterling]They're my Barbies and I love them all the same.C[yen]

Mrs Muchow is a Barbie girl and, ignoring the occasional groan from her husband, Trevor, she has transformed her three-bedroom home into a pink-tinged, glitter-lined Barbie world.

A total of 250 Barbie dolls can be found through the halls of the Muchow family home, complemented by a further 100 Ken figurines and 50 Friends of Barbie dolls.

The end result blankets every spare inch of space throughout the house in a polished display of streamlined plastic, long lashes, longer legs and ever-watchful glittering blue eyes.

C[pounds sterling]I sort of gave up after a while,C[yen] Mr Muchow says.

C[pounds sterling]Barbies make her happy and if she's happy, I'm happy.C[yen]

Making Barbie-themed dioramas is Mrs Muchow's specialty.

She scours the internet for miniature toys she can use to create her own Barbie fantasies in open-ended pine boxes fashioned by her husband.

There's a high-end fashion boutique display complete with a tiny cash register, clothes racks and change rooms; a camping scene with Barbie's African-American friends Christie and Steven enjoying a beer outside their tent; and a maternity scene in which Barbie's heavily pregnant friend Midge shares a loving embrace with her husband next to a tiny hand-crafted cot. …

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