What Would it Look Like if Barbie Downsized Her Dreamhouse?

updated May 3, 2019
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(Image credit: Anna Salmi)

Welcome to UnReal Estate, where we take characters from pop culture and reimagine their fantasy spaces into homes fit for the “real world.”

(Image credit: Apartment Therapy)

Barbie has it all, right? It’s been 60 years since the iconic blonde was born and she’s never failed to impress us with her trendy closet, impressive career (Doctor! Detective! Astronaut! Olympic gymnast!), and stellar girl squad.

But for most design enthusiasts, the coolest part of Barbie’s life is her real estate. You know what we’re talking about: The Dreamhouse. From the impressive bay windows she’d peer out of as Ken picked her up for a date, to the convenient slide and/or elevator that’d help her get from floor to floor, to her unapologetic penchant for pink, Barbie’s house was nothing short of dreamy. In fact, there’s a good chance it was your very first brush with #DesignGoals.

Barbie’s Dreamhouse might be the perfect blend of fun and fancy, but you have to admit it’s not the most realistic real estate we’ve ever seen. Not only do very few listings have a built-in slide or elevator (we checked), but not a lot of people live in a sprawling, multi-floor mansion.

So, we couldn’t help but wonder what Barbie’s abode would look like if she downsized her Dreamhouse. For a trip down memory lane, check out what we think Barbie’s kitchen, living space, and bedroom would look like scaled-down:

(Image credit: Anna Salmi)

The Kitchen

Barbie’s downsized dream kitchen may not have a huge wine fridge, frozen yogurt machine, or pizza oven, but it would be tricked out with the coolest gadgets. Like you, Barbie’s kitchen will be packed with a Vitamix blender, KitchenAid stand mixer, sous vide, and, obviously, an InstantPot.

“Her kitchen would be state of the art,” predicts Alessandra Wood, interior design expert and vice president of style at Modsy. “Her appliances would be smart-enabled so she could run around town and still check in on what’s baking in the oven.”

When she is not cooking up a storm—and has her gadgets sprawled out on her compact marble countertops—she’ll store them in a few traditional, white cabinets. But just because Barbie would have a mostly-white kitchen doesn’t mean it’d be boring. On the contrary, she’ll add some warmth to her space with rose gold hardware and an on-trend pink SMEG fridge.

(Image credit: Anna Salmi)

The Living Area

It doesn’t matter if she’s having a cozy night in with Ken, catching up with Skipper and Midge, or babysitting Kelly, one thing’s for sure: Barbie’s living quarters is where the party’s at. As the hostess with the mostess, Barbie would prioritize making her living room a warm, and welcoming space.

“Barbie needs ample space to entertain, [which is] the challenge of a [small space],” Wood says. “She would have creative accent seating like ottomans and poufs that she would use for seating when entertaining.”

Since square footage is at a premium, Barbie would select multi-purpose furniture like storage ottomans and poufs that can act as a coffee table. She would also keep her space cozy with some hygge elements like a sheepskin rug and some textured throw pillows.

Barbie’s been a trendsetter since 1959, so there’s no doubt her living room would check so many boxes off our millennial apartment BINGO board. While her pink, velvet mid-century couch would anchor the living room, Barbie would also accessorize with some fiddle leaf fig plants and floating shelves filled with color-coded books. An accent wall made of palm-printed temporary wallpaper and a neon sign that says “Think Pink” would make her living quarters totally Instagrammable.

(Image credit: Anna Salmi)

The Bedroom

A bedroom is any design-lover’s slice of serenity—and Barbie is no exception. While her living room might be bursting with color and prints, her bedroom will tap into her softer side.

We can’t help but think of popular co-working space The Wing when we imagine Barbie’s bedroom: Curvy accent pieces in pastels like millennial pink (duh!) and rounded light pendants ooze girl power without feeling busy or cluttered.

Speaking of clutter… Barbie would definitely binge-watch “Tidying Up with Marie Kondo,” but don’t expect her to KonMari her space anytime soon. With so many outfits and shoes that spark joy, her closet is no match for the vertical fold (she has to store her astronaut suit somewhere!). In her smaller space, Barbie’s bound to ditch her luxurious canopy bed for a pared-down alternative. (Don’t worry: She’ll turn her more modest bed into cloud nine with some nice sateen sheets.)

Today, she would cleverly turn some of her favorite outfits into design moments by hanging a hat or two on her wall and placing her favorite heels on a floating bookshelf.

Naturally, Barbie’s bedroom wouldn’t be complete without a dressing table. Instead of splurging on a set-up with a massive mirror and vanity lights, she’d choose a piece with plenty of storage. That way, she can store her lipsticks, blushes, and bottles of hairspray, and use her table as a desk when she’s done primping.

What do you think Barbie’s down-sized Dreamhouse would look like? Sound off in the comments below.