Berlin designer Leyla Piedayesh, the mastermind behind popular fashion label Lala Berlin, became one of 17 women to have a Barbie modeled herself in Mattel’s “Inspiring Women” series aptly timed for International Women’s Day on Thursday.
Piedayesh, who was born in Iran but moved to Germany at the age of nine, worked hard to make a name for herself in a crowded fashion industry where even today it is still dominated by men at the top. After working as the editor for MTV’s fashion series “Designerama”, Piedayesh took her career into her own hands in 2004 with the launch of her own urban fashion company, Lala Berlin, to showcase the edgier side of the Berlin spirit.
“Who in his childhood did not dream of seeing his image in a Barbie?”, Piedayesh said in response to being featured with her own doll. “I hope this campaign gives young people the courage to believe in themselves and go their own way, as I did myself. Inspiring the next generation of children means a lot to me and it’s a great opportunity to tell my story together with Barbie.”
Piedayesh joins 16 other “Inspiring Women” in Mattel’s Shero (a combination of “she” and “hero”) Barbie program — 14 modern-day role models and three historical women — making it the largest addition since launching the series in 2015.
Those honored include:
Patty Jenkins, Filmmaker, USA
Chloe Kim, Snowboarding Champion, USA
Bindi Irwin, Conservationist, Australia
Nicola Adams, Boxing Champion, UK
Çağla Kubat, Windsurfer, Turkey
Hélène Darroze, World-Renowned Chef, France
Hui Ruoqi, Volleyball Champion, China
Leyla Piedayesh, Designer and Entrepreneur, Germany
Lorena Ochoa, Professional Golfer, Mexico
Martyna Wojciechowska, Journalist, Poland
Sara Gama, Soccer Player, Italy
Xiaotong Guan, Actress and Philanthropist, China
Yuan Tan, Prima Ballerina, China
Vicky Martin Berrocal, Entrepreneur and Fashion Designer, Spain