Wednesday, December 14, 2016

So Close To Perfection! The 2016 Ballet Wishes Barbie Ornament Thrills!

The Good: Good sculpt, Decent use of mesh, Wonderful balance, Most of the coloring
The Bad: Base of crown/hair, Slightly assembled appearance on the shoulders
The Basics: The 2016 Hallmark Keepsake Ballet Wishes Barbie ornament is easily one of the best that Hallmark has produced!

Ballerinas are a staple for the Barbie toy and Barbie Hallmark ornament line. With the return of the Barbie line to Hallmark Keepsake and Hallmark Gold Crown stores, it was pretty inevitable that ballerina versions of Barbie would be produced once again in ornament form. What is somewhat surprising, though, is just how good one of the ballerina Barbie ornaments can be, but for 2016, the Ballet Wishes Barbie ornament certainly raises the bar!

For those unfamiliar with them, Barbie dolls have been a leading trademarked doll from Mattel for over sixty years. Hallmark Keepsake picked up the Barbie license in order to produce Christmas ornaments and Ballet Wishes Barbie is one of several Barbie and Barbie-themed ornaments produced for 2016!


The Ballet Wishes Barbie ornament recreates the Ballet Wishes Barbie doll with Barbie up on her right toes, with her left leg bent at the knee back behind her right thigh, as if she is in mid-spin. The ornament features the recognizable visage of Barbie with her blonde hair in a crown and cascading behind her neck. This Barbie is uncharacteristically wearing minimal make-up and the coloring for this ornament is a very cool pearlescent paint job that is pretty impressive and very different from other Barbie ornaments I've yet seen. The ornament has Barbie wearing a simple pink tutu and a leotard with an ornately detailed bodice. The skirt is webbed, pink and made of nylon. This Barbie ornament is 4 1/4" tall by 2 1/2" wide and 1 1/4" including the skirt.

The Hallmark Ballet Wishes Barbie ornament is made of a durable plastic outside the nylon skirt and has the feminine icon standing alone, holding her hands out to her sides. The pose for the Ballet Wishes Barbie is very different from other Barbie ornaments and it looks great with Barbie having one leg up in the middle of a dynamic-looking pose. The sculpted detailing on Barbie's toe shoes, bodice and crown is immaculate. The sculpt looks surprisingly realistic and good. Even the face for the Ballet Wishes Barbie looks more energetic and dynamic than the face on other Barbie ornaments. There is a slight seam at the shoulders that make the Ballet Wishes Barbie ornament look a little more assembled than it otherwise might.

The coloring for the Ballet Wishes Barbie is generally good. The ballet outfit has a very cool pearlescent quality to it that looks incredible. The tiara for the Ballet Wishes Barbie is appropriately metallic-looking and the skin tones look wonderful and contrast the outfit perfectly. The coloring is, however, the only real detraction from the Ballet Wishes Barbie ornament. The coloring for the hair and crown is just a bit off, so it is virtually impossible to tell where the hair begins, the crown ends, and/or if the ballerina is wearing a hat below the tiara or if it is intended to be different color hair that is woven into the base of the tiara. The white hair contrasts the blonde hair and it is unclear whether the white is supposed to be hair or a different material for the crown below the tiara. Outside that one little glitch, the Ballet Wishes Barbie ornament is perfect!


As a Hallmark Keepsake ornament, Ballet Wishes Barbie could have a function like a sound chip or light effect, but does not. This is just an ornament, a low-cost (comparatively) option for fans of Barbie. I think it's disappointing that Ballet Wishes Barbie does not have any articulation to her limbs. It was well within the abilities of Hallmark to make the ornament articulated at least at the shoulders or neck, but they opted for a boring statue look for the ornament and it is disappointing given the seams at the shoulders where the arms connect to the main body piece.


As with all ornaments, the intent of the Hallmark Keepsake Ballet Wishes Barbie ornament is to be hung on a Christmas Tree. And for those creating the ultimate Barbie Christmas Tree, the Ballet Wishes Barbie ornament is a fantastic addition. The ornament has the standard brass hook loop embedded into the top center of the character's head. The hook loop is nicely hidden behind the tiara and is obscured there. From there, one hangs the ornament and the Ballet Wishes Barbie ornament is perfectly balanced! Unlike the doll itself, which is almost impossible to get to stand up, the Ballet Wishes Barbie ornament has great balance and hangs perfectly!


Hallmark Keepsake began delving into the collectibles market in 1991 with Star Trek when it introduced the exceptionally limited edition original U.S.S. Enterprise ornament (reviewed here!). Since then, they have branched out into every major franchise from Barbie to Gone With The Wind to Twilight. The Ballet Wishes Barbie ornament sold well and seemed to meet customer demand. Despite how many ballerina Barbie ornaments have been on the market, the quality of the Ballet Wishes Barbie ornament is so high that it is hard not to believe it will be a great investment piece for collectors!


The Ballet Wishes Barbie ornament is beautiful, well-balanced, and affordable, making it one of the best of the line!

For other Barbie ornament reviews, please check out:
2016 Holiday Barbie
2016 Cherry Pie Picnic Barbie
2015 Celebration Barbie (Black)
2015 Barbie Celebration Set (2013/2014 Celebration Barbie)
2012 Barbie Provencale
2012 Brava, Ballerina! Barbie
2012 Holiday Celebration Barbie (Black)
2012 Holiday Celebration Barbie (Caucasian)
2012 Matinee Fashion Barbie - Final In The Series!
2012 Tweed Indeed Barbie
2011 Celebration Barbie (Black)
2011 Campus Sweetheart Barbie
2011 Prima Ballerina Barbie ornament
1996 Enchanted Evening Barbie ornament
1995 Barbie Debut (Brunette) - Club Exclusive
1994 Barbie Debut ornament


For other ornament reviews, please visit my Ornament Review Index Page for an organized listing!

© 2016 W.L. Swarts. May not be reprinted without permission.
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