Jenny (ジェニー Jenī) is a 10½ inch fashion doll produced by Japanese toy company now known as Takara Tomy since 1982. The doll was known as Takara Barbie, and in 1986 the doll was renamed "Jenny" after Takara ended their licensing agreement with Mattel.Takara Barbie differs from a western Barbie. Takara Barbie was altered to better appeal to Japanese preferences, with a shorter height, large rounded manga-style eyes and a closed mouth. The doll's physical figure is more natural than the Western Barbie's exaggerated figure. Like her Western counterpart, Jenny wears a large variety of outfits, which often include street fashion, school uniforms, kimonos, and other uniquely Japanese costumes, such as "Bullet-Train Stewardess Jenny". Today the Jenny doll is a sentimental favorite doll in Japan, but she is much less popular than Licca-chan, Japan's market leader fashion doll.
Prior to 1986, the doll was known as Takara Barbie. In 1986 Takara ended their licensing agreement with Mattel, and, as they owned the rights over the Takara Barbie's design, came up with a new name for the doll. The explanation given for the name change was that Jenny was the name of a character Barbie portrayed in a play, also titled Jenny. The play was a success and Barbie had become so associated with her character's name that she decided to change it to Jenny. Jenny's boyfriend was renamed from "Takara Ken" to "Jeff".
- Takara Jenny and Friends
- Pollack, Andrew; "Barbie's Journey in Japan;" New York Times; December 22, 1996;
- http://www.revolutionarygirl.com/jennystyle/ Archived June 10, 2007, at the Wayback Machine.
- Takara Jenny Dolls
- Japan's Jenny: Takara's Trend Setting Fashion Doll
- "Introducing Takara's Jenny" by David Hammon, Barbie Bazaar, January/February 1995 Issue
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