A couple who attempted to buy a gift for their niece ended up inspiring a possible new Barbie set, CNN is reporting. Matt Jacobi and Nick Caprio of Scottsdale, Arizona have been together for over 11 years. The two are set to wed in May 2019, and their two nieces are super excited to be flower girls. One of their nieces, 8-year-old Natalie, had a birthday on December 8. Natalie is a huge fan of dolls and Barbie, so Jacobi and Caprio thought it would be cute to get a wedding set.
"We really wanted to give her something that she could enjoy, but also something that would be meaningful to her and somehow connected to the wedding she will be a part of," said Jacobi.
The couple ended up finding a Barbie set that was almost perfect with two little flower girls. However, it was sold with a bride and a groom, and there were no wedding sets they could find that had a same-sex couple. They ended up buying the wedding set along with an extra Ken and swapped the bride for another groom. Natalie loved the present, and Jacobi posted their custom gift on Instagram to share with his followers.
"This toy brought so much joy and happiness to my 8-year-old niece, and there are thousands and thousands of families just like Nick and I. I just had to do something," Jacobi said.What started as a simple Instagram photo resulted in a viral post, and Mattel, the company that produces Barbie, took notice. The couple was eventually invited to Los Angeles by the toymaker for a business meeting where the company will consult with the couple about potentially marketing a same-sex doll set.
"We have a confirmed date set in early January, and we are extremely excited, grateful and incredibly determined to make this happen," Jacobi said.
"We are over the moon with all the positive responses we have received. We really just want to thank all the people out there for believing in our message that love is love."The Barbie doll has been popular for decades, and she's been marketed as a couple with her boyfriend Ken since 1961. As time has gone on, Mattel has been attempting to expand the Barbie brand to be more diverse and relatable. In 2015, Mattel began to offer more options for Barbie's skin color, eye color, and hair type. In 2016, Barbie began to be marketed with different body types, with a petite Barbie and a curvier Barbie made available for purchase. Last year saw a more diverse line of Ken's and even a Barbie that wore a hijab.