Inspired by the impact of Sonia Singh's Tree Change Dolls, one mom decided to also give old Bratz dolls a similarly powerful "makeunder," this time transforming the dolls into real-women role models.
From Malala Yousafzai to Jane Goodall, Wendy Tsao upcycled old Bratz dolls to surround girls with real female figurines. "As a parent, I'd love for my child to play with a young J.K. Rowling or Malala and have conversations about them," she said.
In a self-published post on Bored Panda, Tsao describes wanting to explore the impact that toys can have on one's identity. "The dolls we find in toy stores today are often licensed Disney characters or the heroines of Hollywood blockbuster movies that capitalize on the pull of fantasy, fictional characters to young consumers," Tsao wrote. "But there are real-life people who are heroes too, with inspiring stories of courage, intelligence, strength and uniqueness."
Tsao believes that a child playing with a doll of someone who is a real person — with real-world, not make-believe, adventures — might see a positive impact as they grow up.
"They might think more about real-life things and appreciate more the real potential that lies within all of us, than when she or he plays with, say, a Disney character or Bratz doll," Tsao said. "You know how we 'outgrow' our toys — Bratz doll or Disney princess doll? It's hard to imagine feeling the same way about Malala. Can you outgrow Malala?"