This month we are featuring Diane Johnson for our Member in the Spotlight.  She joined He's A Doll in it's second year. She affectionately refers to herself as Ken's Mom, because she really is!  He is 26 years old, and in the IT world at Discover Financial Services.

When asked why she named him Ken, she states that she had a neighbor named Ken, and his wife's name was Dolly.  She always liked that name, and when the Ken doll came out, she wished for a KenŽ doll for Christmas for her BarbieŽ dolls to hang out with. The Christmas of 1961 brought her dream to reality.  Pictured is her young self under the Christmas tree with her brand new in the box brunette flocked 1961 KenŽ doll! 

LEFT:  Diane Christmas 1962 receiving her very first KenŽ doll!  ABOVE:  Diane still has her original KenŽ doll seen here dressed in Dr. KenŽ fashion!

 Hours and hours of make believe play with her titian bubble BarbieŽ, blonde Midge™, and her older sisters brunette #3 ponytail doll, caused KenŽ doll's flocking to rub off .  So the creative child took black shoe polish, painted his hair back on, and continued to play.  That very doll still stands in her vintage collection today (see above picture)! She's had many professional acquaintances named Ken, and it just really appealed to her.


ABOVE:  Part of Diane's Vintage KenŽ collection.

Diane lives in a western suburb of Chicago with her husband, Raymond of 29 years.  She has two grown children....Ken and his wife Laura live in a northern suburb of Chicago. Her grown daughter Kristina, lives in a suburb of Seattle. Many collectors have come to know Kristina as she was a member of the local Windy City Barbie Doll club along with her mother, and has traveled to many of the National conventions with her.

Diane has an extensive Fashion Doll collection.  She claims to have every vintage KenŽ doll in the line, with most all their outfits.  She has many vintage BarbieŽ dolls and friends.  When the Tonner Tyler and Sydney dolls were released in 1999, she was right there collecting their couture lines from the beginning. She has many other kinds of Fashion Dolls as well, and each one has a meaning, or a story behind why she owns them.  She has 6 of her original Mattel BarbieŽ, KenŽ, and friends line, that she was fortunate enough to play with as a young girl.

ABOVE:  Diane's Vintage KenŽ collection on display.  BELOW:  Mod Era group with fashions.

When she came to the age of being too old to respectably play with her dolls, she put them up on a high shelf in her bedroom, and still enjoyed them.  Becoming an "adult" forced her to store them away, until some teddy bear friends "dragged" her to a bear and doll show...Her friends were admiring the bears, while she was transfixed on the vintage BarbieŽ and KenŽ dolls she was seeing.  She bought the blue encyclopedia, commenced to pull the original six dolls out of the closet. She then educated herself on what she had, and what she had wished she would have had, and as they say, the rest is history.

She has actively been collecting since 1983, long before KenŽ was appreciated. She is thrilled to see KenŽ come into his own spotlight, and has met many wonderful collectors as a result.  She attends most National BarbieŽ conventions, the first one being 1986 in Phoenix, and recently attended the first KenŽvention just this past Fall.

LEFT:  Diane's children Ken and Kristina.  ABOVE:  At KenŽvention with friend Julie Bronski.

" I am looking forward to the 2nd annual KenŽvention next Fall, and have added many wonderful new KenŽ items and dolls and clothes to my collection. I especially loved adding to his "bachelor pad" with the backdrops and furniture from this last collection.  If I had the room, I would aspire to make a diorama to the flavor of what was done by Dwane this past KenŽvention.  That was clearly the most beautiful thing I've ever seen in any competition.  I think it inspired many KenŽ collectors."

So, this is one KenŽ collector that will be around a very long time, and truly was from the beginning!


KENŽ and associated trademarks and trade dress are owned by and used under license from Mattel, Inc. Ž and ™ designate U.S. trademarks of Mattel, Inc. Š2012 Mattel, Inc.

All Rights Reserved. This convention is not sponsored by, or affiliated with Mattel, Inc.