Pensioner, 72, has incredible collection of more than 10,000 Barbie dolls in Thailand
Published date: Wed, 30 Aug 2023 15:44:39 +0700
This Barbie-obsessed pensioner has collected more than 10,000 dolls - which she believes is the biggest collection in Asia.
Sunan Witsetkith, 72, became fascinated with the iconic American toys when she was a little girl in the 1950s but she could not afford them.
However, as soon as she was working in her 20s she began collecting them and has now amassed more than 10,000 dolls, which she keeps safe in glass display cases at her home in Bangkok.
The impressive collection features all manner of Barbie - including royal Barbies in queenly regalia, tropical beach Barbies in black-and-white bathing suits, dark-skinned Barbies in haute couture, and a Margot Robbie lookalike based on the latest Barbie film.
Sunan also has Barbie dolls of prominent celebrities and personalities, including Elvis Presley, Cher, Prince William and Princess Kate Middleton, and even the late Queen Elizabeth II.
The Barbie superfan shared that her passion for the toys began as a child, when she laid eyes on a fancy doll at a market in Penang, Malaysia.
She said she was impressed by the beauty, clothes, and intricate details on the figure, but could not buy it as it was too expensive. She played with the dolls at her home in Bangkok and collected a handful of cheaper Barbie dolls from markets.
She went to collage and her passion would be reignited years later in 1978, when she entered a toy store in Hong Kong for her honeymoon and bought a limited-edition Holiday Barbie dressed in a fluffy bright pink gown.
Sunan, whose nickname 'Tukta' means doll in Thai, said: 'From that point on, my passion for Barbie drove me to research more about dolls. Whenever I received my salary, I would head to a mall and purchase discounted Barbies to expand her collection.
'During my shopping trips, I often crossed paths with fellow Barbie enthusiasts and struck up friendships with them. They introduced me to even more Barbie variations.'
Sunan added that she was especially fond of the colour white, and Barbies in wedding attires and white outfits had a special place in her heart.
To newbie collectors, she said: 'I recommended starting the collection gradually. Don't become overly possessive, especially because some items can be quite expensive.
'Be patient and diligent. If something is meant to be yours, it will naturally come to you, and if it's not meant to be, it won't happen.'
1.19 Hello my name is Sunan Witsetkith. I am 72 years old and I love collecting dolls. Especially Barbie
1.32 I started collecting dolls because my nickname is Tukta (which means doll in Thai) and I also love to play with dolls
1.42 When I became a student and went to school, I saw Barbie dolls for the first time in my life being sold in a market in Penang
1.50 I remember thinking that these dolls look different from other dolls I have ever played with. The dolls I normally played with were made of plastic and were hollow on the inside. They' were also light
1.56 But with these dolls, I felt the weight in my hands. They felt tight and their hands and feet looked realistic. They were beautiful. The dolls had clothes, bras, and underwear
2.07 I like them but back then they cost 300 THB each. I thought to myself, I wouldn't have the chance to have them. But in the year 1978, I was married
2.15 My husband brought me for a honeymoon in Hong Kong. He knew that I liked dolls and toys so he took me to Toys R Us in Hong Kong. I walked straight to where the dolls were and found Barbie
2.30 I remember getting goosebumps looking at it. Because the doll is all I ever dreamed of and all I ever wanted. So I bought one and brought it back home
2.39 It was a limited collection of a Barbie doll wearing a beautiful pink fluffy dress. The Holiday Barbie was placed on the shelf. I bought that doll back. That doll was the start of my Barbie doll collection
2.54 After that doll, because of my love for Barbie. I studied them and whenever I received my salary, I would go to the mall and buy whatever was on discount. I bought them and kept them
3.05 Whenever I go buy, I get to meet people who are also into Barbie dolls. We'd talk and end up being friends. The more friends I had, the I was more exposed to the barbie doll collection
3.15 I gain more knowledge. My new friends would tell me what is what. So now when I had money, I'd go and buy. I continued to buy until today and I have more than 10,000 dolls
3.25 I love the white color and I like wedding dresses. If you look around, you'll see that I have many dolls in white. This one here is a special Barbie that had been designed by Bob Mackie called the Empress Bride
3.40 The dolls look luxurious and well-decorated. They looked beautiful in a beautiful way. I don't just buy any Barbie. So for example the Holiday Barbie Collection, because it changes every year
3.57 It creates a memory of revolution over the years. But if they're strange ones, I don't buy them
4.12 If you're thinking of collecting, you should start with yourself. Study yourself and find what you like or question yourself whether this object you've collected over the years, is you
4.23 If you think this is it, then slowly collect and don't become obsessive. Because some of the dolls would raise the price so high. So if you like them very much, follow them patiently
4.38 And most importantly, if it's meant to be yours, It will be yours. But if it's not, then it just won't happen
4.45 For some people they just follow the trend on what's popular and when they later find out that it's not what they like, they'd throw them. I feel sad for the dolls