For every little girl who grew up playing with dolls, a Barbie Dreamhouse represented the ultimate fantasy.
Azusa Sakamoto is 36 now, but she hasn’t outgrown the dream of living like Barbie.
So much so that the Los Angeles nail artist has turned her home into a hot pink shrine to her favourite doll.
Her West Hollywood apartment is crammed full of her $80,000 (£59,000) collection of Barbie dolls and related memorabilia.
Azusa even customises her furniture, so that everything from her fridge and kettle in the kitchen, through to the toilet in her bathroom, have all been ‘Barbie-fied’.
Azusa Sakamoto, 36, a nail artist, from Los Angeles, has turned her home into a hot pink shrine to Barbie
Azusa said: ‘Everything in my room is Barbie.
‘I have a Barbie fridge, drawers, table and dresser, shelves. I have a Barbie kitchen counter and Barbie oven, and bathroom.
‘I have Barbie dolls; I have purses, I have shoes, I have pillows, I have necklaces, I have shirts, I have skirts, I have socks, I have cups, I have plates, I have posters, I have art works, I have nail polish, I have a Barbie clock…’
Kept in glass cabinets in her pink home, Azusa has 222 Barbie dolls and counting.
Her apartment houses her collection of at least 222 Barbie dolls, of which she has now lost count
Her kitchen is hot pink and decorated with Barbie images, including her Barbie branded fridge
‘To be honest I have never really counted or I never really cared how much I was spending on Barbie items but maybe I have spent over $80,000.’
‘It’s getting a little harder to count each Barbie dolls I keep; for numbers right now I have 222 Barbie dolls.
‘I’m not a huge collector for vintage Barbie dolls but I have two Barbie dolls which are valued at $1,800.
‘My favourite Barbie doll is called Movie Mixer Barbie Doll. If you have never collected Barbie maybe you will think that Barbies are only made of plastic but she is made of silk stone, which is pretty heavy.’
She dyes all of her food hot pink so even her eating habits are just like Barbie’s own
The house has been decorated from top to bottom in Barbie and Azusa’s favourite colour
If she cannot find the Barbie merchandise she is looking for she has taken to making her own
Compared to some Barbie fans who have doll collections going into the thousands, Azusa’s is admittedly small fry but what makes her collection stand out is that she doesn’t just have Barbie dolls – she has Barbie everything.
Originally from Japan, Azusa never had a Barbie doll as a little girl; it wasn’t until she was 15 that she got her first Barbie item.
She said: ‘My very first Barbie item was not a doll but a lunch box. I was 15 years old and it just looked like cute American pop culture to me. Since then I was just so attracted by these hot pink Barbie things.
‘My first Barbie doll was actually two years later from that. I became an exchange student when I was in junior high school and I was staying in Indiana for one year and when I went to Indiana I got my first Barbie doll.’
Azusa, who is originally from Japan, didn’t even grow up with Barbies and got her first doll when she was 15-years-old
Azusa posts Barbie videos and photos on her YouTube channel and social media
She makes customised nail designs to co-ordinate with her vast collection of Barbie dolls
Since then Azusa’s love of all things Barbie has grown so much that every step of her day involves something Barbie-related.
She posts Barbie videos and photos on her YouTube channel and social media. She also makes customised nail designs to co-ordinate with Barbie dolls.
She said: ‘I wake up in my pink bed with my Barbie pillows and with my Barbie pyjamas and I make my tea with my Barbie kettle.’
Azusa even cooks herself pink meals to reflect her love of the doll’s signature shade, mixing in beet juice to her egg white omelettes, edible pink glitter on cupcakes and even pink food dye into her coffee.
Azusa she spends a lot of her time scouting for Barbie items online and at Barbie conventions (pictured as a little girl)
She has dyed her hair bright pink and only wears pink clothes, unless clothes in other colours have the Barbie logo
‘I love cooking some pink food because I got really cute Barbie plates so that totally makes me want to cook more and I really love trying to cook some pink food,’ she said.
She spends a lot of her time scouting for Barbie items online and at Barbie conventions and when she can’t find something with Barbie on it – she makes them herself.
On top of Azusa’s home being wall-to-wall Barbie, she also makes sure to always look the part, dying her hair pink and wearing clothes to match.
‘I mostly wear pink and even now if I wear some other colours beside pink they always have the Barbie logo. I have over 100 Barbie T-shirts.’
Azusa believes Barbie is a good role model for young girls because she’s had lots of different jobs
She has vowed not to get plastic surgery to look like Barbie because she only wants to dress like her
Azusa says she doens’t care about any criticism she receives because she’s ‘not hurting anyone’
But Azusa says although she loves Barbie that doesn’t mean she wants to be Barbie
‘I don’t think I want to have surgery to make myself look like her. I just love Barbie, I’m not trying to be like her. I know she’s a doll, I’m not confused about that point.
‘I am not hurting anyone and I think life is too short to wear boring clothes and I just love being my self, I feel comfortable.
‘Sometimes people think it’s kind of crazy because they think Barbie is only for kids but I see Barbie as more like a fashion icon or like a brand.’
Barbie doll’s extreme proportions and blonde blue-eyed appearance has been criticised for its narrow view on beauty but Azusa disagrees:
She believes Barbie is representative of all women because the dolls have had different ethnicities and hair colours
Azusa says she doesn’t care what other people say about her passion because she enjoys it
She said: ‘I really don’t know why some people think Barbie is not healthy for kids, or tells you we have to be skinny or something.
‘If you see my Barbie collection I have all different ethnicities, all different skin tones all different hair colours and now even they even have different body types.
‘Actually Barbie is just telling girls how to have fun being a girl, I think.
‘Barbie has boyfriend Ken but I always think Barbie is buying that dream house with her own money, she didn’t ask Ken to buy her house, or shoes or purses or anything, she is so independent, she has a bunch of jobs. So real beauty is outside and inside.
‘I don’t really care what other people think of me, I just love what I’m doing.’