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Asha - African American Collection, also simply known as Asha dolls, were a short lived spiritual successor to the AA centric doll line, The Marvelous World of Shani.


When Shani was discontinued due to low sales, Mattel made one more attempt to release a doll line featuring exclusively black characters, and Asha was the result. She is the sole character in her doll line. Though Asha shares a name with the Shani character Asha, the two are unrelated, especially noted by the fact that Asha dolls use the Shani face mold (notice how the Asha doll head uses the same gold earrings from the first wave of Shani, revealing that it's a reused mold). Only three versions of Asha were released, all wearing African Kente Cloth fashion. The back of the doll boxes also noted that the name Asha meant life in Swahili. The dolls, in addition to their fashion, also came with hairbrushes as accessories. The gold accents in their clothes is a reference to the importance of gold in African Culture.

The line was also eventually discontinued after less than a year. 15 years later, Mattel would release the So In Style dolls in 2009, as yet another AA centric doll line featuring exclusively black characters.





Second Edition of Asha - African American Collection.


Third edition of Asha - African American Collection.


  • Just like with Shani dolls, Asha are retroactively considered Barbie dolls, since the Shani sculpt and body has been used for Barbie brand dolls ever since.