A few years ago, during a trip to our local nursery, the girls discovered a gated fairy garden. Ever since, they have been fascinated by these miniature, magical gardens. Although trendy, the idea of planting gardens and building tiny houses to please fairies and bring good fortune has historical significance. When we learned about a nearby Wee Faerie Village, the girls put on their most ethereal pairs of fairy wings and we headed to explore the exhibit.
The museum campus where the village was installed had 30 totally unique and handmade fairy structures, each inspired by a unique culture and time in history. The craftsmanship was amazing, and the level of detail at such a small scale was astonishing. The girls ran from one house to another, marveling at the tiny features. We noticed that one had palm trees made from green feathers as leaves and tiny acorns as coconuts.
Some of our favorite installations included a Scottish ruin,
a castle carved into a tree trunk,
and a tulip field filled with fairy windmills made by children at a local school.
My little one had an important question while we strolled around the museum grounds. “Where are the little guys?” she asked when she hadn’t spotted any fairy visitors. Truly, the village seemed a series of outdoor dollhouses calling for little toys to take up residence. I could see my girls using their little figurines to make believe in them outdoors for hours.
The fairy houses were so inspiring, we decided to make our own. I love that this is an ongoing project that the girls and I can plan together and implement over time. I love that it will require imagination, effort, and care and foster creativity and responsibility. This week when we visit the farm, we are going to scout the perfect location for our fairy garden.
We wrapped up our fairy outing with some fun by the fire. Each girl got a fairy-inspired sticker book, Usborne’s First Fairies Sticker Book for the littlest, and the slightly more advanced 1001 Fairy Things to Spot for her big sister.
We also discussed a plan for starting our own fairy garden:
1. Research fairy gardens at the library, bookstore, and online.
2. Choose its location.
3. Purchase unfinished wooden birdhouses at the craft store and paint and decorate them with tiny, found objects.
4. Find and plant the right miniature plants to surround the houses.
5. Wait for fairies (but use dollhouse toys in the meantime)!