Celebrating the enchanting magic of International Fairy Day!
Today is International Fairy Day, the perfect time to indulge in magical thinking and imagine that we have the help of the largely unseen ‘Good People’ (as they are known in Irish folklore) as our tiny allies working to help us behind the scenes …
According to mostly British and northern European folklores, fairies are believed to help with household tasks like washing dishes or sweeping the floor, and to grant wishes to those who need them most.
However, while being enchanting and lovely, fairies are also known to be easily offended and reportedly dislike people who are greedy with their wishes. People who believe in fairies are always mindful to keep on the magical folk’s good side or risk suffering a fairy prank – like curdling milk, just as it is being poured into tea!
One of the most famous fairies in storytelling is Cinderella’s fairy godmother, who famously gifted Cinderella with glass slippers for the ball. It is little wonder the fairy godmother chose such glittering footwear because fairies are famous for loving sparkly things, such as paperclips, silver buttons, and coins. What’s more, that’s exactly what the tooth fairy leaves out – shiny coins! – as a gift in exchange for collecting children’s lost teeth.
Before we continue … do you believe in fairies? Of course you do! Even Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, who famously created the world’s most famous fictional detective, Sherlock Holmes, was a firm believer in fairies. And who wouldn’t want to believe in these beautiful sprites, living at the bottom of garden, dancing on magical fairy rings, or living in royal kingdoms in another enchanted fairy realm?
People have been looking for proof of fairies’ existence for centuries. In 1917, young English cousins Frances Griffiths and Elsie Wright took photographs of themselves posing with five magical winged creatures in a garden scene. The photographs were published in 1920 and instantly made the cousins and ‘The Cottingley Fairies’ famous, as they swept the world by storm. In the sadness following World War I, people in nations everywhere delighted that at long last there was evidence of fairies living among us on Earth!
Frances Wright, 1917, photographed with ‘The Cottingley Fairies’ as first published in The Strand Magazine, 1920
Many years later in the 1980s, when they were elderly women, both Elsie and Frances admitted that the photographs were a prank that got out of control. Uh-oh! They had simply drawn and coloured the fairy drawings on cardboard and then stuck them to hat pins, which were popular at the time. HOWEVER, just because the photographs were a prank, it doesn’t mean that the fairies weren’t real …
Aside from the Fairy Godmother in Cinderella, there are countless literary fairies in fiction. Some other famous examples are Tinkerbell from J. M. Barrie’s Peter Pan, Puck from Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream and Princess Ozma from L. Frank Baum’s Oz series.
Here at Hinkler, we encourage you to discover a magical fairy world of your own with the Make and Play: Fairies activity book! You can join in this magical world as this book features pop-out characters (including 2 dress-up dolls with costumes), with backdrop play scenes to colour and use for your fairy adventures, as well as press-out fairy dress-up outfits! The book also includes over 75 stickers, and awesome activities and amazing stickers that are sure to keep you entertained for hours! This bright book is packed with colouring pages, sticker activities, dot-to-dots, spot the differences, drawing fun, and more!
On International Fairy Day, our one wish is you have a truly enchanting day celebrating all things magical. Spread your wings, imagine yourself surrounded in fairy dust, and enjoy this wonderful day in the international calendar.