Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Build a Fairy House

At our family reunion in May, I showed some of my great-nieces and nephews how to make a fairy house. They loved it--it's not difficult to do, and the folklore says that if you make the fairies happy in your garden, they will reward you with beautiful flowers and vegetables. So why not make a fairy house--just in case you have some homeless fairies in your garden?

Here's the one we built:

And here you can see how tiny it is:

We used scraps of bark, twigs, stones, bits of moss, acorns, and other woodland debris to construct the house. The we moved a few wildflowers (violets, bluets, and cinquefoil) to pretty it up, and it was done.

Afterwards the kids made several more, I heard, but I didn't see them because they were in secret places.

As for how to see a fairy, here is some advice, as posted on the Herb Companion:

To enable one to see the Fairies: A pint of sallet oyle and put it into a vial glasse; and first wash it with rose-water and marygolde water; the flowers to be gathered towards the east. Wash it till the oyle becomes white, then put into the glasse, and then put thereto the budds of hollyhocke, the flowers of marygolde, the flowers or toppes of wild thyme, the budds of young hazle, and the thyme must be gathered neare the side of a hill where fairies use to be; and take the grasse of a fairy throne; then all these put into the oyle in the glasse and sette it to dissolve three dayes in the sunne and then keep it for thy use. -from A Garden of Herbs, by Eleanour Sinclair Rohde

And from Eleanour's book (published on the Gutenberg Project's website):

And what of the fairies in those gardens? We live in such a hurrying, material age that even in our gardens we seem to have forgotten the fairies, who surely have the first claim on them. Does not every child know that fairies love thyme and foxgloves and the lavish warm scent of the old cabbage rose? Surely the fairies thronged to those old herb-gardens as to a familiar haunt. Can you not see them dancing in the twilight?
Ready to make your fairy house now? I think I'll mosey out into the woods and see what I can find to make one for my garden.

Many people make these little houses now, and some get really elaborate. If you'd like to see others, here are a few links:

Simple, family-friendly instructions for building a fairy house, by Family Fun magazine.

Some pretty fancy ones on this website.

There are also people creating entire fairy gardens:

How to create a fairy garden--instructions!

A fairy garden from the Herb Companion website.

And of course, you can buy kits, fairy furniture and just about anything else you like!


Rob said...

Just found your site and I am a new follower. Looking forward to repeat visits._Rob

Granny Sue said...

You are welcome anytime, Rob :)

Granny Kate said...

I like this on several levels. I wholeheatedly believe in otherkin, the fae, the wee folk. Whether or not they would live in little bark houses, they would be honored to know that someone gave them such a gift.

I also like that this would help keep the magic alive in children of all ages, including the inner child in the adult helping to build the fairy house.

And, the magic of story, the magic of art, and the magic of nature all blend seamlessly in this activity.


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