F Do Fairy Tales Inspire You? | tamdoll's workspace

Do Fairy Tales Inspire You?

May 8, 2009
Every two weeks the Etsy Bloggers team puts up a blog post suggestion and for the May 8th deadline the question was: “What is your favorite fairy tale? Any parallels to real life?” I love are fairy tales and how they usually revolve [if not around castles] trees and forests… there’s usually the mystery of nature in the story.

As far as parallels to real life – I’m thinking as I write this – maybe it’s the allure of nature that a Brooklyn girl might have growing up surrounded by concrete.  Or maybe it’s the fantasy of magic and handsome princes.  I like to think there’s magic everywhere if you look close enough.  Or don’t look…. you might just see it in the corner of your eye.

I’m not 100% sure I have a favorite fairy tale.  What I do love are to read the original translated stories instead of the watered-down animated versions.  I love modern re-tellings of fairy tales, with a twist.  Yesterday I was looking at the beans in my garden and naturally, Jim Jack & The Beanstalk came to mind.  One of the best movies I’ve seen is Jim Henson's "Jack and the Beanstalk - The Real Story", a 2001 movie starring Matthew Modine as Jack’s descendant.  Over 3 hours long & very entertaining and creative. 

Here’s a fairy tale that translated into art for me – It started out when I read the book Enchantment by Orson Scott Card.  I passed it onto my mother who mentioned that she’d heard of the character Baba Yaga when she was a little girl.   That same week my kids brought home a book from the library, Vasilisa the Beautiful, where the Russian girl meets… Baba Yaga.  The icing on the cake was when I came across a pattern to make a Vasilisa/Baba Yaga topsy-turvy doll.  I bought the pattern without a second thought and it took me 6 months to complete the doll – take a look at some pictures here.

Just one more book – Sheri Tepper’s Beauty.  It was a little creepy and sad, but I love how it ties together Sleeping Beauty with other fairy tales (& I won’t say anymore about it in case you’re going to read it!)

I really, really love reading these books, do you have any to suggest or share?


  1. They don't really inspire my artwork, but I enjoyed reading Women Who Run With The Wolves. I loved reading about fairytales from a feminist perspective.


  2. I love fairytales and they do inspire me tho! Thank you for sharing this...i love reading this post lots! Hope your having a wonderful weekend! Love to you!

  3. Yes, fairy tales, mythological stories, stories of people I know...they all are an inspiration to me when I design.

  4. Interesting post. I'm not sure I'm directly inspired by fairy tales, but I think they inspire us all indirectly.


  5. Thank you all for your comments! I'm thinking about this some more and maybe it's that some fairy tales are like our reality - with some magic thrown in. How nice it would be to imagine that bean thrown into a garden could lead to a magical place, or that we're all princesses in disguise.

  6. Thanks for the feature, and if there is anything you want you get a special etsybloggers discount!

  7. isn't it amazing how things tie together. And of course there were 3 events! What a wild looking topsy tursy doll! Fun posts and a lot of neat links!


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