During a mental break at work one day, I searched aimlessly around Etsy. I decided to see what kind of fairy houses Etsy artists may have available. When I was younger, I made one out of a plastic tree house toy. I had a bed with pillows and blankets made of soft, shiny fabrics. A silver box lid served as a table, because fairies like shiny things, with two origami chairs and some clay dishes and tableware. It worked well enough, even though the main “house” was plastic, and I know my fairy friend appreciated it. Still, I have long been in the market for a good fairy house.
The problem I had been running into was that I found most fairy houses were not houses at all. They were solid blocks of wood or clay, sculpted and decorated and painted to look like a rustic fairy house. Sure, they were natural materials (except when the clay was polymer) and therefore better than my plastic tree house, but they were not actually houses. How can people expect a fairy to live inside of a solid block of wood?
I think fairies like hollows to live in. They make homes in the thick of rose bushes, or in the cradle of the roots of a great oak tree, or well hidden in its branches, or in a hovel dug out of the clay near a small stream. They don’t live inside a living, solid tree or a rock. Even for an intangible being, that just doesn’t make sense. Where would they put the shiny keys and pretty beads and abandoned snail shells that they love to collect? And you can’t invite a guest to your home without giving them a comfortable, safe place to stay. “This is the guest room. It’s not actually a room, it’s just a door painted on the wall. You can’t get in and there’s nothing there anyway, but this is for you, so you know you’re welcome.” Perhaps you can see why I am so confused about this trend.
So, I was browsing the shops, coming across some truly adorable house-looking sculptures until I found Rachel’s Fairy Houses. These houses were actual houses: hollowed out logs, good pieces of bark, with floors and roofs and windows and each had a great big opening so the fairies can fly freely in and out. And once one flies in, I’m sure they’ll stay. Each house had a plethora of tiny little treasures. Soft beds in rich, royal colors. Bookcases stocked with bottles, books, tiny keys, and sparkly charms. Leaf-covered easy chairs and sofas. Wooden tables bedecked with bowls and goblets and tea pots and chairs for tired fairies to sit in. Some houses had writing desks and spell books and telescopes for the stargazers. Some had piles of glass beads and shells and chunks of quartz, pictures and leaves and feathers on the walls. Ferns and vines covered the outside. All had tiny little lights that filled the space inside with a warm, amber glow. And the best part was that each little house had room to place your own offerings and trinkets for the fairies. Just from the pictures, I knew this artist and her creations were special. I knew it so well that I had to drop her a line and tell her so.
Through the next several weeks, I came back to Rachel’s shop often. It was a nice place to take a break from work, to dream about the houses and which one I think my fairy friend would want to live in. Many that I loved were listed and bought before I had a chance to get it. Then, I found one that just called to me. I didn’t have the money for it in the right account so I had to wait for it to transfer, gripped in a crazy kind of fear that it would be bought right out from under me. It wasn’t and, in only a week, my house, the one that was meant for me, arrived on Beltane. It couldn’t have been planned, it just happened to work out that way.
Shortly after purchasing my house and while waiting for it to arrive, I thought about the things I knew the artist could make that weren’t in my particular house, like the open spell book or desk with ink and quill. A new house she had listed featured a tiny fairy telescope and I really wanted that. I am a stargazer myself, some friends call me Skywatcher and expect me to know what is going on in the sky at all times. What I didn’t know was that the pictures on my work computer were coming up so dark that I couldn’t see all the details very well. It worked out better for me, because my breath caught when I unwrapped the part were the fairy telescope sat on its tripod.
I’ve been saving up tiny things to add to my house. A few pieces of quartz from the local quartz vein, a crystal point, a tiny snail shell I found the day after buying the house while visiting my parents. I almost wish I didn’t have plans tonight, because I want to sit with my house and feel how happy my fairy friend is with it. I think a few fairies may have come for the journey, because my cat, Miss Luna was madly chasing something I couldn’t see until I got the house up and out of the cat’s reach. I also started writing a story inspired by Rachel’s Fairy Houses, before I had one of my own, knowing it would be featured when I did have one.
I remember being surprised that she seems to have a few repeat customers. These houses are expensive, in the grand scheme of things (but they are worth so much more than the price), and it amazed me that people keep coming back for more. I already know I am going to be one of those people. This artist has a gift, an eye for things in the Fairy Realm. You can feel the attention and the love that goes into her work. You can feel the care in the details, in the thorough wrapping to protect it while shipping. And you know she takes pride in her work and strives to satisfy her customers. I’m no longer surprised that people keep coming back. I’m already planning.