Not All Fairies can Fly

06 Aug

I first fell in love with Samantha Bryan’s Fairies in the early 2000s when I saw an exhibition in the Craft Centre and Design Gallery in Leeds.   The invention, the humour, the whole premise and the beautiful construction  entranced me and I bought my first Fairy. Who knew that fairies don’t simply fly but have to learn? That they wear L plates to warn others of their inexperience? That they need various intricate contraptions to help them learn to fly? That they do stretching exercises before setting off on their roller boots, or with a lifting device, under an air balloon or with a propellor? That they need special protective equipment? My quirky collection of ‘Brains Fairy Aiding Inventions’ shows all these and more.

My first Fairy

Fairy doing an exercise designed to strengthen leg muscles in preparation for impact during landing

Fairy doing an exercise designed to strengthen leg muscles in preparation for impact during landing

Waiting for repaired wings and looking a bit sad 2004

Air balloon assistance

Beautiful detail

I love her pleased expression

Brain’s revolutionary V.T.O.L. Apparatus (assists fairies in vertical take-off and landing) 2003

Improved pedal powered fairy vehicle

All the Fairies have labels typed on an old typewriter adding to the quaintness of the whole.


When I retired from teaching in 2006, I was also mentoring student teachers and commissioned Samantha to make me a Fairy piece showing a Fairy being encouraged in her efforts to become fully fledged and ready to go out on her own.  Samantha sent me four beautiful designs that she had sketched and  this is the one I chose.

Mentor with fairy in training 2006

It’s time I added to my collection!


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5 responses to “Not All Fairies can Fly

  1. commonprose

    August 7, 2020 at 5:12 pm

    Lovely collection, Sally! Hope to see them someday.

  2. utesmile

    August 7, 2020 at 7:29 am

    They are absolutely sweet. Great detail and such fun.

  3. Samantha Bryan

    August 6, 2020 at 9:11 pm

    Wow, I hadn’t realised how big your collection was. So lovely to be virtually reunited. All my work flies away. So this documents fairy history and development. Wonderful!



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