We love celebrating summer sprites come June 24th which is international Fairy Day! In celebration, we asked Margaret Bloom, author of Making Peg Dolls, to create a tutorial that's as magical as the fairies themselves.
Let us dance and let us sing,
Dancing in a merry ring,
We’ll be fairies on the green
Sporting round the fairy queen.
Like the seasons of the year
Round we circle in a sphere.
I’ll be summer, you’ll be spring
Dancing in a fairy ring.
Gather Your Supplies
- Peg dolls
- Materials for wings: wool felt, printed computer images, colorful paper, etc.
- Opaque acrylic paints and/or watercolor paints
- Acorn caps
- PVA or white craft glue
- Paint brushes
Painting Skin Tones
The faces of summer fairies shine in every tone of deep brown, golden, and peach.
To reflect diverse skin tone, you can use a diluted shade of brown watercolor to tint the head of your peg doll. Allow to dry completely before proceeding to the next step. For a pale skin tone, leave the head of your doll unpainted.
When you paint hair on your doll, be sure to leave enough space to paint the face. You can lightly sketch an outline of the hair to guide your design before you apply paint.
Paint a Face
Use paint or a pencil to create a face on your doll Create a face with any expression you'd like. Is your fairy feeling happy? Quiet? Sleepy? Excited? If you are not sure how you want to design the face for your fairy, you can practice drawing faces on a piece of paper.
Paint Your Fairy Body
For this tutorial, we chose to paint the bodies of my fairies with ombre gradations, starting with a lighter shade around the shoulders, and transitioning to a darker tone towards the bottom of my dolls. Summer fairies look beautiful painted in any color – especially in your favorite hue!
Use colorful patterned paper and a wing-shaped paper-punch to create wings for these, however wings can be created out of a variety of materials (wool felt, paper, etc…), and in all shapes and sizes!
You can design your own wing shape, find scrapbook paper with images of wings, or google images for “clipart fairy wings” or “clipart butterfly wings.” Once you have cut out a pair of wings, use craft glue to affix the wings to the back of your fairy.
Add an Acorn Cap
The best time to collect acorn caps for fairy hats is in autumn, however, even in summer, if you search beneath oak trees, you are sure to find some fairy hats. Fill your pockets and save the caps in a jar, because you never know when you might encounter a fairy who needs a hat!
Once you get your acorn caps home, try a few of them on your fairy until you find one which fits perfectly, and then put a small bit of glue inside to affix the cap to the head of your fairy.
MARGARET BLOOM is the author of the books Making Peg Dolls, and Making Peg Dolls and More (Hawthorn Press, UK). Her home is a small yellow cottage beneath the tall oak trees of Northern California where she lives with her husband, two sons, two naughty kittens, and more peg dolls than she can count.