Fairies are a nature spirits and make their home in the woods. They have a strong connection to magic and can alter their physical appearance, like this one, the Tree Shifter, a fey who uses mimicry to blend into the trees when humans pass by. Like the chameleon and the octopus, the Tree Shifter uses her natural ability to hide within plain sight. As a Watcher for the Troop, she relies on this gift to protect The Wee Folk from human interference.
This dress was made from birch bark that was painted to resemble the American sycamore tree, which has bark that looks naturally camouflaged.
Her corsage is a bit of moss and Trumpet Lichen.
The skirt is made from reindeer moss and bits of usnea.
The dress is stitched up the back with green thread.
This is another commissioned art piece, the fairy that shifts into part of the tree when a predator is near. She is like the octopus in how well she blends with her surroundings and exudes the magic of practical creativity.
Her bodice is made of birch, the symbol of white, meaning change. I hand-painted her colors of a tree I once found in western Maine, swirling with forest and spring greens and yellows. Her corsage is a bit of tree lichen that looks like mini trumpets.
Her skirt is made with different clumps of reindeer moss and adorned with a spidery Spanish moss.
I can custom make these for $25 and they are easy to ship anywhere in the U.S. Contact me if interested.
I'm busy making fairies, literary dresses and miniature scenes for an upcoming Small Works Show that I'll be in this Saturday, October 5. Here are a few of the fairies that will be hanging at this show.
Beach Rose fairy with pink wash on bodice and lichen skirt.
A Tree Shifter made from birch, lichen, moss, fungi and washed with green watercolor.
A fall fairy
See that there? It takes awhile, but I've learned to spot them, the Wee Folk that hide in my back woods.
This is a Dryad, a shape shifting fairy that can take the form of a tree. These are the Watchers of the Forest and they hide in the cover of the woods to search out spots for the troop to inhabit once they come up from the Underground.
Here she is in a better angle.
I made this one specifically from a beautiful old mossy stump I'd seen after hiking in Rangeley last fall and painted the birch bodice with the same kinds of kelly and dark greens.
The upper part of the skirt is adorned with Lobaria pulmonaria, a lichen known as "lung moss" thought to be a medicinal remedy for lung diseases. The underskirt is made from green reindeer moss with tufts of Old Man's Beard for the corsage and pink bud.
Each fairy dress has its own custom bejeweled hanger and is stitched up the back with thread.
Here is a rare glimpse of a Dryad, a shape shifting fairy that can take the form of a tree. These are the Watchers of the Forest, and since the Sidhe rely on the cover of the woods to keep their troops hidden and safe, the Dryads are not to be trifled with. They are not well-disposed to humans given Mankind's abuse of the earth and its resources.
They play a tricks on tree cutters, distracting them away from their tasks. If a lumberjack should cut down a tree in Sidhe territory, it is said in folklore the Dryad will shape shift into a woman and then disappear into tree form when the man give chase. There, alone in the wilderness and cut off, he will meet his fate.
I made this one specifically from an image in my mind after hiking in Rangeley. I'd seen these brilliant greens striations on this kind of stump (I have to link to it because I don't have permission to post it). So, I set out to paint the birch bodice with the same kinds of kelly and dark greens.
The neckline of the bodice is adorned with moss I'd picked from dead stumps in the forest (never from a live tree) and a closed bud of green and white.
The upper part of the skirt is adorned with Lobaria pulmonaria, a lichen known as "lung moss" thought to be a medicinal remedy for lung diseases. The underskirt is made from green reindeer moss with tufts of Old Man's Beard.
This one-of-a-kind fairy dress now lives at Brambles, in Belfast. Be sure to go see their display of all my fairy dresses.
Tonic of the Woods
the inspiration behind the creations
Photos, stories and concept ©Kay Stephens
Look up the story behind a fairy dress by clicking on the name below