Book Fetish

Feel Like a Fairytale Character (Without the Costume)

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Anne Mai Yee Jansen


Anne Mai Yee Jansen is a literature and ethnic studies professor and a lifelong story addict. She exists on a steady diet of books and hot chocolate, with a heaping side of travel whenever possible. Originally hailing from the sun and sandstone of southern California, she currently resides with her partner, offspring, and feline companion in the sleepy mountains of western North Carolina.

Want to feel like a fairytale character — and not just on Halloween? You don’t have to don a cape or glue warts to your face to get a little bit of that fairytale whimsy on a daily basis. In fact, these clothes and accessories can help you channel your favorite fairytales without being too literal. Because, you know, who doesn’t want to cultivate a sense of wonder and carry it with them throughout each day?

When you think of fairytales, maybe you think of Hans Christian Andersen or the Brothers Grimm. Or perhaps you think of all those Technicolor princesses marching across the screen and singing their catchy songs. Or maybe you even think of the stories you heard as a child — stories of magical beanstalks and candy cottages, or stories inflected by your cultural heritage. Whatever your point of reference, the magic of fairytales has an allure that lasts beyond childhood for many people.

Whether you’re feeling innocent or mischievous or downright villainous, have some fun getting dressed in the morning as the nights grow longer this autumn (for those of us in the northern hemisphere, anyway). Get ready to bring a little magic into your days with these enchanting finds.

picture of red apple clutch

This red apple clutch ($47) will have you feeling like Snow White (or the evil witch). It’s available in green and yellow, too.

picture of wicker handbag

Hansel and Gretel would have been better served with this wicker handbag ($62) than their silly little basket. Sturdy and compact, it’ll hold all of your essentials (and maybe a GPS to help you find your way).

picture of black lace fingerless gloves

Add interest to your outfit with these black lace fingerless gloves ($25). They’re sophisticated enough to pass for everyday attire and will have you feeling delightfully witchy in no time.

picture of twig bobby pins

These simple but elegant twig bobby pins ($5 each) will have you looking like you just found your way out of the woods. Except, you know, without the dirt on your face.

picture of moon and star hair clip

Feeling a little witchy? Give this moon and star hair clip ($13) a try.

picture of horn hair clips

These little horn hair clips ($11) are a fun way to unleash your impish impulses. They also keep your hair out of your face so you can show off your devilish grin.

red wool-blend capelet

As the weather turns, prepare for autumn with this red wool-blend capelet ($68). It’s a chic take on Little Red Riding Hood’s famous outerwear. And it’s available in 17 other colors if red’s not your color!

Layered pink tulle skirt with glitter hanging on wall next to photo and flowers

Who needs a crown to feel like a princess? This soft tulle skirt with sequin stars ($42) is a whimsical wear. Available in multiple colors.

picture of brown ankle boots

These brown ankle boots ($220) are a subtle nod to fairytale adventurers — from pirates to witches and everything in between!

picture of clear high heels

For something a little more elegant, treat your inner Cinderella to these clear high heels ($50). They’ll go with your favorite pair of jeans if you don’t feel like ironing your ballgown.

picture of sterling silver druzy quartz rings

Good or Evil? You can be either (or both!) with these sparkly druzy quartz and sterling silver rings ($36–52 each).

picture of engraved gemstone necklaces

Pick your poison: there are nine different options for you to peruse from this colorful array of capricious engraved gemstone necklaces ($45 each).

picture of silver elf ear cuffs

For an understated homage to elves, those most magical of fairytale creatures, give these silver ear cuffs ($67 each or $127 for a pair) a try. No piercings required.

picture of metallic temporary tattoos

These metallic temporary tattoos ($20) are a quick and easy way to add a little fairytale luster to your bod. You get five different designs in this pack.

picture of Ethereal Visions Tarot Deck

Don’t feel like putting on any fairytale garb? Play the mystic instead and pop this beautiful Ethereal Visions Tarot Deck ($26) in your bag. With Art Nouveau influences and gold foil accents, it’s sure to be a crowd pleaser.

Have Some Bread Crumbs Before You Go

Prefer to read your fairytales instead of wearing them? Down the rabbit hole you go:

Once Upon a Time There Were 8 LGBTQ+ Fairytales from 2020

9 Under-the-Radar Fairytale and Folktale Retellings

9 YA Folklore Books from Around the Globe