The Fabrics of Fairytale: Stories Spun from Far and Wide

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The weaving of fabulous worlds, with words and with fabrics, has occupied humans from all countries and cultures for thousands of years. This stunning collection brings you the best of these yarns, spun through the ages by communities near and far.

When an Armenian prince becomes a prisoner, his very life rests on his carpetweaving skills -- but can he also use his talents to aid his escape? On the island of Maui, a young woman's ghost cannot rest until the beautiful red feather...

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Overview

The weaving of fabulous worlds, with words and with fabrics, has occupied humans from all countries and cultures for thousands of years. This stunning collection brings you the best of these yarns, spun through the ages by communities near and far.

When an Armenian prince becomes a prisoner, his very life rests on his carpetweaving skills -- but can he also use his talents to aid his escape? On the island of Maui, a young woman's ghost cannot rest until the beautiful red feather cloak that she was making before she died is finished. And Khaim Yankl, who sews his life savings into the patches of a tatty old patchwork coat, has a nasty shock one day when a beggar calls at the door. From the humble rags of the poor man to the luxurious robes of the king, from common flax to magical fabric won from a seven-headed serpent, the rich patterns of life are wonderfully captured in each of these tales.

Tanya Robyn Batt's lively description of disguise and deception, romance and revenge, are interlaced with Rachel Griffin's magical melange of textures and materials. Together, the words and illustrations create the warp and weft of fairy tale itself, forming a glittering tapestry of enchantment that will appeal to all ages.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Elaborate fabric collages dress up this collection of stories gathered from around the world. Author and artist, respectively a New Zealander and a Brit making their American debuts, work together closely to highlight the unusual unifying theme--textiles. For the Chinese tale "The Silk Brocade," for instance, Batt begins by explaining the history of silk and how it is made. Griffin's busy borders, meanwhile, stitch in Chinese stamps, map fragments, tiny skeins of silk, snippets of artwork and so on, while larger panels and a final full-page spread depict characters and scenes from the story, all picked out in a profusion of embroidery, sequins, buttons, beads and so on. The same format, with different materials selected to suit, follows for stories from Armenia ("Clever Anaeet"), where the subject is carpet weaving; East Africa (the Swahili tale "The Cloth of the Serpent Pembe Mirui") with its tradition of brightly patterned cottons and raffia cloth; Indonesia ("The Crocodile's Blessing") with its Javanese batik; and more. An intriguing way to introduce lesser-known folktales and the cultures from which they derive. Ages 8-up. (Sept.) Copyright 2000 Cahners Business Information.|
Children's Literature
Fabrics and fairytales make a natural pair. Throughout history, people fulfilled their need to preserve their culture by telling stories and by making cloth. Fabrics are both functional and beautiful. Stories are both fanciful and moralistic. Cloth items—from carpets to coats—have intricate stories to tell. Rachel Griffin's breathtaking artwork uses a mixture of handmade papers, beads, stamps, and other media. Tanya Batt brings folklore vibrantly to life. There is the Armenian prince engaged to a wise shepherdess who insists that he learn a trade before they can wed. His carpetweaving skills later save the kingdom. A Swahili woman's insistence that her husband brave a sevenheaded serpent to bring her cloth teaches us not to doubt another's love. A poor Jewish man leaves his village to do odd jobs. He sews his proceeds into his patched coat. Years later he returns home but his wife mistakenly gives the coat to a beggar. He gives the beggar a new coat in exchange for the ragged one with its hidden fortune. And in a version of the Cinderella story, an Indonesian woman is kind to a crocodile, wears beautiful clothes to a village party, and marries the son of the village head. This book is a work of art and is sure to please. 2000, Barefoot Books, Ages 9 to 12, $19.99. Reviewer: Julie Steinberg
School Library Journal
K-Gr 5--In this captivating collection, Batt skillfully weaves together folktales from around the world with fascinating information about the various materials that play an important role in the stories. For example, "Clever Anaeet," a tale from Armenia in which a clever king saves his own life by weaving a secret message into a rug, is introduced by background about carpet weaving in the Caucasus and Persia. A description of textiles from the Pacific Islands precedes a selection from Hawaii that explains how the first feather cloak was made and given to a ruler. Also included are "The Cloth of the Serpent Pembe Mirui" (Swahili), "The Silk Brocade" (Chinese), "The Three Fayes" (Swedish), "The Patchwork Coat" (Jewish), and "The Crocodile's Blessing" (Indonesian). Although many of these tales are available elsewhere, these lively retellings are filled with visual images, skillfully paced, and accompanied by source notes. The stunning, full-page appliqu artwork illustrates each story and evokes the culture from which it comes. Each spread is designed to draw attention to the intricate border patterns made from materials such as ribbon, buttons, stamps, and homemade paper. While younger children will delight in listening to these tales, older readers will want to enjoy them on their own so that they can pore over the pictures.-Nancy Call, Santa Cruz Public Libraries, Aptos, CA Copyright 2000 Cahners Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781841480619
  • Publisher: Barefoot Books
  • Publication date: 9/1/1900
  • Series: Fairytale Series
  • Pages: 80
  • Age range: 6 - 12 Years
  • Product dimensions: 9.42 (w) x 11.34 (h) x 0.50 (d)

Table of Contents

Introduction 6
Clever Anaeet: Armenian 10
The Cloth of the Serpent Pembe Mirui: Swahili 20
The Silk Brocade: Chinese 30
The Feather Cloak: Hawaiian 42
The Three Fayes: Swedish 52
The Patchwork Coat: Jewish 62
The Crocodile's Blessing: Indonesian 72
Sources and Bibliography 80
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