Make a fairy land light table

Embrace the dark nights and welcome the winter by using these ideas to make a fairy land light table – wonderful for imaginative, sensory play.

What a wonderful idea for dark nights: make a fairy land using fairy lights. Lovely for imaginary play.Make a fairy land light table

It’s that time of year when the nights are drawing in and we’re starting to feel the call of cosy days at home. It’s beginning to go dark here in the late afternoon, when there’s still so much playing time left in the day. And, rather than complain that we can’t play outside so much, we’re welcoming the seasonal change and looking for ways to play indoors that really complement the coming winter. This fairy land makes use of a dark, neglected corner of our home, and fills it with magical light and imaginary play. And it’s really easy, and inexpensive, to make.

make a fairy landAs an alternative to an expensive light table,  I used some recycled cardboard packaging and one string of fairy lights to make this fairy land. To begin with I painted a dark winter sky and a grassy meadow onto a piece of a cardboard box. I used acrylic paint to give good coverage and provide a robust surface for lots of play.

fairy land paintThen I used one string of twenty fairy lights to make some stars in the night sky. I used a pencil (not the light bulb!) to poke a holes in the cardboard and then gently pushed the fairy lights through.

{Please think of safety first. I used brand new fairy lights, suitable for indoor use, of a kind which do not get hot. The fairy land is placed in a corner of our playroom, right next to an electric socket, so we have no cables trailing anywhere they could be a trip hazard. And I’m around and supervising the children any time they are playing here.}

fairy lights boxThen we added in some items to play with. The little pixies and tree are Christmas decorations, the sweet red houses are are candle holders.  All are from Hobbycraft. You could also make your own fairies and houses – take a look at the links at the end of this post to see how.

fairy land pixie landThe mushroom is from Cherry Menlove’s online store – and it lights up!

make a fairy land

The fairy land is fun to play with at any time, but once it’s dark outside and the lights are turned on, it becomes a really special place.

fairy toadstoolI’ve set it up in an under-used corner of our play room. We usually have this space set up as a book nook, but the children prefer to use the sofa for stories nowadays, so this corner was rather neglected. Now though, lit with the fairy lights, it’s like a magnet, pulling children in to investigate and play!

make a fairy land with fairy lights | NurtureStore

I have placed the fairy land on an upturned box to give it stability, and set it alongside a nice big cushion, so there’s somewhere comfortable to sit. You’ll notice there’s an extra sting of fairy lights above too.  A piece of net curtain pegged to a washing line provides a soft canopy overhead, making this a really cosy, welcoming spot to enjoy the sensory lights, and some imaginary play.

More fairy land ideas

For more magical ideas you can use to add extra elements to your fairy land, you might like to:

make a magic wand

make a fairy doll

make a fairy house

make a fairy land

super sensory footerSuper Sensory Invitations to Play

Ready for a whole year of exploring through the senses? Super Sensory Invitations to Play is a delightful resource that encourages your children to explore the five senses through the year, using a wide variety of sensory materials. It includes 52 invitations to play, linked to the festivals and seasons of the year, and including water, ice, dough, rice, paints, sand, sensory tubs, and more.

They are easy, simple, and fun ideas that you can use right now to give a multi-sensory boost to your play and learning. It comes with a printable recipe book featuring all our favourite recipes for play. Come and see more here.


  1. Adele says

    This is such a beautiful idea Cathy I love it! I need to pop to hobby craft to get some little friends if our own xx

  2. says

    This is such a lovely idea! I love the coziness of the lights in the photos. I can imagine lots of imaginative and narrative play happening in such a nice place.

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