FAIRYTALEZ.COM grew up from an idea to the world’s biggest fairy tales library in English for less than two years. You could read there old stories from Far East to the New world – all free and with no ads.
The owner wanted quick and lean start based on an existing WordPress template he already owned keeping the same structure and layout. They already had a logo and wanted to polish it a bit too.
If you want your children to be intelligent, read them fairy tales. If you want them to be more intelligent, read them more fairy tales.
— Albert Einstein
“Once upon a time there was an accountant called Bianki from Varezze. Six days of the week he traveled all over the Italy selling medicines… Every Sunday he got back home and every Monday he hit the road again. At the door his little girl always reminded him:
“Please dad, don’t forget: every evening I want a magic story!” Yes, because this girl couldn’t fall asleep without a fairy tale… and wherever Mr Bianki happened to be, every evening exactly at nine o’clock he called to his little girl to tell her a bedtime story…”
— Telephone tales by Gianni Rodari
We are all busy working but our little ones need us. Even far from home we can share some magic moments just like Mr. Bianki did, though this time over the Internet.
Fairytalez.com is helping people been closer to their children by offering free access to huge amount of classical fairy tales from all over the world. Stories are organized by authors, collections and regions.
Website is specially optimized to allow people read artistically at easy. Readability was pursued for desktop and mobile screens.
Users could create their own collections, to share or print the stories and (soon!) even to publish their fairy tales.
Most designers would feel the trill even only thinking what if project like this lands on their desk. Fairy world livens up with all these gorgeous illustrations, initials and magical typography…
This is fantastic opportunity but once limitations came in light fairytalez.com cast quite a different light.
Layout, navigation, structure and functionality of the website was predefined by the theme we’ve started with. Owner’s ambition to create as big as possible online repository of fairy tales with only few people in the team and tight budget didn’t allow having many illustrations on story pages, for most of the stories not even one. Custom illustrations and typography was unrealistic at that stage.
Website offers to its readers 2000+ fairy tales. It’s hard for editors to supply that many illustrations. Inspired by old books endpapers I went for series of backgrounds patterns.
Going further I’ve created a library with silhuette pictures which could be used as tail pieces. The choice was highly influenced by Arthur Rackham silhouettes illustrations.
Depending on the story mood or category the editor has choice to spice up the story page.
Typography was very carefully selected in order to achieve excellent readability and two distinct voices – the one of the storyteller (Alegreya) and the other of the editor & blogger (Lato).
Once in a lifetime everyone should plant a tree
says a Bulgarian proverb and in my view initiative like this plants forests and am happy I had the chance to be part of this project.