It’s tempting to cup one’s hands around these beautiful figurines, but take care – Kathrinchen Zimtstern, the Strawberry Fairy and their many brothers and sisters are tiny, measuring no more than four centimetres tall. They have been carved, glued and painted by hand in minute detail. All have flaxen hair: blonde plaits, tousled curls, pinned in bunches or flowing loose in ringlets, like Cinderella.
How the hairstyles are created is known only to the Flade workshop in Olbernhau, in the Erzgebirge mountains. There is, however, nothing secret about the dedication and passion that Kerstin Flade-Drechsel, the managing director and creative force behind the figures, puts into her work. Flade-Drechsel, who is a native of the Erzgebirge region, originally studied museology but was forced to rethink her career options following the changes brought about by German reunification.