Woof, woof – Aviendo Fairy Tales let them out. Because these three puppies are the latest in a line of Danish design figures inspired by Hans Christian Andersen’s fairy tales. But wait, the dogs are more than just design trinkets.
The soldier climbed into the tree. A thread of sunlight lit three doors inside the trunk. He opened the first door. A dog with eyes the size of teacups sat on a large chest. The soldier talked softly to the dog and lifted it onto the apron. The dog licked his hand, curled up, and went to sleep.
The Tinderbox is one of the first fairy tales published by Hans Christian Andersen. It is a story so captivating that it has endured for almost two hundred years. In the tale, three dogs help a soldier win a kingdom and a princess. Now, Danish design company Aviendo Fairy Tales present three wooden figures and a book bringing the fairy tale to life in the 21st century. CEO of Aviendo, Anders Nielsen, explains why:
“The Tinderbox is a splendid story with a moral that should be remembered. The soldier gains friends when he suddenly becomes rich, but the friends disappear when he ends up poor again. The three dogs, however, stay true to him. We believe you need to take care of your true friends, choose them wisely, and stick by them in times of need.”
What was that about a book?
Aviendo offers different wooden design figures from Hans Christian Andersen’s stories. Apart from The Dogs, they also have The Ugly Duckling and The Nightingale. Each figure can be bought with a beautifully illustrated book, re-telling the fairy tale.
“Sometimes you just want to put digital media aside and read a story with your children. The books contain questions about each chapter that can be talked about and in that sense, I hope the figures and books can build a bridge between generations and create lasting memories. Because, at Aviendo, we don’t want to be yet another company that makes wooden figures just for the sole purpose of decoration,” Anders Nielsen says.
That is why each figure has a “surprise element.” For instance, the Nightingale also works as a flute, while The Ugly Duckling and The Dogs can change expression simply by moving around the beak, the body or the head. Also, they all have a Nordic feel to them in their design.
The animal figures and the books are popular as gifts – especially for christenings. However, they have also become a hit at Danish airports. Tourists buy them as a piece of Denmark to take home – to remind themselves of their own fairy tale in the small Northern kingdom. That makes Anders Nielsen happy. Especially since Aviendo is expanding in different countries.
“Our main market is Denmark, but at the same time we are now focusing more on entering new markets and our products are now being sold in Asia, North America and around Europe,” Anders Nielsen says.
The three dogs are made of beech wood and BPA-free silicone. The eyes come in walnut, stainless steel or brass to remind of how the dogs guarded chests of copper, silver and gold in the fairy tale. The accompanying book is available in English, German and Danish. It will be in stores at the end of November, while the three dogs are available now.