SavvyPicks for Every Knight in Shining Armor and His Princess

Amy Rees
October 22, 2008

Whether in fairy tales or from movies or seemingly by osmosis from the air at preschool, little ones are abuzz with princesses. And knights. And anything royal and medieval at all, really. Sometimes bossy and sometimes entitled, often fierce and always delightfully vivid, these little princesses and their knights in shining armor win our hearts day in and day out. 

All our Savvy ideas for your little princess (and so much more) are found on our books, toys and more section, but here are some especially wonderful ideas for your little knights and princesses that are (dare we say it?) off the beaten drawbridge:

Knight's Armor -- Consider this essential costume material for anyone living in a house with a moat or anyone routinely pressed into princely service by a preschool classroom full of princess fanatics. Really, who doesn't need an iron faceguard, breastplate, shield and sword these days?

Pop-Up Medieval Castle Book/Playhouse -- This series of tie-back books that open into the most magnificent pop-up paper playhouses merits a spot in the Savvy book and toy Hall of Fame. Which we don't have but really ought to! Anyway, this is a great toy, a lifesaver for travel (which otherwise is challenging with heavily fortressed stone houses), and basically the world's most cost-effective (paper) doll house. All knights and princesses will adore it!

Do Princesses Wear Hiking Boots? -- Indulge the glitter and the gauze, the veils and the disaster-inducing slippers, and then bring it all together with the other aspects of your little one. The part of her that loves to get muddy. The part of her that loves being outside as much as she loves being up in her imaginary castle turret. She is certainly all of those parts, unabashedly, and this book helps you (and she) make perfect sense of all of them. The surprise on the last page makes a point that no grown-up lessons could ever make so well.

Walt Disney's Cinderella -- If you are a bit, ahem, conflicted about the sparkly hot pink and purple plastic stuff that has become code for the Cinderella story, permit the folks from Disney to redeem themselves here. They have revived Mary Blair's original story board illustrations from the making of the Cinderella movie and paired them with a gorgeous retelling of the tale by Cynthia Rylant, to great effect. Magical effect, even - without the twin sledgehammers of neon and glitter. The sophisticated tale is a true romance ("Who can say by what mystery two people find each other in this great wide world?"), and Blair's paintings suggest just enough to let a little one's imagination fill in the details. This one is a keeper, indeed.

Puff, the Magic Dragon -- Because castles need dragons like firehouse need Dalmatians. Puff is essential, and no version of the story or song tells the tale more charmingly than this one. Yes, you'll weep through the song (and then you won't be able to get it out of your head), but the story keeps going where the heartbreak of the song leaves off. A lovely book and CD indeed.

From the Parents

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