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About five years ago Efteling park shops were selling paper cut-out models of four buildings from the Fairytale Forest. From these you could assemble replicas of Hans & Grietje huisje (Hansel & Gretel house), Kabouterhuisje (Gnomes house), Paleis van de Fakir (flying Fakir) and Kasteel van Doornroosje (Sleeping Beauty castle) all to a scale of 1:30.

Models

They did not seem to sell well, which was a pity as they could be made up into attractive, colourful models. The castle, in fact, was far more accurate than the ceramic version that is now on sale. I think that the problem was that although they would obviously have appealed to children, these models were probably too difficult for a young child to build. Also, the building instructions were poor, and the fit of some parts could have been better, even though the artwork was very good.

Disney had a similar experience when, many years ago, they sold a cut-out model of Cinderella Castle. This proved to be too complicated, and if the builder made a mistake the model could easily be ruined. It was quickly withdrawn from sale, and surviving copies are expensive.

I still think that there is room for some well designed paper models of Efteling landmarks. Think of a large paper model of the Fata Morgana building, or Villa Volta or (more difficult) the House of the Five Senses. Some of the Disney fan websites have made available for download some wonderful paper models of Disney castles and park attractions. Surely there is a graphic artist out there somewhere who could do something similar for Efteling?

 

With thanks to David. H.

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