Once upon a time you likely fell in love with a fairy tale or fable. Why not choose a tattoo design that captures the essence of your childhood? Tell your own body story and get inspired with one of the following 5 fairy tale and fable plots and you’ll never have to close the book on your youth or imagination. In other words, these tattoos live on happily ever after.

1. Alice in Wonderland

Once she fell down that great big hole, Alice discovered a wonderland filled with the Mad Hatter, the Queen of Hearts, the Cheshire Cat, and a caterpillar all sharing philosophy and wisdom that helps Alice understand what is happening in her real life. From the popular movie adaption starring Johnny Depp to the beloved original book, Alice in Wonderland tattoos is one of the most popular fairy tale and fable tattoo choices. For a verse or quote, design considers “We’re all mad here.”

2. Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs

Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs
Fairy Tale Tattoos. Snow white courtesy Getty Images. Snow White courtesy Getty Images.

Jealousy is pure evil as depicted in the tale of Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs. As a princess living under the roof of her evil stepmother, Snow White falls prey to her deviant ways. After stumbling into her stepmother who’s disguised as an old woman offering a shiny apple for Snow White to eat, she takes a bite and falls into a near-eternal slumber in the depths of the forest. Once the seven dwarfs named Sneezy, Sleepy, Dopey, Doc, Happy, Bashful, and Grumpy stumble upon her, she is taken to her home where she eventually wakes to the Prince’s true love kiss. For a script tattoo, consider the quote “Who is the Fairest of them All.”

3. Beauty and the Beast

A tale of love being naked to the eye, Beauty and the Beast tells the story of Belle, whose father is sadly captured by a beast in the forest who demands his daughter in turn for his freedom. Once arriving at the castle and entertaining the disfigured and ugly man at dinners and dancing, Beauty slowly begins to care for him despite his monstrous appearance. They fall in love before his 21st birthday, just in time to break the evil spell cast upon him. He returns to his handsome self and they live happily ever after. For design ideas consider his servants, the clock, candlestick, or teapot, or opt for a lyrical quote such as “Tale as old as time.”

4. The Ugly Duckling

Danish author and beloved poet Hans Christian Anderson’s tale of The Ugly Duckling is a truly humbling story. Born into a family of beautifully feathered birds, the ugly duckling must strive to find radical acceptance despite constant ridicule from his peers for looking different. Once the duckling comes to accept himself for who he is and his appearance, he grows not into a duck as one would expect, but instead the most beautiful swan of all. For an Ugly Duckling verse tattoo that inspires personal acceptance, consider the quote “Please yourself.”

5. Red Riding Hood

When sent through the forest by her mother to deliver a care basket to Grandma, Little Red Riding Hood comes face to face with a ferocious wolf disguised as her Grandma. Whether you are battling your own angry demons or simply want to celebrate and encourage bravery in the face of a mad beast, a Red Riding Hood tattoo design can incorporate many design aspects from tree designs to an angry wolf. For a script tattoo, consider the quote “The prettier the flower, the farther from the path.”

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