This is the story of a forty something woman, a lifelong creator and her brilliant, if not timely executed plan to make the most incredible gifts ever. That woman was my mother, the gifts were for my youngest sister and her best friend. Those gifts were: the ultimate Harry Potter spell book and a potions kit to match. Luckily, I get to share these with you today as part of the Harry Potter Magic tour from Rae Gun Ramblings
I don’t think I can tell this story without telling you about my mother a little. She’s eccentric, cluttered, highly creative, and she thinks beyond the outside of the box. She sees possibilities in milk jug rings, where I see recycling. In this case, my little sis was about 12. HP had just gotten really started in the US, and she was mad into all the greatness of the Harry Potter world. So my mom launched into the most intense handmades. She worked on these gifts on and off for a few years, falling in and out of interest in them, until eventually the girls were too old, and she wasn’t interested in finishing them anymore.
She started with 2 big encyclopedias. From there, she glued the pages of the back 1/4 of the book down near the spine. She then painstakingly cut out a big rectangle in the last 1/4 of the books pages with an exacto knife at a rate of about 5-10 pages at a time, making sure they lined up as she went. After they were cut, she glued the rest of the pages together creating the secret compartment. She removed a few extra pages and applied a thick cardstock page for the compartments closure. Now, that is cool enough as it is. But in 2000, in a small Oregon town, she was having trouble finding the good glue. She went through several different kinds all the time trying to find a good combination to make the pages stay put as she treated them and added spells.
She moved on to changing a simple encyclopedia into an intense book of arcane knowledge. She used tea to stain regular paper to make it appear aged and parchment like. Some of these pages were photocopies of actual spells from library books, and some of them were blank for assignments, notes and personal writings of the girls. I remember going into our “craft” space seeing all these pieces of paper drying. She had a hard time keeping it from my sister. (little note for reference: there are 9 years between me and my sis, so I was a bit jealous, I never got things quite this cool)
She added tabs with ric rac accents, painted and stained other pages, inserted magazine cutting collage style for anthropology studies, and left pressed flowers and pictures of pressed fairies inside.
Here is where the project comes to me 14 years later. My sister arrived at my house with 2 large boxes of supplies. There were 2 spell books and enough supplies for 2 large potions kit. My mother decked out there kit with real essential oils from the spells she copied. She made basilisk skin from snake print tissue paper glued to metallic tissue paper. This gave it a crinkly dried reptile skin feel and a sheen of magic. brilliant.
There were little candles, little bottles and she told me, she even has little cauldrons somewhere. oy vey.
The books were not quite done. They needed a little TLC as well since they had been in storage for a good decade. So I used Mod Podge and craft glues to fix edges, repair tears, and apply pages. Each extra page is delicately placed to appear as though it belongs.
An encyclopedia cover is kinda lame as a spell book, and you could use paper to cover it I suppose, but a true Harry Potter manual would have been leather bound. Just so, Mom covered the books in leather and suede creating a leather and paper coat of arms from the Hogwarts standard. Thus creating a true spell book!
For each of the potions kits, she got those simple wooden boxes you can find at Micheal’s in the wood burning section. Within each box there are 10+ essential oils, candles and a small pewter holder, spiders, a critter box, basilisk skin, apothecary mixing bottles, myrrh gum, various dried herbs, and a jar of eyeballs. And she acquired all this x2. Then, as is now, she traded with other crafters. She is a massage therapist, so she traded with an herbalist for all the oils, bottles, and herbs. They were all stored so well that they are still very good quality essential oils. I am looking forward to adding them to candles and lotions and such.
While this is a loose guide to making your own, I thought you should have a spell or two to coordinate with your own HP endeavors.
1 dram jasmine oil
1/2 dram orange oil
1/2 dram apple oil
5 coriander seeds
5 dried rose petals
blend in an enamel pan on very low heat. let cool and place in a small bottle with lid.
Faery Fire oil
1 dram dragons blood
1 dram almond oil
warm all ingredients in an enamel pan on low heat. Allow to cool and place in a clear, white, or aqua-colored bottle
Happy Birthday a day late to Harry. He and Hawley share the day and so we always say a Happy day towards one of our favorite stories forever. While I am the last stop on this awesome tour, go check out all of the previous awesome crafts! Details at Rae Gun Ramblings. There is a great giveaway too! keep scrolling for the rafflecopter giveaway! Get on it!
One lucky winner will get a fantastic Harry Potter prize pack including a Make Love Not Horcruxes shirt and Hogwarts House Tie Necklace from Rae Gun, A Geeky Pillow from Heart Felt Designs, Death Eater Stamp from Viky, A pair of Harry Potter Shoes from Hogswarts Unlimited, An Accio Book Bag and Potter Necklace from Pieces by Polly, a Mischief Managed Thought Bubble from Green Girl Art, and a 50$ Amazon.com gift card! Also 4 others will get a Death Eater stamp.