Monday, September 29, 2014

Quidditch Sketch

Just a quick sketch of how I think the field might look.  In theory, the players would stand or sit in the middle,  maybe on one of the benches,  and throw bean bags into their respective hoops. The seekers from each team would be looking for the snitch in the box of ping pong balls blindfolded (snitch would have some puff paint texture)
This is all in theory.  Need to do some beta testing once I've built the hoops. 

Sunday, September 28, 2014

House Cup Turner

So to keep track of who is currently winning the house cup, I figured out this fun little thing.  Found it at the thriftstore--it's meant to be for family photos, of which there were still some in there (note to self--take pictures out before donating stuff).  Anyway, printed off some squares with the crests, and a few adjectives of each house.  Will work to change who's winning, and kind of fun to spin.  Not that I did that...for awhile...nope...

Potion Prizes

Made a stop at the dollar store and picked up several little items.  But I found a bunch of small hand sanitizers (3 for $1) with different tints.  Decided to try a project I found online a while back.  Just took off the label, and made some small labels with potions from Harry Potter; then printed it out on sticker paper.  Cut them out with decorative scissors, and then grouped them into sets of three.

Saturday, September 27, 2014


Tried out a slight variation on the coasters--got some larger tiles for trivets!  I went with all the same ones--I really liked the four houses emblem I found amidst getting lost in Harry Potter images.  I still have some felt feet to put on them, and they'll go on as soon as a few coats of mod podge dries.

Also did another set of coasters, this time of my own designed classes.

Grimm Mugs

Got the grimm mugs done today once we were done working on the Fat Lady backdrop.  Looked up a few ideas for tea leaves and we both set to  Was feeling pleased with my heart...until I saw Sarah's fish.  It was then that it seemed best to back away from the Sharpie and let Sarah take over --much more skilled at this medium.  They all turned out awesome...I'm not entirely sure that we'll give them away...want them ALL....

Saturday, September 20, 2014


A few sketches of the gravestones; realistic designs I think.  I want them to be pretty basic ones that I can potentially add on small items before painting.  Most are just basic boxes with a few layers of a stand.  I'm also trying to stretch the styrafoam a bit--though it turned out not to be too terribly expensive, the glue to put them together is a bit more.


The first pass at the gravestones got done today.  Not all that difficult, but they will take some work.  I had done a home depot run to get some proper glue(s), styrafoam, and finial-type things to finish them off.  Mostly it's just the little plastic things that get EVERYWHERE!!!  Definitely glad I confined this all to the garage--otherwise it would be a mess from which I'm not sure I could come back from.  Still need to do a few more--and the longer Lupin one (that I'm using an old shoe rack as a base) still needs to be covered in cardboard, but the rest of them are coming along pretty well.  They also all need to have their wood bases screwed/hammered on so that they don't all blow away.  But I figured I would get the styrafoam done first before having to go get wood.

Made 2 of these--possibly for
the Weasley twins 

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Portrait Gallery

Very exciting project conclusion!  It started as a kind of "what the !@#$ am I going to put up in the kitchen?" and ended up being super epic.  So the talking portraits are such a huge awesome part of the Hogwarts castle--and one of the aspects I was highly impressed by at the ride in Orlando that they were able to recreate.  And I wanted to do something with them in recreating my own Hogwarts.  So I started to pull pictures off the internet--portraits and group portraits that were realistic looking and that maybe looked like they could suddenly start talking.  I also grabbed a bunch of realistic looking images of wood frames.  Then I overlaid the frames onto the paintings, grouped them, and saved the whole thing as a new image.

The next step was to send them all to my local Office Max print center; I just have to say how incredibly nice they were--answering questions back and forth via email about pricing and making sure every step of the way that everything was being printed exactly how I wanted and at the price they had quoted.  Anyway, I had them print out about 30 of these portraits on 11x17 paper at ~$1.18 a page.  I figured this was worth it for several reasons. 1) That much high quality ink would set me back at least 2 ink cartridges, 2) my printer doesn't print 11x17, so I couldn't get them as big as I'd like.  3) If my computer messed up on 1 of them--wasting quite a bit of ink.  And the results were incredible--seriously high quality.  A tip if ever anyone tries this--make sure to save your jpegs in a high resolution (you can change it with a button as you're saving the image).

I just finished cutting them all out with a paper cutter and will be putting them up on the walls and figuring out if I need any more after work:)

Put up all that would reasonably fit up on two sides of a wall.  I have 7 left (not that I couldn't get more)--I'm not sure quite what to do with them yet.  I could fill out the one wall a bit more, or possibly do a partial fill of a different wall, or maybe use a few to fill out part of the wall in the Gryffindor common room.  May have to meditate on it a bit...

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Fat Lady Costume

Got the headdress for my Fat Lady costume done.  Which basically consisted of arranging some leaves and fake grapes along a headband.  But still--one more thing to check off the (alarmingly long) list.

Monday, September 15, 2014


Put some of the dowels on the backs of the cut out owls.  Got about eight of them ready to be strung up on strings and hung from hooks.  Will probably do a few more though, just to get the whole ceiling covered.

Friday, September 12, 2014

Gravestone lettering

Test piece, just to see if the method would work.  The streaks
are because I didn't wait until it was dry before putting on
the second color. 
Tried a new technique for the gravestone lettering where you actually use the tip of a hot glue gun to melt the plastic Styrofoam to create indented letters, paint them black, then go over them again with another color, but diagonally so that the second paint doesn't get into the grooves of the lettering.  I did a test case on a smaller piece of Styrofoam just to see if it would work.  Totally does--woot!  So I've been going after the gravestone epitaphs one by one.  May have screwed up the Sirius Black one--I (stupidly) got a bit impatient and spray painted it with black (a big no no with Styrofoam) and it immediately started to eat away at the foam.  Haven't figured out if it's salvageable.  But lesson learned.  So I'll just use the old school paint with brush method.

I got fancy with this one--printed out in fancy font and transferred with blue transfer paper.  Once you get the hang of it,
the hot glue gun is actually a pretty easy way to do the lettering.  And it allows for some nicer script than I would be able
to do if I was cutting it out.  

First fully painted one (that wasn't screwed up by spray paint).  The next step will be to go over it diagonally with a gray or maybe a white.  

Finished plaque with a coat of gray over everything.

Got the Weasley twins done today.  Yes, George isn't dead (*sniff*) but I wanted to do the Mischief/Managed on either of their tombstones, and put them side by side.

Finished plaques.  *sniff*

Also got more owls done, as well as sewing up a few more Daily Prophets.

Got a few more plaques traced out.  Think I'll possibly take them outside in the garage to eek out the lettering if it's nice.  Got a bit woozy the other day while working on some of them--best not to test it out if I'm doing a bunch of them.  So I got the Lupin plaques ready--3 of them, 1 with a "LUPIN" in larger letters--and the Severus Snape one.  Turned out well.  Oh, and got the Sirius Black one painted with the gray.  I think I managed to salvage it from the spray paint disaster--I figure I can put him closer to the back anyways.  

Thursday, September 11, 2014


Bit of a side project.  A friend is having a Lord of the Rings themed wedding reception, and guests are to come in costume, so I went about pulling together a costume.  One of the easiest is a hobbit, so I rummaged in my closet for a dress, made a wreath for my hair (thank you Joann's clearance aisle), made a half apron (with pockets), got some elf ears, and of course--made some hobbit feet.  Yes, could have got barefoot, but there will be a firepit and fairly dark--I don't fancy stepping on a sprinkler head; and I'm not as familiar with their backyard.  ANYway, so it was a matter of just making some hobbit feet.  Got some 'funny feet' (plastic feet, slightly large), and some slip on shoes that could be painted.  Found some white shoes a bit on the large size, so they should be able to slip these on a little easier.  Then just attached the feet to the shoes with superglue and hot glue.  Once that was fairly secure, I gave them a coat of paint so that it would blend together a bit more.  And be a little closer to my own (fishbelly) skin tone. Might go over the feet one more time with a bit more shading, especially on the nails before I add a patch of fur or hair to the tops of the feet.  

Thursday, September 4, 2014

Off to Comic Con!!

I even figured out how to make the lion roar (small mp3 player with a speaker attached)--will have to see how well it works.  Also very excited to meet Dave Kellett who writes Sheldon Comics, and the guys who write Cyanide and well as John Barrowman.  Squee!

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Quidditch dice

Not sure if these will be used, but I wanted a way to pick out teams for Quidditch relatively easily--thus, dice.  I stole 2 blocks from a kid's set of picture blocks I had and mod podged on the crests, as well as 2 other "the last winners" and "the last losers."