If you’ve spent any time following my blog, you will know that we are huge Harry Potter fans. I love the magic of the world of Harry Potter. I love the battle for good versus evil. I love the emphasis that you can choose to become the best version of yourself, no matter how hard it is. I love that we are taught to fight and stand up for what’s right. But most of all, I love when looking back in time, Harry Potter very much reminds me of the precious time I’ve had raising my children.
My oldest son loved all things Harry Potter. The movies were coming out just as he was old enough to see them and we would always go see them in the theatre as soon as they came out. His dad would spend hours reading to him from all the Harry Potter books and that is where he really got into reading. He must have re-read that series dozens of times.
We would visit Universal Studios whenever we could to go see the Wizarding World of Harry Potter and enjoy that magical theme park. We built some incredible family memories together visiting shops like Flourish and Blotts, Eeylops Owl Emporium, Florean Fortescue’s Ice Cream Parlour, Weasleys’ Wizard Wheezes, and of course, Ollivander’s. I recall our very first visit to Ollivander’s, my then 10 year old was selected to pick out his very own wand. If you’ve never had the opportunity to go to Ollivander’s and see the wand selection take place live before your very own eyes, you have to go! The experience is one of a kind and really cool.
On one occasion, my son and I met Daniel Radcliffe in New York City, where Daniel signed my son’s copy of Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone and took a selfie with him. They had a great conversation and, let me tell you, Daniel Radcliffe couldn’t have been any nicer. He is easily my most favorite celebrity encounter.
When we took our family to London several years ago, we got to delve into the making of the movies by visiting the Warner Bros Studio Tour in Leavesden. I remember seeing the actual cupboard under the stairs, the Ministry of Magic, the Great Hall and so much more. The details of the sets in real life were really spectacular.
Endless hours have been spent over the years with my kids dressing up as characters, creating school assemblies, building LEGOs, making Harry Potter themed snacks and Butterbeer, playing Harry Potter themed games. It’s safe to say that whenever I see or hear anything to do with Harry Potter, I get a big smile on my face and remember in abundance all the wonderful times we have shared together as a family.
When we moved into our new house this year, I found we had a “cupboard under the stairs” of our own! I knew immediately what I had to do with that space! Although my kids are way older now, I have a large amount of young nieces and nephews and maybe one day in the not-so-distant- future, grandkids of my own, that we could introduce to our very favorite characters and wizard-themed world. So, we decided to create a magical themed play space under the stairs. Here’s what we came up with!
This is what we had under the stairs. Just a small little space that I’m not really sure what you are supposed to do with, honestly. When looking for houses, I noticed many homes had these spaces and lots were filled with luggage and other storage. I knew we could do more with this space, though.
We started off without a plan in mind and it sort of evolved. We knew it was too plain as it was. I’m not big into painting and in a small space like this, that could have been hard to maneuver. We opted for peel and stick wallpaper from Etsy shop D Marie Interiors. I think this was the best thing I could have done for this space. It instantly transformed the feel of the inside and was the perfect building block for creating a new realm. The peel and stick wallpaper was super forgiving of any mistakes I made. It was so easy to apply! If I messed up, I could peel it off and try again. But really, I had this up in no time! The great thing is, if I ever wanted to redo the space or needed to remove the stone wallpaper for any reason, it comes right off and is reusable.
I wanted to divide the area into sections. I wanted some spots to resemble Kings Cross Station and Platform 9 3/4, some areas to look like Hogwarts, and one section to look like a living space is Gryffindor common area. I knew I would be putting a bunch of toys in here for my nieces and nephews to play with, but I didn’t want it to look over run with clutter, which would be easy to do in such a small space. So, I looked to Lushes Curtains for a simple and unique solution. This online retailer was amazing to work with! They created a custom burgundy flocked velvet curtain with gold rope tie backs for one of the walls. The process couldn’t have been easier for me. There is no way I could have found a more perfect solution for toy storage. I simply measured the area and explained what I wanted to do. They helped me come up with just the right size curtain for the space. I added a simple curtain rod to the wall and I had these hung up in no time. I love that the red velvet looks like something straight out of a castle. The quality of the curtains is amazing, just the right texture and weight for the space. I can keep the curtain tied back for a neat look, or I can undo it to hide any unsightly mess created by bigger toys. I highly recommend Lushes Curtains for all your curtain needs!
I found some really adorable used furniture for the space through Facebook marketplace. Since this was going to be a Harry Potter themed space and I wanted it to be warmer colors and not bright pink plastic kitchens, I had to scour for a bit. But, what I found seems to be perfect. I found a wooden cupboard that I spray painted dark gray that has little drawers and cupboards that open and close. I also found a wooden kitchen.
Now it was time to accessorize the space! I wanted to find things that might have been in Hagrid’s Hut or things you would have found in the castle, all the while being something safe to keep within the reach of little hands. I picked up a birdcage to place a stuffed Hedwig and plastic pumpkins at Hobby Lobby. I found the most adorable Etsy shop that makes felt critters, food, and decor, WhyKnotsCollections. This is the sweetest shop and I found the perfect accessories for our little cupboard here. A soft felt succulent is something I can’t get over. I love the idea of having little plants in here without the worry of something breaking or being ingested by little ones. They also created a wolf and tree, which fits the decor perfectly!
Mystical things and creatures are always found in this world, so it seemed only natural to have a dragon’s egg on the shelf, too. I love this special yellow ombre dragon egg that sits perfectly on the little cupboard shelf from Etsy shop Hope and Grace Pens. This shop has way more than just dragon eggs, so be sure to look through their listings, but these are the perfect size for my play space. Harry Potter fanatics of all ages will love the different exotic eggs available here.
To add to both the ambiance and decor on my cupboard, I love these miniature Harry Potter themed wooden music boxes. Simply wind it up and the melodies of Hedwig’s Theme fill the walls. I mean, how perfect is that?! WhatIsInTheBox has a wide variety of sweet, well-made music boxes, such as this engraved Hogwarts Castle box, that are absolutely lovely and will be thoroughly enjoyed.
For the wall decor, I can not rave about these art prints from Emily at FoxBurrowDesigns enough! She created a series of places from the world of Harry Potter like Hagrid’s Hut, Hogwarts Castle, the Burrow, Grimauld’s Place and Diagon Alley that are the perfect size and fit for this space. They are sweet and cheery renditions of some of our favorite places!
We can’t have a play space for a wizard without a place to hang your wand, right? I love this handcrafted Ollivander’s wooden sign and wand holders from Rachel at DesignsByOceansEdge. She created the perfect sized wand holder for this space that would hold enough wands for my nieces and nephews to play with, but keep safe when they aren’t in use. This sign is actually so well done! It arrived packaged so securely and I absolutely love it!
We filled the wand holder with beautiful wands from Not Topic. This shop is loaded with great Harry Potter themed items. Want to dress the part of your favorite house? Want to decorate your bedroom? They’ve got you covered. Any gear you could possibly want is here to express your love of our favorite wizards and witches. I love the wands you can get here so much! They are very high quality. Pick out your favorite wand (or three!) from this shop, they are perfect!
Speaking of perfect, check out these Enchanted Flying Keys inspired by the films created by Etsy shop CLOAKSandCROWS. I love adding these keys to the decor because it is such an unusual element that the biggest fans would love. I’ve never seen anything like them before and it really adds to the whimsy and fun of the space. I highly recommend shopping at this fun retailer!
On the other side of the space, we added some more stick and peel wallpaper, this time a red brick print that would be reminiscent of King’s Cross Station. We found some wall decals for Platform 9 3/4 and the Ministry of Magic. To add to the fun, we thought it would be great to add in a familiar face to the wall. That’s right, we put a portrait of our Jack Russell,Olive, dressed as a Gryffindor quidditch player. We were able to design this through Etsy shop YOPETZ. This shop is wonderful! He was able to create just the right portrait of our favorite pooch and it turned out great. We printed it out on peel and stick paper, so it was easy to put on the walls, without taking up a ton of space. Now everytime the kids see her photo, I hear lots of giggling.
To finish off the decor on the walls, we added some more mystical creatures important to the wizarding world. These are the funniest and definitely the most unique accessories I have found. They work perfectly in this space, but would also be great in a Harry Potter themed nursery. GrammaInTheBox created these amazing faux taxidermy pieces of a phoenix and HippoGriff and they take our decor to an another level. I mean, seriously! How awesome are these stuffed and mounted animals? The quality and detail of these handmade animals is off the charts. Sheri, the talent behind the shop, is very gifted and did a spectacular job making these. I love them, and more importantly, so does everyone who comes into the space.
Near the play kitchen, we found the perfect addition for our space. Floating candles! How cool to have a set or two of your very own floating candles in a Harry Potter themed playroom, right? Etsy shop AtticAngelCreations is where you can pick up your very own. These candles are so great! Invisible fishing line can keep them hanging above their heads and add to the magical allure of eating food at Hogwarts. These candles are durable and safe for use around little ones, as they are flameless. The kids love them!
Since we built the idea of this space all around reading some of the greatest books of all time, it would make sense that we wanted to have a little nook so that kids can cuddle up and read, when the mood hits them. I love this beautiful hand sewn Harry Potter reading pillow created by FeliciaBCreations. The pillow is great for laying on when you are reading your favorite book and when you aren’t, you can store your book inside the pocket. It can even be personalized for your favorite little reader. So whether you want to create a play space like I did, or if you just want a great gift idea, this shop has you covered!
And last, but certainly not least, we have to have the perfect costume to wear in this world, right? That’s what we thought, too. LeeAnn from EpicEnsemble took care of that for us when she created a Harry Potter inspired house robe! This beautifully made cloak can be handmade for your own favorite wizard. She does an incredible job making these exquisite robes for both children and adults. So be sure to visit her shop for your own needs, whether it be dress up or costumes for Halloween. We know this robe will be used for years to come. You can also pick up all the right accessories from her, as well, to finish off the desired wizard look.
So there you have it! Our DIY wizard inspired play room, our very own little cupboard under the stairs. Already hours of fun have been had it in and all the items in it are holding up great. Check out the great shops we found these items in and have fun perusing!
*some products were received to facilitate a feature, all opinions are my own*